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February 1, 2015 Updates

Mike Dunleavy woke up the other day ready to go to work. He went through his normal routine, like any worker might with his meal and his exercise and his commute. Just like Dunleavy has done so many times in the last month. One big difference. Dunleavy got there and could not work. As much as he desperately wanted. As much as his business needed him. “I feel terrible not being out there,” the Bulls starting small forward said late Friday night while standing forlornly in the locker room after the Bulls 99-93 loss in Phoenix, Dunleavy missing his 16th consecutive game with a deep bone bruise. “Whether it’s taking up minutes for guys we don’t need playing the high minutes, doing little things that can help the team win. I feel terrible. I feel really guilty about it. But all I can do now is try to get myself back and get healthy and that’s what I’m focusing on.” NBA.com

Former players have rallied around Jackson, almost predictably. "It's the first year and the next couple years, I guess, we'll see if he can make a successful run for himself," said Pau Gasol, who won two championships while playing for Jackson with the Lakers. "I'm sure it's frustrating. He's just got to stay patient. He's a guy that's so intelligent and so cerebral that I think he'll make the right moves." Los Angeles Times

January 31, 2015 Updates
January 30, 2015 Updates

Pau Gasol: I spoke to Marc, but we didn’t talk much because I had a game against the Spurs. We don’t really communicate on game days as we always try to stay focused. It’s part of our code. When I arrived at the arena, the news was confirmed. It was fantastic for all my family, for Marc, and for our fans. It was a truly emotional moment because we wouldn’t have imagined anything like this, even in our wildest dreams. When we finished the game against San Antonio, I called Marc. We congratulated each other. We were very happy, obviously. I was like ‘Hey Marc, this is unbelievable!’ We talked about how happy we were at achieving something so important, and how thrilled we were that our fans voted for us. We talked about our parents too, we imagined how they’d be feeling. We promised to each other we would keep working hard in the future. paugasol.com

What about the idea that no one in the league pushes their players quite like you do? Do you even agree with that premise that has essentially become like gospel? Tom Thibodeau: No. Listen, I've been around a long time. There are so many different ways to pace your team. Like everyone, (outsiders) look at minutes but they don't know what's going on in practice. They don't know how much contact you have (in practice). They don't know what your philosophy is in terms of days off. Is (practice) after back to backs? Is first day of a road trip? Is (practice) a day off after never more than three consecutive days? Whatever it might be, there's a lot that goes into it. But you also — if you're looking at performance and how you can get the best out of people — there's a reason why teams have success over a long period of time. You have to have core values. What do you believe in? Do you believe in hard work? Do you believe in discipline? Do you believe in conditioning? Because those are the things I know that do work. USA Today Sports

What's your pulse of your locker room? Some folks have indicated that there may be a disconnect with you and your guys. How do you see that? Tom Thibodeau: I work every day. I'm not going in there taking their temperature. It's like, "Hey, my job is to be consistent." Come in every day. Give them a good plan. I want them to be able to count on me to tell them the truth. And when it's not good enough, I have to tell them that. I also have to tell them what we have to do to correct it. That's part of my job, so I want them to be able to count on me, to know that I'm not taking a shortcut, I'm going to put the work in and try to come up with answers. We've just to keep improving. It's really simple. USA Today Sports

Gasol has had an incredible season and was recently selected an All-Star starter after taking less money to go to Chicago as a free agent last July. "We really wanted him to stay," Lakers General Manager Mitch Kupchak said beforehand. "We did the best we could to convince him to stay, but I think he needed a change of scenery. ... He's certainly playing at a very high level. "Would we have been a better team with Pau Gasol on our team this year? Absolutely. But maybe Pau says, 'Well, if I would have stayed, with Kobe [Bryant], we could have won 50-something games.' But now Kobe went down, maybe Pau is saying, 'I made the right decision for sure.'" Los Angeles Times

"When things were going well here, it was exceptional," Gasol said. "They say L.A. and New York are two of the top cities, the best cities to win at, but they're probably two of the tougher cities to lose and struggle, because you get so much coverage that media have to create stories and sometimes the bad or negative stories are more attractive. So I felt like there was always a search for something bad or negative to talk about, some drama that was created whether there was some truth to it or not. Los Angeles Times

Pau Gasol: Tough loss for our team tonight but I will never forget this moment. Thanks for the incredible ovation and the love that you all always have shown me. Instagram

January 29, 2015 Updates

Los Angeles Lakers: Pau Gasol makes his return to STAPLES Center tonight. To show our appreciation for The Spaniard, each fan in attendance will receive this "Thanks Pau" shirt at the door. http://instagram.com/p/ydNyBWrOzx/ Instagram

"There's no truth to it at all," Rose told USA TODAY Sports this week when asked if Thibodeau had lost his locker room. "Thibs, he's been doing a great job of preparing us — every game, every practice, every shoot-around. He's been preparing us great. As far as us coming out and losing games, it has to do with the team, the players, coming out and not playing with enough effort and not competing while we're on the floor. That's been some of the biggest reasons why we were in those tough positions and losing those games, but it doesn't have anything to do with the coach or the coaching staff." USA Today Sports

"I wouldn't say so," he told USA TODAY Sports when asked if Thibodeau was pushing too hard when it came to managing minutes and the team's practice routines. "That has nothing to do with coming out on the court and being down 20 in the first quarter. That's straight effort, and your will to go out there and win the game. Just like the other night, we came out – we beat San Antonio, beat Dallas, then lost to Miami at home. It has nothing to do with (Thibodeau). It's just with the players. We've just got to catch onto it, and just try to get better and just try to learn from our mistakes." USA Today Sports


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