Mike Brown needs to let the Black Mamba do what he wants out there or else the Lakers might suffer another second-round knockout.
Under the new head coach, the Los Angeles Lakers have looked like title contenders one night and a lottery team on another. The Lakers’ inconsistency is what will lead to their imminent demise.
The Lakers currently stand third in Western Conference at 33-20. It’s not reasonable to expect the Lakers to catch up to the San Antonio Spurs and Oklahoma City Thunder. The Thunder are 7.5 games ahead and the Spurs are 4.5 games ahead of the Lakers. The team might be able to come close, but with only 14 games left on the schedule, they will need a miracle. As it stands now the Lakers will likely lose to the Thunder if the two are to meet in the playoffs.
What the Lakers can do is focus on winning as many games as possible and going into the playoffs as one of the hotter teams. Their hometown rivals, the Clippers, are only 1.5 games behind them and they could easily catch up. It is tantamount that the Lakers stop blowing big leads and losing to subpar teams.
The best way to ensure victories is for Coach Brown to make a minor change to his approach.
Brown is not a bad coach whatsoever; his only problem is that he succeeded coach Jackson. If he wants to create an easier transition he must do what Jackson did best, give Kobe Bryant control. It is obvious he has already lost some of his control with the team. There is no reason for him to fight it. Brown should hand over the power to Kobe until he figures his team out.
This does not mean the Black Mamba should shoot 21 shots per game and only make three. What this means is Kobe could be the field general while Brown takes notes and continues to implement his great defensive tactics.
Allowing Kobe to do his thing on the court will benefit the team because he will help implement the offense that has brought the team five championships in the last 12 years: the triangle. The two championship rings the current Lakers won are proof they are best fit for the triangle.
With the way Andrew Bynum has been dominating the paint this season, it only makes sense to go back to the offense. Running the ball through Bynum in the triangle will bring about successful results, similar to the days when Shaquille O'Neal dominated defenses in the triangle.
Not only will this move help Bynum, but it will also help Pau Gasol, who has been lackluster all season. Gasol has been lost in the shuffle in L.A., the reason being because he is comfortable with the triangle.
If Brown allows Kobe to run the show on the court, Gasol will find his way back in the swing of things. As one of their best assets, Gasol needs to be used to the most effective extent. Having him look lost on the court every game will not get the Lakers past the second round.
The tandem of Kobe and Gasol was great for years, but so far this season the fire has died out. With the control in Kobe’s hands, Gasol will come back to his normal self. Using all of Gasol’s talent and making him a staple in the offense again will bring the Lakers exactly what they want: another championship ring.
Not only will the players benefit from a basketball standpoint, they will also benefit from an emotional point of view. Allowing Kobe to run the show on the court will bring the team together like it was before. Kobe has the trust and respect of all the Lakers players while Brown does not. It was obvious Bynum lacks respect for his coach when he took a questionable three-point shot against the Golden State Warriors last week.
If Coach Brown wants to win his first world title as a head coach, he must allow Kobe to run the show. If not, Brown will likely once again join ESPN as an analyst next season.
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