Monthly Archives: January 2021

Montrezl Harrell Jersey

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Montrezl Harrell just became a part of the Los Angeles Lakers squad this season during free agency. He was drafted in 2015, where he spent two season playing for the Houston Rockets. After that, Harrell was in Los Angeles but was playing for the Los Angeles Clippers for the last three seasons. Even though Harrell has only been playing in the NBA for five seasons, he is a very seasoned player.

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Harrell is becoming a consistent player and can be beneficial to the Lakers squad. In fact, Harrell won the NBA Sixth Man of the Year Award for the 2019-2020 season.

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Montrezl Harrell’s Growth

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When looking at Harrell’s career stats, the growth throughout his career is clear. As just a 22 year old rookie, Harrell only averaged 3.6 points, 1.7 rebounds and 9.7 minutes per game. Then his stats increased from there. In just two seasons, Harrell was averaging double-digit points per game while averaging less than 20 minutes per contest. Last season, when winning the Sixth Man of the Year Award, Harrell had the best season of his career.

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He averaged 18.6 points, 7.1 rebounds, and 27.8 minutes per game. It seems as though Montrezl is a prime example of using his experience to grow. Harrell may not have been a star when he first started but his hard work and effort seemed to pay off.

Why is Montrezl Harrell so Beneficial to the Los Angeles Lakers?
Courtesy of heavy.com

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Harrell does not play a lot of minutes but he is quite efficient with his court time. The spark that Harrell provides off the bench is something that can shift the momentum into the Lakers’ favor. To be a sixth man, the attitude of making a difference is so important. Harrell is not pouting about not starting the game but instead figures out a way to impact the game while he is on the floor. Knowing his role may have been a factor in becoming the player he is now. Once Harrell can accept the fact that he will not be starting every game and will be earning his minutes, he can focus on doing his best during his playtime.

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Harrell and the Lakers
With the Lakers, the team’s fanbase was excited to welcome Harrell to the team. The improvement and effort that Harrell displayed does not go unnoticed in the NBA and is admired by players. The Lakers are a talented squad who know how to make each other better. If Harrell plays with the talent on the Lakers, there is no way he will not make an impact. While finding his role may be a little difficult in the start of the season, it is a matter of adjustments. So far this season, in 11 games, Harrell is averaging 12.9 points, 8.0 rebounds and 24.2 minutes per game. While these numbers may not be as high as last season, it is still early in the season. Harrell still has time to adjust and find his role within the Lakers team. The Lakers’ fan base and organization should be happy to have Harrell as a part of the team now. If his statistics indicate anything, this year should be his best yet.

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Playing on the frontend of a back-to-back, the Los Angeles Lakers came out with the same inspired effort they had in Sunday’s meeting with the Houston Rockets, resulting in a 117-100 victory to sweep the mini series at the Toyota Center.

Much like the last game, the Lakers got off to a quick start by getting into the passing lanes and knocking down shots to go up 14-5. LeBron James hit a flurry of jumpers and two Anthony Davis blocks on James Harden eventually extended the Los Angeles lead to 18 points midway through the first.

The Laker defense smothered the Rockets any time they tried to get into the paint while also making sure they contested any shots out on the perimeter. Head coach Frank Vogel trotted out an all-bench unit and they actually put Los Angeles up 35-14 after one.

Talen Horton-Tucker and Montrezl Harrell led the way at the top of the second as each came up with putback dunks, and James added to the fun after draining a corner three and turning to the bench before it went through.

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Although Houston started to crawl back into the contest, L.A. was able to respond each time down the floor.

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope started to heat up after knocking down consecutive 3s, while another James three pushed the Laker lead to 28. The offensive execution in the final minutes was a sight to behold and L.A. went into halftime up 71-48. It represented their most points scored in the first half this season.

Marc Gasol Jersey

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Before Marc Gasol was a utility big man on championship contenders like the Toronto Raptors and Los Angeles Lakers, he was an All-Star center for the Memphis Grizzlies, and while his most statistically successful years came under Dave Joerger, his first few years with the team were under the guidance Lionel Hollins, who now serves as an assistant coach on Frank Vogel’s staff.

