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Kurt Rambis not sure how fast Lakers can play next season

Aug 5, 2013, 8:44 AM EDT

Los Angeles Lakers head coach Mike D'Antoni smiles with Pau Gasol of Spain and Kobe Bryant during their NBA basketball game against the Brooklyn Nets, as he makes his game coaching debut for the Lakers, in Los Angeles Reuters

The Lakers played pretty fast last season — they averaged the fifth most possessions per game in the league. (Houston was the fastest, have fun with that Dwight Howard.)

Of course, Mike D’Antoni would like the Lakers to play faster. But Kurt Rambis doesn’t sound optimistic the Lakers can do that with the roster as constructed, at least he sounded that way speaking to Eric Pincus of the Los Angeles Times.

Rambis sounded more like the ESPN analyst he was last season, when he ripped how D’Antoni was using the Lakers personnel.

“The [Lakers] still have big people and I think you have to take advantage of the big people,” said Rambis in a phone interview with The Times on Thursday. “You can’t ignore them because they are an asset to your offense….

“In order to run, you need a push guard. That’s Steve Nash,” said Rambis. “It remains to be seen whether he’s coming back from his injuries, and continues to [push] at an elite fast-break pace….

“You need guys that can really get out and fill the wings because that pushes the defense down,” said Rambis. “That’s not necessarily the way that you would look at this team and describe them. You might say that with Nick Young, but it’s not necessarily Kobe’s forte nor was it Metta World Peace‘s forte last year.”

The Lakers have some guys who can run — Jordan Farmar pushing the ball with the second unit and having Wesley Johnson and Young on the floor, you can see some of that working. You can also see D’Antoni getting better ball movement in the halfcourt with Pau Gasol in the post and Kobe working to his spots.

But the Lakers remain what they were last year — not a great roster fit for what D’Antoni prefers to do. And as happened last year, it will be D’Antoni that needs to adjust.

  1. onlyavoice - Aug 5, 2013 at 9:33 AM

    D’Antoni Does Not Adjust.
    D’Antoni Did Not Adjust Last Season, Kobe Did.(Playoff Promise Push)
    D’Antoni Did Not Hire Rambis, The Lakers Did. (DEJA VU Knicks)
    Nash Should Never Had Been Signed. (LMAO, Kobe Moves Nash To The 2 So Team Can Make The Playoffs)

    • sportsfan18 - Aug 5, 2013 at 1:35 PM

      As many have said, including yourself, it’s D’Antoni that doesn’t adjust.

      Nash, as old as he is, is still valuable to an NBA team. No, he can’t play as many min’s and go as hard as long as he used to… Father Time is undefeated…

      But, Nash just missed another 50/90/40 shooting season as he “only” shot .497% from the field, shot well over 90% from the free throw line and well over 40% from 3 pt range.

      His true shooting percentage last yr at age 38 and in his 17th NBA season was .605%, which coincidentally is what his career average is for his true shooting percentage.

      He is currently in 13th place ALL TIME on the list of players for true shooting percentage in the NBA. He is STILL a great shooter and even with all the press he’s gotten in his career, he still isn’t recognized as being as great of a shooter as he is.

      Steve Nash, last yr at 38, had a higher 2 pt FG%, free throw % and 3 pt % than Ray Allen did last yr in his age 37 season.

      That shouldn’t shock anyone as Steve Nash has a higher career shooting percentage in each of these categories than Ray Allen. Ray is a career .401% 3 pt shooter. Nash is a career .419% 3pt shooter.

      So yes, Nash is old and has slowed down, but the man is still a great shooter and a plus average player.

      If the coach would use him and the others more to their strengths it would be a diff story.

      • raycharlesj - Aug 5, 2013 at 3:32 PM

        Look at what playing for stats got Nash look at what playing for a championship got Allen!! Do you really think Allen is concerned with how his personal numbers look compared to Nash personal numbers???? The end results makes the numbers either positive or negative. Nash numbers could have been 500% from 3pt range it would not have mattered if they still got bounced in the first round of the playoffs, Ray Allen could have shot .301% from 3pt. range it would not have mattered if he still hit a game winning shot in the NBA finals to help secure another championship victory. Isn’t that the real goal??? for all of them.

