Letters to Sports: Lakers are doomed if they don’t make big changes
What is it going to take for Jeanie Buss to say enough is enough? Can it be any more clear to her that Rob Pelinka and Darvin Ham are not worth the paychecks they are receiving?
Let’s start with Ham. He’s not a head coach. Period. Here’s a guy that stands with his hands in his pockets all game long and watches the world go by. He fails to substitute properly, leaves players in games who scored as many points as I did and has one of the worst offenses in the NBA. He brings absolutely nothing to the team. That leads to Pelinka, the general manager who hired Ham. He also blew up a championship team, signed below-average free agents, drafted with his eyes closed and overpaid an injury-prone player.
Enough is enough. This team is going nowhere and something has to be done. If not, Crypto.com Arena will indeed be transformed into an actual crypt because nobody will be inside.
No need to watch Laker games this season. The script is always the same. Jump ball and LeBron casually brings the ball up and misses his first shot. Opponent rushes up the court with urgency and promptly makes a three-point shot. Look up at the scoreboard later and the Lakers are down double digits. The Lakers play furiously in the fourth quarter and make it close only to lose again. Rinse and repeat.
Mr. Pelinka, how’s your draft pick, Jalen Hood-Schifino, look compared to the guy you passed up, Jaime Jaquez? You must have been looking at Hood-Schifino’s high school highlights instead of watching the fundamentally sound Jaime playing for four years at UCLA. I guess you like the flashy stuff.
One more guy you passed up, Tyronn Lue. No wonder the Lakers are losing. And let’s leave out choosing Lonzo Ball over Jason Tatum.
You can find a new line of work.
Not only are the Lakers below .500 now, they are sub-.500 for the last 10 years. During that time they have been an inept team under a bunch of inept coaches with an inept owner. Any owner who would let Magic Johnson walk away from a management position does not deserve to own a franchise in this city. Period.
The NBA should convince “the owner” to sell the franchise and get out of town. That is the obvious fix.
Having been a Los Angeles NBA fan for over 50 years, I am so proud to call myself a Clippers fan. By virtue of hard play and strategic trades, the Clippers find themselves climbing the standings. It’s great to have an NBA team to root for.
In-house shooting help
Dear Coach Cronin; I have a suggestion for your poor-shooting UCLA basketball team. Londynn Jones from the unbeaten Lady Bruins is shooting almost 90% from the free-throw line and 35% for the season for three-pointers. How about Miss Jones conducts a shooting clinic for the poor-shooting Bruins. They need help badly.
I have a very simple question: How can a college program as elite as UCLA basketball have a team of such terrible shooters? They even miss layups rather often.
Kicker double take
So let me see if I’ve got this straight: The Rams waive their hapless kicker to bring in a new kicker. They then bring in a known kicker to their practice squad, in case their new kicker keeps missing extra points. They then waive the known kicker they signed to the practice squad. They then waive their new kicker to bring back the original hapless kicker they first waived in order to sign the new kicker that they just waived. And the waived known kicker who was on the practice squad had a chance to beat the Rams last Sunday. Of course, he misses the kick. And yet, the Rams’ playoff hopes are still alive and kicking. Or not.
For weeks I have been pounding the table for the Rams to get a reliable kicker. If not for dropped passes by the Giants and their poor kicker, the Rams’ playoff hopes would have ended last Sunday. Is it legal for an NFL team to bring on a college senior whose season has ended? Surely there must be someone out there who would like to be in the playoffs with the Rams and make a little spare cash.
Hey, who knows, maybe for another $500 million Shohei Ohtani might be able to find some spare time to kick field goals and PATs for the Rams.
After last week’s game, and going into the playoffs, the Rams need to work on being good and stop relying on being lucky.
In his column urging Jim Harbaugh to jump to the NFL’s Chargers, Bill Plaschke wrote in his defense, “if you’re not stealing signs, you’re not trying.” Really? I guess he’s had a change of heart and is now a Houston Astros supporter.
Don’t go for it
Many popular trends are ultimately viewed as misguided. The NFL’s new tendency to go for it on fourth down — early in the game when squarely in field-goal range — is among these. Detroit‘s one-point loss to Dallas would have resulted in a victory if any of the handful of fourth-down attempts were field goals instead. Analytics, shmamalytics. This trend should be in the same wastebasket as mullets, microwave dinners and inflated lips. Take the three points, guys.
They got it right
The fortune tellers on the College Football Playoff selection show got it right with the selection of Alabama as No. 4 and not Florida State. What an embarrassment it would have been if FSU with its 13-0 record had been in the final four! Good job by Kirby Smart and his Georgia Bulldogs.
Rancho Palos Verdes
Thank you for the beautiful tribute to Zenyatta, Queen of Racing still. Bill Dwyre has always captured her excitement, personality and importance to the sport. I had the opportunity to meet the Queen twice in 2010, first visit early in the year was intimate, maybe eight people, including Ann and some of her family. Zenyatta is so grand in “person,” it was astounding to see her. Mr. Sherriffs was so loving toward her, and his calm influence was apparent. She loved the attention, the camera, let me pet her and pose with her. Second trip later in the year was like a busload of fans there, but the Queen was regal and calm as ever. She is one of a kind and I am grateful for the care she has received and the generosity of all involved with her. thank you Bill!
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