Musings of a Converted Laker Fan
I used to hate the Lakers. Hate is understating it. I do have much more disdain towards the Spurs, having rooted for the Suns since Steve Nash went back to the desert. I will never ever forget the heartache of seeing Metta World Peace (then named Ron Artest) making the putback off a Kobe airball in game of 6 of their Western Conference Finals and propelling the Lakers to the Finals and Kobe got his fifth ring.
I used to hate Kobe Bryant. I was rooting for Allen Iverson back when they faced each other in the 2001 NBA Finals. Though that’s a thing of the past since he visited an orphanage in Manila and I got to see a different side of Kobe, a side I have since liked.
I am sucker for rooting for the Underdog. But this time I have no choice but to root for a powerhouse. Call me a converted Laker fan. Where Steve Nash goes, I follow.
Now with Dwight Howard finally going to the Lakers, they are now the Top Dog in the Western Conference, at least on paper. But the big thing here is that anyone who has played with Steve Nash has always had a career year. Just ask Boris Diaw, Jared Dudley, to name a few. The most critical part of the trade is that of Pau Gasol no longer being included in the trade. I would rather have Pau Gasol over Al Harrington any day. Add to the mix Antawn Jamison coming off the bench. Somewhere I can see Grant Hill shaking his head. With this trade, he certainly wishes he chose the other team in LA.
Big key though is how much is Kobe willing to sacrifice. How much is he willing to shoot less and make more plays now that he has this lineup around him. Kobe Bryant would do everything just to get back on the mountaintop again. Another key is the Lakers changing to the Princeton offense. They hired former Sixers and Wizards coach Eddie Jordan to facilitate the Princeton offense. I think that Andrew Bynum would have fared better but I will give Dwight Howard some leeway here. There’s a big difference with playing with Steve Nash than playing with Jameer Nelson and a big difference with playing with a Kobe Bryant and playing with a Jason Richardson. Given Steve Nash’s history with making other players around him better, chances of Dwight Howard having a disappointing season are slim.
Right now Miami is at the top of the mountain. But with this trade, they surely would have the Lakers in their minds all season. Let’s get one for Steve and one more for Kobe! This is one of the happiest days of my life as a Steve Nash fan and as a basketball fan in general. Now all Laker fans say Amen.