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Hollins took over as head coach of the Grizzlies 43 games into the 2008-09 season, which was also Gasol’s first season in Memphis. In the five years that they worked together, Gasol and Hollins formed a close relationship, and Gasol told Kyle Goon of the OC Register that relationship played a pivotal role in Gasol signing with the Lakers in free agency:

“Being reunited with him is special, a big reason I’m here,” he said. “He’s someone I know will be truly honest with me when it comes to it.”

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The Lakers don’t play the same “grit-and-grind” style of basketball that Hollins is credited with having brought to Memphis, but Gasol shared some of the the other qualities that made him such a good coach — qualities that he’s likely brought to the Lakers’ locker room:

This was Gasol’s first game back in Memphis after playing parts of 11 seasons with the Grizzlies from 2008 to 2019. He signed with the Lakers in November after playing for Toronto last season. He first came to Memphis at age 16 to go to high school, arriving in the city after his brother Pau was a Grizzlies rookie in 2001.

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Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) shoots past Memphis Grizzlies center Gorgui Dieng (14) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Sunday, Jan. 3, 2021, in Memphis, Tenn. (AP Photo/Wade Payne)
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Gasol, who was drafted by the Lakers in 2007, was traded to Memphis in February 2008 in a deal in which Pau went to the Lakers. Gasol joined the Grizzlies in July 2008, returning to a city he had first lived in as a teen coming from Barcelona.

The Grizzlies reached the playoffs in seven of the seasons Gasol played for them, and he recalls how the city of Memphis embraced the team and its tough style of play. The city loved him back for that — and because Gasol committed himself to charity work in the community at places such as St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital.

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Highlights from the Lakers’ win over the Memphis Grizzlies on Sunday.

“Memphis, it’s a place that — I don’t know. It’s a special place to me that’s been my home, like, I’ve been here so long,” Gasol said after the Lakers defeated Memphis 108-94. “I got here in 2001 when the franchise actually moved here, so imagine how many years. This is the 20th year since I got here, so the franchise means a lot to me. It’s a part of who I am.

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“The city, the fans, the hospitals that are here, the children’s hospitals — not only St.Jude but also Bonheur. It’s a huge part of who I am and what I stand for as a man and the values I try to teach my kids. So, Memphis, you know, it’s part of who I am. So it’s been awesome and like I said, a full arena would have made it a little more special and a little harder too at the same time. It would have been a little more emotional.”

Gasol was traded by the Grizzlies to the Raptors on Feb. 7, 2019. He wasn’t able to play in Memphis with Toronto after the NBA halted play in March because of the coronavirus.

San Antonio Spurs assistant coach Becky Hammon, center, during a timeout in the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Los Angeles Lakers after head coach Gregg Popovich was ejected from the game, in San Antonio, Wednesday, Dec. 30, 2020. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)
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“Yeah, you always have it in the back of your mind, ‘When am I gonna play in Memphis again?’ But in your mind, it’s also, ‘The stands are full,’ ” Gasol said. “That’s kind of, like I said, it makes it easier when nobody’s out there. But at the same time, it makes it a little less special. Because the people is what made this journey here in Memphis unique and special to me. When you’re playing for a team and a community that is so close to the team, you become, obviously, one of them and become tied. You have the same identity and you represent Memphis, Tennessee, everywhere you go.”

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He kept his emotions in check during the video tribute and then produced a typical Gasol game — seven points, six rebounds, four assists, one steal and no turnovers.

“And from the video, I get those interactions. Those interactions that were special,” Gasol said. “Those interactions with the fans from the year I got here all the way until I got traded. Being a part of the community, to me, was the most important thing.”

One thing with Hollins was for sure: You weren’t going to be making excuses. After taking over, superior conditioning became Memphis’ foundation, won by hard practices. Practices got a lot more challenging, and Hollins didn’t mince words, either.

“Back then as a coach, you were allowed to be honest from the get-go,” Gasol said. “He pretty much coached us however he wanted to coach us. He was very tough. He was brutally honest with us and what was expected of ourselves as players. He held us accountable.”

