Los Angeles Lakers: Kamenetzky Brothers Land O' Lakers PodKast

PodKast: Antawn Jamison on signing in L.A., Princeton O, and honey buns

August, 3, 2012
Kamenetzky By Brian Kamenetzky
Earlier in the week, Kobe Bryant said the Lakers plan on running the Princeton offense this year, in an effort to add more structure and better take advantage of their talent on that side of the ball. To that end, the Lakers are reportedly adding Washington Wizards head coach and Princeton O expert Eddie Jordan to Mike Brown's staff.

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Thursday afternoon, Andy and I welcomed to the show new Lakers forward Antawn Jamison, who played for Jordan in D.C. for over four seasons. Among other things, we asked him what the new offense might look like for the Lakers, why it's a good fit, and how running a system helps give a team an identity:

Q: How did you enjoy playing in the offense, and more specifically how do you picture Steve Nash being used in it?
"The thing about [those seasons], we had Gilbert Arenas, Caron Butler, Larry Hughes -- we had guys that are offensive threats that can really put the ball in the basket. I think the notion of the [Princeton] offense is that it slows you down. teams that don't have that much talent use it because they're going against teams with much more talent and you're trying to slow them down, but we were up there in scoring every year.

And the thing I like about it, especially with Steve, you can do so much. Steve is a great player with the ball in his hands, and a great player without the ball in his hands. To have his kind of skill set mixed in with this offense, I think the sky is the limit. You put the defense in a bind. You're reading the defense, and every time the defense makes a mistake, it's layup after layup. Imagine having the talent of Pau Gasol or Andrew Bynum, being able to get to the elbow area and one or two dribbles they're right at the rim. You've got guys like Metta [World] Peace who can fight up and slash to the basket. And we all know what kind of attention Kobe's going to get when he gets the ball.

This offense really puts pressure on the defense, and makes them have to work. It's not you're coming down and one guy has the ball, and he's running down 15-20 seconds out of the clock and you're trying to find something. This sets up your teammates to get open shots. This sets up your teammates to create space on the floor. When you have space on the floor with the group of guys we have on this team, that's dangerous."
How important is it for a team to have a system, whatever that system might be?
"I think it's really important ... You know what teams run. It's the same sets, different terminology, or whatever... but with this offense, it gets everybody involved. That's the thing I like about it. Your center can flash up, he can be making passes. If he turns around and doesn't see anything, he has a one-on-one move. It's hard for the defense to take anything away. If they want to deny the ball, you can back-door cut. We've got a numerous amount of guys who can make those types of passes. It really puts your [opponent], defensively, in a bind because there are so many sets you can run.

There are so many things you can do out of sets, and I think with this team, with Steve Nash anchoring it, offensively guys are going to be willing to pass the ball and get guys involved. That's a formula for success ..."

Among the other topics of conversation:
  • What factored into Jamison's decision to choose the Lakers. It didn't even require Mitch Kupchak to sing the Carolina fight song. (:45)
  • How finally getting a chance to play for a title contender has recharged Jamison's batteries heading into his 15th NBA season, and what changes for him. It is, he says, "a different type of pressure." (5:30)
  • Interesting facts mined from www.antawnjamison.com, and the "About Antawn" essay written by ... his mom. First, was Jamison really a fat baby? And what about the junk food habit she writes about? Jamison says any photographic evidence of the former has been destroyed, but cops to the latter. Yes, he still has a weakness for the sugary stuff, with one major exception. "Oh, I don't mess with honey buns anymore." In eight or so years covering the NBA, that might be my single favorite quote. (14:00)

Jackson passes Riley: A.C. Green on L.A.'s iconic coaches

February, 3, 2010
Kamenetzky By Brian Kamenetzky
Wednesday night's 99-97 win over the Bobcats at Staples didn't just help eliminate the sour taste of Monday's frustrating and slightly controversial loss in Memphis, it also gave Phil Jackson his 534th victory as coach of the Lakers, enough to pass Pat Riley for the all-time franchise lead.
Andy and Brian talk Phil Jackson and Pat Riley, plus Kobe vs. Magic. (Call it some serious G.L.O.A.T./G.L.C.O.A.T. conversation.) We welcome 710 ESPN's Beto Duran into the studio to join the discussion. Guest A.C. Green breaks down his time under both Riley and Jackson, and explains why he's probably the only man on the planet allowed to call Kobe "soft."


Only one player suited up in purple and gold for both coaches. A.C. Green won two rings with Riley during the Showtime era, then another with Jackson in the '99-'00 season. (Incidentally, the other seven guys who played for both PJ and Riley form a very eclectic list: Shaquille O'Neal, Smush Parker, Chuck Nevitt, Pete Meyers, Gary Payton, Stacey King, and Jimmy Jackson. Go forth and win a trivia contest!)

Green's connection gives him a unique perspective on the iconic coaching pair, so in anticipation of PJ's achievement- here at Land O' Lakers we're always thinking ahead- I spoke to Green late last week and asked him to outline similarities and differences between them:
"Coach Riley was really a guy who was a disciplinarian. He was very much a "team-first" coach. He wanted and emphasized the bonding of players, of families coming together. Being a family unit was very important to him. But at the same time, he was extremely passionate about what he wanted, and what he believed was going to be winning at all costs. The most important aspect was “get the W.”
Phil, on the other hand (is) much more laid back as a coach in his delivery and approach, but very, very strong in his direction. He knows exactly what he wants, and that’s a common bond that they both shared. They had a different method of communicating that to us players, but both were extremely successful in the NBA world, and of course the top two coaches as far as the Lakers and victories in Lakerland...
...Both of the guys, coach Jackson and coach Riley, players have to adapt to their styles, their philosophies. Because someone (speaking of Jackson) doesn’t maybe use as much passion or force in how the way they deliver (direction), you might think they might be more of a “player’s coach” or the atmosphere might be a little bit better than maybe even a coach Riley, who would have a lot more force to his delivery and (was) very confrontational as far as his approach in some ways. But at the same time, players respond differently to direction. What actually gets a player to tick and perform at their highest level (is different.)

I think the majority of guys in today’s league probably would like that more laid back coach who just sort of lets the players handle themselves, and work their way out of problems and situations, and that’s really more the style, of course, of Phil Jackson."



Kobe Bryant
22.3 5.6 1.3 34.5
ReboundsJ. Hill 8.2
AssistsK. Bryant 5.6
StealsR. Price 1.6
BlocksE. Davis 1.3