Russell suggested in a tweet nearly two weeks ago that Tracy McGrady is the greatest player of all time. Lakers guard Kobe Bryant and his legions of fans expressed their disapproval over Russell’s since-deleted tweet, though Russell said Bryant “was cool” about the incident. “There’s a lot of spoiled Lakers fans. I wasn’t downgrading Kobe at all,” Russell said Saturday in an interview with the Los Angeles News Group. “I was just watching a highlight tape of Tracy McGrady and I got excited. I tweeted and the whole state of California went crazy.”
via Los Angeles Daily News
At the time, O’Neal felt he was not getting the contractual respect the Lakers had afforded Bryant. “It was just two alpha males, the business aspect kicked in, and you know, I was getting older,” O’Neal says on the podcast. “So, you know, management was like ‘Hey, we know you’re getting older and we know you want this, but we want to give you that.’ And in my mind, I was like, ‘I’m not getting older. I don’t want that. I don’t want that,’ and they just wanted to move in a different direction.” For his part, Bryant says on the podcast the parting was practically inevitable. The result was the deal that sent Lamar Odom, Brian Grant and Caron Butler and a first-round pick to the Lakers, with O’Neal two summers later reveling in the Heat’s title. To this day, O’Neal insists he did not force the trade, even though his 2004 bluster indicated otherwise. “I definitely did not want to leave L.A.,” he says on the podcast.
via South Florida Sun-Sentinel
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Buss, who shares the majority ownership of the Lakers with his five siblings, said the Lakers’ franchise is not on the market. “There is no point to sell, because it’s a family business,” he said. “We have Jesse [Buss] who runs the scouting and does an incredible job. Joey [Buss], who is the business side and runs the D-Fenders and does a great job. They’re the future of the Lakers. “We’re not going to sell, that’s all there is to it.”
via Los Angeles Times
In February, Lakers Coach Byron Scott downplayed his use of analytics but has since gone on record, via radio on The Beast 980, that he’ll “use analytics a lot more” this season. On Thursday, Lakers part-owner and executive vice president of basketball operations Jim Buss told The Times, “We’ve been using them for quite a long time. That’s basically [on] what I make all my decisions, is my own analytics.”
via Los Angeles Times