With the Finals approaching and questions a'plenty surrounding the Lakers, there's nary a shortage of talking points this young offseason. Along with ESPNLA.com's Ramona Shelburne, we chop up the following:
- (2:54): The OKC Thunder pulled off what was the seemingly impossible, reversing a 2-0 Western Conference Finals deficit with four consecutive wins against the San Antonio Spurs, heretofore undefeated in the postseason. And in a nice bit of symbolism, they defeated the Mavs, Lakers and Spurs along the way, and those just happen to be the ONLY teams who've represented the west since 1998. Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, James Harden and Serge Ibaka are all 23 or younger. Save perhaps luxury tax implications, can anything prevent OKC from becoming a sustained powerhouse, and can the Lakers be a part of that roadblock?
- (6:50): A note to NBA players who dig the no-lens glasses (and we're not judging this fashion trend, just making an observation): If you wanna wear them at the podium, where you'll be filmed from a distance, knock yourself out. But as Dwyane Wade demonstrated after the game 5 loss to OKC, those glasses look ridiculous while filmed in a media scrum from close up. You look like a kid doing a high school play.
- (12:30): However the Lakers retool the roster, they need to make sure the pieces complement each other. Star power alone doesn't guarantee wins. Just ask the Knicks. For that matter, any role players added must be more reliable and compatible as well.
- (16:30): The Lakers' cap issues are very real, and very hard to circumvent.
- (21:50): There are some Lakers fans rooting against the Thunder because they don't want to see Derek Fisher get a sixth ring before Kobe Bryant. Umm... why? Has the "Count the rings!!!" mantra really made us this literal-minded? I understand Mamba fans being prideful/protective of 24's legacy, but I can assure you, his first ballot Hall of Fame resume doesn't become diluted in the slightest by Fish owning one more chip. Trust me on this. I have a blog.
- (25:08): None of us are rooting for the Heat, but if they do happen to win a title, we're hoping a byproduct will be a change in the way fans and media talk about basketball.
- (29:00): If the Heat don't win, will it put an end to the "You must have a Big 3 to compete" narrative of the last couple seasons?
- (32:10): Metta Weatherman Peace!