The Lakers stood at .500 on December 20th, but since then, they’ve won only three of their last 19 games, leaving them without a realistic chance of making the playoffs this season. That doesn’t happen often in Lakerland, but even with a high draft pick coming, the team is focused on solving its woes via free agency. That’s the focus of the chatter around the Lakers today, less than 24 hours after could-be target Carmelo Anthony scored 35 points to help send the purple-and-gold to their latest loss. Here’s the talk:
- Marc Berman of the New York Post detects an icy edge to the relationship between Anthony and Mike D’Antoni, his former coach. Berman figures the hard feelings make it unlikely that Anthony would sign with the Lakers this summer.
- If Anthony does sign with the Lakers, it would be an ominous sign for D’Antoni’s job security, opines Harvey Araton of The New York Times.
- Bleacher Report’s Kevin Ding lays out seven reasons why Anthony won’t sign with the Lakers, suggesting that ‘Melo’s ball-stopping, defensive shortcomings, and character flaws are already giving the Lakers pause.
- Within the same piece, Ding notes that Lakers brass is pleased with the job D’Antoni has done this season.
- As a free agent destination, the Lakers “might be less desirable than at any point in their history,” writes Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders, who points to changing economics and increased leaguewide television exposure as reasons why.
- Arash Markazi of ESPNLosAngeles.com answers reader questions in a Laker-themed mailbag column. Markazi can envision the Lakers and Pau Gasol agreeing on a much cheaper deal for the big man this summer.