Jun 15, 2009

2009 NBA Champions!

We did it! It took a while, and the journey was tough, but victory is sweeter as a result.

Kobe - He's always been considered one of the greatest players, but there were always detractors with excuses. With this win, he's eliminated the biggest one, being robin to Shaq's batman. Not that the argument ever had any validity in determining a player's greatness, but it was still on everyone's mind.

Fisher - Great player, great person, great story. His bulldog-like demeanor defined his gritty play. Never being the biggest or fastest, he knew what he could do and did it well. He is third in the all time list of 3 pointers made in the finals, behind Robert Horry and Michael Jordan.

Odom - Without any slight to Kobe, Odom is my favorite Laker. I've always loved his talent, his unique blend of size, speed and skill. Always great to listen to in interviews. There was a game this season when he walked to the Staples Center for a few blocks, becoming closer to his fans and his city. You know when Odom's in the game; his yell is unmistakable. The candy story was hilarious; I've been searching for watermelon Now N Laters ever since.

Can we re-sign this man? With Ariza also a free agent? I'm not an expert on NBA salaries, but I do know there is no way we can match the offers both players will get from other teams, considering our salary cap situation. I thought of an interesting scenario today. Kobe could opt out and sign a long, backloaded extension. He'll have to make less money up front, but his contract will be absurdly long to make up for it. That way, we'll have some cap relief and be able to offer Odom and Ariza more money. Of course, this scenario will never happen.

Phil - I've criticized Phil a lot during the season. He seemed to never call time outs when he needed to. Then something weird happened. As the playoffs progressed, he called important time outs with more regularity. Of course! He lets his players learn during the season. Come playoff time, they're better equipped at handling adverse situations. Zen.

I wonder when the organization gets back to business. I personally tend to focus on the result, not the journey. Let's enjoy this victory now. Ladies and Gentlemen, your 2009 NBA Champion Los Angeles Lakers!

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