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Laker Bench

June 8, 1985
Anyone who thinks Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is too old to run up and down court with other players should remember he shares the same age (38) with the fastest distance runner on earth, Carlos Lopes of Portugal. BRAD KEARNS Woodland Hills
November 19, 2013 | By Eric Pincus
One of the early surprises this year for the Lakers (5-7) has been the play of Jordan Hill. Coach Mike D'Antoni promoted Hill to the starting lineup last Tuesday and the 26-year-old forward/center has responded with averages of 18.8 points and 12 rebounds over four games. While Hill has helped the starting unit, the Lakers' bench has had some difficulty playing without him - specifically point guard Jordan Farmar. "When I took Jordan Hill off the second group and put him on the first group, Farmar went into a tailspin," said D'Antoni after the Lakers' victory over the Detroit Pistons.
April 9, 2005 | Mike Bresnahan, Times Staff Writer
It was the Lakers at their best, in a season that has been one of their worst. Vlade Divac looked healthy and spry. Kobe Bryant couldn't miss. Caron Butler provided another peek at the future. Brian Grant jostled down low, taking rebounds and completing three-point plays. All in all, the Lakers offered a tease, a parallel-universe glance at what could have been this season.
October 30, 2013 | By Melissa Rohlin
In some ways the Lakers are a hobbled version of last season's team. Dwight Howard is gone. Kobe Bryant is sidelined as he rehabilitates his Achilles' tendon injury. Steve Nash is nearly 40. Then there's the bench. Last year the Lakers' bench ranked 28th out of the 30 NBA teams in scoring with 26 points a game. In Tuesday's 116-103 win over the Clippers, the Lakers reserves had 76 points. It was the reserves' third-highest scoring game in franchise history. They had 85 points in 1985 against Golden State and 84 points again against the Warriors in 1988.
April 23, 2000 | TIM KAWAKAMI
STARTERS: EDGE, LAKERS However dangerous the combination of Chris Webber, Jason Williams and Vlade Divac can be to the Lakers, one fact leaps out in this matchup: Shaquille O'Neal (35.3 points a game) and Kobe Bryant (30.5) destroyed the Kings in the four-game regular-season series and it's hard to see a way for Sacramento to shut them down. The Lakers did, however, get out of sync at times against the Kings, averaging 16 turnovers.
December 21, 2002
Here's a Phil-osphical question. If Phil Jackson just stopped showing up on the Laker bench, would anybody notice? Gary Schwind Huntington Beach As a former Chicagoan now in L.A. for some time, I can only chuckle at the drubbing Phil Jackson and his Lakers get. How can anything negative be said about a man who brings you three championships in the only three years he has coached the team? Phil not "really coaching?" Maybe as an ex-player and 10-time NBA champion, he has an understanding of the excruciatingly long haul that the NBA season can be. Shaq "should have had his surgery sooner?"
April 8, 2006 | Mike Bresnahan, Times Staff Writer
The Phoenix Suns did their thing, running up and down the court, flicking three-pointers toward the rim whenever humanly possible, and the Lakers did their best to hang before finally setting in the fourth quarter. It was entertaining, as it usually is when the Suns are involved, but the Lakers suffered their second road loss in as many nights against a playoff team, which they still aren't officially.
Well, that was a nice home stand, wasn't it? The Lakers dropped by the Forum between trips Sunday night to find the Dallas Mavericks, served up on a plate by the schedule, and polished them off, 103-88, to move into a virtual tie with the Warriors for first place in the Pacific. "The home stand was great," Coach Mike Dunleavy said. "It was really nice." Said Sam Perkins: "It was cool." Not to mention short. Returning from a 12-day trip, the Lakers now must play Tuesday in Sacramento.
