Kobe Bryant is one of the greatest player’s in the history of the NBA, but there is no denying that his career is on the down swing. Already with 5 NBA Championship trophies as well as an NBA MVP award, Kobe has proven that he is a glorified winner. Bryant turns 34 in August and unless you are the New York Knicks organization, you think that is getting too old for the NBA. In my estimation, Kobe has two great years ahead of him and then possibly 2-3 average years, but his window for winning his coveted sixth Championship is closing fast. The 14 time NBA all-star knows this and is all for his management putting together a Championship team for this season.
Jerry Buss and crew started their off-season magic with the best Free Agent signing of the year in Steve Nash. Unfortunately for the Lakers, they were more than just a quality PG short of winning the Championship last year. After acquiring Nash, Buss continued to look for the pieces that helped his team win 5 Championship’s since 2000. With some rumors flying, it seems as if the Lakers are about to sign Free Agent Antwan Jamison which will give them more great veteran leadership and a chameleon SF who pulls off the PF roll as well as anyone. While the former UNC Champion Jamison will bring a quality perimeter shot to the Lakers and add 7-9 rebounds a game depending on his minutes, his lack of defense will be a cause of huge concern for a team that prides itself on tenacious defending.
Nash has also been known for splotchy defense throughout his career and while Kobe has been named to numerous amounts of NBA all-defensive teams and Metta World Peace is literally willing to elbow someone in the face to stop them, the Lakers need more defense to win it all. Andrew Bynum might be one of the best up and coming Centers that the league has seen in a while, but his skill set still can not match up with Superman Dwight Howard’s. To win a Championship, you need big men defenders and while all the haters out there will say that Miami just won it all without a big man defender I will say that Lebron defends as well as anyone ever has…he is a freak and a player like him only comes around once every 20 years. I mean there hasn’t even been a PG Defensive Player of the Year since Gary “The Glove” Payton won it in 1996.
There is no better defender in the league than Dwight Howard and he will fit in perfectly with Mike Brown’s Lakers. Although Howard has stated multiple times that he only wants to sign an extension with the Brooklyn Nets, maybe he would be comforted knowing that signing with Kobe and the Lakers would pretty much guarantee him a trip to the NBA Championship. The loss of Bynum would be tough, but if Howard were to sign for at least 4 years than I’m pretty sure the Yellow and Purple will be able to cope with it. Howard can defend not only the opponents Center but he would also be able to shut down the players that coast past Nash and Jamison on a regular basis. Anyone that tries to say that Bynum has more potential than what Howard has to offer is a buffoon.
If Kobe combines forces with Nash, Gasol, Jamison and Howard, than there will be absolutely no one that has a starting 5 who can match up with them. If this team does form this superhero alliance than they will be ancient in 3 years, yet still younger than the Knicks current roster. The Lakers had to be planning on restructuring their entire team once Kobe’s career comes to an end anyway, so why not go out with a bang and win a couple of more Championships. For the NBA’s sake I hope this happens because I would like to see someone capable of putting out the Heat’s fire. If this move doesn’t happen than you can expect no more than a second round exit from the playoffs for the Lakers once again.