Hollins and Gasol weren’t able to bring a championship to Memphis during their time together, although they got pretty close in 2013, when the Grizzlies made the Western Conference Finals. Prior to Hollins’ arrival, they hadn’t won a playoff series. Hopefully they’ll be able to get over the hump together in Los Angeles.

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As the Los Angeles Lakers were revamping their roster during the offseason, most considered it a foregone conclusion that Jared Dudley would be re-signed. Dudley half-heartedly had said he would deliver a contract to the front door of Lakers vice president of basketball operations Rob Pelinka if need be.

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Sure enough, the veteran was brought back on another one-year deal. Dudley’s minutes have primarily come late in games yet again, but Lakers head coach Frank Vogel turned to him in the third quarter to help light a spark against the Chicago Bulls.

Dudley was a +5 in his seven minutes on the floor as the team extended their lead. The performance further embodied what the Lakers love about Dudley’s willingness to do whatever is asked of him.

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“I’ve been fortunate enough to play with some true professionals when it comes to that role and guys that are stars in their role. Dudz is another one of those guys,” LeBron James said.

“Whatever the team needs — I mean literally, whatever the team needs — he is ready for whatever, both on and off the floor. That is a diamond in the rough to have for a championship-aspiring ballclub. Dudz has been that for us the last two years.”

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Wesley Matthews added: “He’s always ready. Dudz is one of those guys who is ready for whatever moment. He energizes on the bench, when his name is called he’s ready, he’s going to be in the right spot. Dudz is a great player.”

When the Lakers first signed Dudley, the move was met with some anger and dissatisfaction among fans, but he has proven to be a valuable member of the roster even when not seeing the floor too often.

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Dudley understands his role and knows that he is unlikely to play big minutes, but gives his all in practice and helps to mentor young players.

Unfortunately, he has yet to play since that Bulls game due to right calf soreness.

Dudley ‘happy but not satisfied’ with Kyle Kuzma’s growth

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One of Dudley’s biggest projects last season was to assist Kyle Kuzma. While Dudley does believe the young forward has improved, he noted there is still plenty room to grow.

“I’m happy but I’m not satisfied. He can be a lot better,” Dudley recently said. “The reason I was impressed, young guys get discouraged with less minutes and shot attempts. He wasn’t. He wanted to win a championship.

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“I’m happy with him, you’re a champion. But now, let’s go make yourself a 17-, 18-point scorer, efficient, a better defensive player and let’s lean on you more in playoff time.”

Home / Media / Jared Dudley gives insightful perspective on Kevin Porter Jr.’s blowup with Cavs
Jared Dudley gives insightful perspective on Kevin Porter Jr.’s blowup with Cavs
By Brad Sullivan

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Updated: January 18, 2021
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In the aftermath of the controversy involving the Cleveland Cavaliers and second-year guard Kevin Porter Jr., Los Angeles Lakers forward Jared Dudley offered a realistic perspective of the NBA and its connection with the media.

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Porter has been banned from the Cavaliers’ practice facility and is expected to either be traded or released by the team. The decision stems from a heated confrontation with Cavaliers general manager Koby Altman after Porter’s locker was shifted to accommodate one of the team’s new additions, Taurean Prince.

Porter played one season at the University of Southern California, seeing action in 21 games and also being suspended over his off-the-court behavior.

As a rookie with the Cavaliers last season, Porter largely behaved, but problems developed last fall. That was when Porter posted a disturbing social media post that hinted at suicide and was also involved in a scary auto accident.

Due to those issues, Porter had yet to take the court for the Cavaliers this season, but was at the team’s game last Friday against the New York Knicks.

Porter’s locker reassignment was done in part to deal with the continuing COVID-19 safety protocols the NBA has in place. Yet, it’s clear that Porter perceived the move as an insult and erupted at Altman.

The actual source of who leaked the locker room controversy remains unknown. However, as Dudley noted, that source likely had a reason for veering from the tradition of keeping such embarrassing incidents out of the public spotlight.

For Porter, his past behavior and bumpy departure could make the market for his services a slim one. The hope is that he’s able to bounce back and eventually take the court again with another team.