FanPost

Turiaf Gone from Lakers: Does LRM have a shot?

I haven't been following LRM on the Laker summer league team because, well, I'm not a Lakers fan.  I am, however, or at least I thought I was, a huge LRM fan, and unless I'm mistaken his situation just became vaguely more interesting.  With GSW signing Turiaf, the Lakers could use a big strong defensive-minded rebounder and shot-blocker, and LRM might be one of their prime candidates.  It helps that he would willingly play for the minimum.  I wonder if Farmar and even Ariza might make a case for him.  But it bears watching. 

LRM really made the ultimate sacrifice this year, and in some ways it was extra unfortunate because it didn't have to happen and the Bruins could have been stronger at the finish if he had had more playing time during the season.  I give BH all the credit in the world, but when Westbrook blew up in DC's absence and then teams were zoning the Bruins and BH essentially went to the 3 guard lineup and moved LRMM to the 4, LRM's playing time was drastically reduced.  BH never committed or tried very hard to play LRM and KL together, which would have been a good move all along because it would have put the ball in KL's hands on the perimeter, something else which took a really long time to get going.  Of course KL was a superlative college center, and it's hard to find fault with riding the best horse, but LRMM was a tough, well-trained, solid senior college center, and he ended up on the floor only when Love was resting.  Towards the end of the season as teams got more physical and tougher LRMM didn't have the mojo he might have had if he had gotten a lot more minutes, and the Bruins rotation didn't have the bigs to compete, defend, and rebound at times.  There were tough choices involved, with LRMM a tweener and relatively ineffective in his time at the 3, and JS was complicated as well.  In the end it was a great run, and LRM was a hero in every way, even though he didn't get to spend much time up on the stage.

So now he'll probably end up playing in Spain or somewhere else in Europe, and he's going to do great and benefit from the fact that it's an international game now.  But others who follow the Lakers more closely than I do might want to follow the situation, see if he's going to training camp and who else is going to be there competing against him for the spot.  I guess Bynum was just cleared to resume "basketball activities," although he won't be playing 5-on-5 at least until training camp.  So you have Bynum gingerly coming off the surgery, Gasol (great player but not tough enough), Chris Mihm (decent regular season back-up, not tough, oft-injured), Odom (not tough enough at PF, but good and fun, and at the SF with Bynum-Gasol-Odom-Kobe-Farmar, that's the big ticket), and that's it.  Mbenga I guess.  Worth watching.

Other Bruin-Laker thoughts include the idea that the team might have more juice with Farmar moving into the starting lineup this year.  Just a thought--curious about other opinions.  DFish still the key vet coming off the bench.  Getting Ariza back at reasonable money was a big step for the Lakers too--that's another mystery, how TA had 10 extraordinary minutes against Boston and then never played again.  He was the defender who could have slowed down Pierce and made hustle plays, I think, but he was just coming off the injury, and he wouldn't have stopped the massacre.  It would be a great story if the hardest-working Bruin of them all could pull a stunner and make the squad. 

<em>This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of BruinsNation's (BN) editors. It does reflect the views of this particular fan though, which is as important as the views of BN's editors.</em>

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