October 29, 2013 | By Eric Pincus
Lakers 116 - Clippers 103 (end of regulation) The Lakers upset the Clippers on Tuesday night at Staples Center, opening the season with a stunning bench performance. Heading into the fourth quarter with a four-point deficit, the combination of Jordan Farmar, Jodie Meeks, Xavier Henry, Wesley Johnson and Jordan Hill completely overwhelmed the Clippers. Henry led all scorers with a career-high 22 points on 8-of-13 shooting. Farmar had 16 with six assists. Coach Mike D'Antoni stuck with the lineup through the entire period, letting the group close out against the Clippers' stars.
September 6, 2013 | Helene Elliott
Jordan Farmar had to leave, had to distance himself from Los Angeles and the Lakers, before he could realize he belongs here and that nothing would feel as good to him as wearing purple and gold. Farmar, a product of Woodland Hills Taft High and two years at UCLA, began his career with the Lakers and contributed to their title runs in 2009 and 2010 as a backup point guard. He departed as a free agent but has come home again at 26, more confident and mature. "I'm in a great place," he said a few days ago, meaning not just Southern California but the mind-set he developed the last three years.
January 21, 2013 | By Mike Bresnahan
CHICAGO - Pau Gasol's up-and-down season continued Monday. He's no longer a starter. Coach Mike D'Antoni said it was a "gut feeling" to put Earl Clark alongside Dwight Howard in the Lakers' starting lineup for Monday's game against the Chicago Bulls. Not to mention that Howard and Gasol haven't played well together on the court, D'Antoni said. A throw-in from Orlando in the Howard trade last August, Clark has been a revelation this month since entering the Lakers' rotation and then the starting lineup for four games.
November 25, 2012 | By Mike Bresnahan
Chris Duhon walked toward the Lakers' bench during a timeout, saw a group of reporters sitting nearby and yelled at them. "Second unit!" he said, accompanying it with a wink during a solid in-game run by the Lakers' reserves. Yes, he has read about it too. The Lakers' backups have been anything but supportive, so inept that the starters have racked up huge minutes four weeks into the season. It's generally unwise to count two games as a trend, but the bench wasn't half bad over the holiday weekend.
November 16, 2012 | By Eric Pincus
New Coach Mike D'Antoni addressed a wide array of topics at his introductory Lakers news conference Thursday. One issue the team has had so far this season is getting bench production, especially at shooting guard from Jodie Meeks and Devin Ebanks. D'Antoni seemed to have confidence that he'll get the most out of the entire roster. "Jodie Meeks, for example, I told him today the only time he needs to shoot is when he touches the ball; other than that, don't shoot," D'Antoni joked.
November 8, 2012 | By Mike Bresnahan
SALT LAKE CITY — Can a bench be benched? Probably not. But the Lakers need to do something about their reserves after having been again pounded by an opponent. Utah won the battle of the backups Wednesday, 36-12, yet another reason the Lakers lost to the Jazz, 95-86. Lakers Coach Mike Brown insisted a day earlier that he still believed in the reserves, saying, "I am confident in the guys. " No reporters asked him about the second unit after Wednesday's game. And if they did, there was no way Brown could have answered with as much conviction.
November 7, 2012 | By Mike Bresnahan
Almost every Lakers coach has said it since 1996, with the exception of Del Harris . He was lucky enough to get a young, vibrant Kobe Bryant . Phil Jackson , in his second tour with the Lakers, wanted to limit Bryant's playing time. So does current coach Mike Brown . Rudy Tomjanovich might have wanted the same thing too, but his tenure was, uh, a little short. Lakers coaches say they want to curb Bryant's chances of injury and stress on a now-34-year-old body that has logged 51,166 career minutes.
October 17, 2012 | By Mark Medina
Anytime the Lakers reserves stepped on the floor, an offensive drought ensued. They would cough up leads. They'd go on long stretches without a field goal. The Lakers were left wondering who would lead them out of the darkness. The team believed they had solved that problem by adding 15-year veteran Antawn Jamison, who's averaged a career 19.5 points both as a starter and a reserve. The Lakers acquired this piece at the veteran's minimum, no less. Yet through four preseason games, Jamison has hardly provided such scoring punch, averaging only 5.8 points on 27.6% shooting.
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