      • sportsfan18 - Aug 5, 2013 at 6:58 PM

        First, I’m not a Laker fan but many in basketball, not just the Lakers or their fans thought the Lakers were going to be very good last year.

        Nash isn’t and hasn’t ever played for stats. But before I go there, I wasn’t putting Ray Allen DOWN. As a matter of fact, it’s well known by all in the NBA that Ray Allen is a great shooter. He’s made more 3 pt shots than anyone in history. I’m NOT taking anything away from Ray Allen. He’s great and he is considered great by those in the NBA and by the fans.

        My point, if you read what I wrote is that yes Nash is older and is slowing down, but even with the press Nash has received in his career, I said that he ins’t known for being a great shooter. He hasn’t gotten is due for how well he shoots. Ray Allen has and Ray Allen deserves his praise.

        I’m NOT trying to take that away from Ray, but to simply give Nash his due. If you notice, I was responding to “onlyavoice” and his post where he said Nash should never have been signed.

        Again, back to stats. Nash hasn’t ever played for them. As well as he’s shot always in his career, he HASN’T demanded the ball. In 17 seasons, Nash has “only” attempted 3,915 3 pt shots. Ray Allen, in his 17 seasons has attempted 7,120 3 pt shots.

        Allen has scored over 6,000 plus more points in his career than Nash.

        Nash is currently 13th ALL TIME in the NBA in true shooting percentage. Considering teams only get so many shot attempts in a game, around 80 to 81 shots a game as a team, you’d think a player that only has 12 men ahead of him in the entire history of the game as being better shooters would want the ball more, to shoot more.

        Nash has NEVER played for stats. We all KNOW that Nash has his hands on the ball all the time in his career. Yet he doesn’t take a lot of shots. He does hand out a lot of assists.

        He will finish no lower than 3rd all time on the all time assists record when he retires.

        Had NASH had an ego and wanted to play for stats, he would have taken a lot more shots since he’s had the ball in his hands so much throughout his career.

        One may NOT say that Nash went to LA to play for stats. He went there to play for a championship but we all know it didn’t work out. But last summer, everyone thought the Lakers were a contender. So he went to play for a championship, not stats. It just didn’t work out that way.

        Yes, winning is the goal and Nash has always been a team player, selfless. He was chasing a ring at the end of his career by going to the Lakers just like Allen was chasing (another one in his case) ring with the Heat.

      • sportsfan18 - Aug 5, 2013 at 7:09 PM

        Ray Allen, to me, should go into the hall of fame. I don’t have anything bad to say about him. It wasn’t just this post, onlyavoice’s but on many other posts, people put Nash down. I’m simply trying to point out that he is better than people think or realize. While Nash is currently 13th all time in true shooting percentage with a .6054%, Ray Allen is currently in 48th place with a .5799% career true shooting percentage.

        Again, Mr. Allen is fantastic. My point is that Nash isn’t a slouch and that he performed and shot very well last yr.

        And even though Nash is older and slowing down. His true shooting percentage last season was .605%, which just happens to be what his career true shooting percentage. This means that at 38 yrs old and in his 17th season, he still wasn’t lowering his career true shooting percentage when the majority of players in their age 38 seasons are really hurting their career averages.

    • antistratfordian - Aug 5, 2013 at 2:21 PM

      Kobe didn’t really adjust like he needed to. What Kobe needed to do last year was to find a way not to lead the league in field goal attempts. Instead it was the same old “bad” Kobe – his ego impelling him to lead the league in FG attempts just as he’s done in 6 out of the last 8 years. And it’s no coincidence that the 2 years where Kobe didn’t lead the league in FG attempts are also the 2 years the Lakers last won it all (2009 & 2010).

      Kobe and D’Antoni might be made for each other when it comes to their stubbornness.

  2. mrjackson777 - Aug 5, 2013 at 10:52 AM

    D’Antoni is 1 trick pony. He didn’t adjust in New York, didn’t adjsut in LA. Rambis will be head coach by end of season. He wants 40 year old Nash to be 30 year old Nash. Unless he a flux capicitor, that ain’t happening.

    • abchome - Aug 5, 2013 at 11:14 AM

      Rambis to replace D’Antoni? That would be a great plan. LOL!

  3. bucs24 - Aug 5, 2013 at 1:54 PM

    When lakers start 4-18 dumbtoni gone Rambis to fill in

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