Tag Archives: Kobe Bryant

Lakers or Clippers Tickets Giveaway

Battle Of LA Contest

BOLA Contest

The 14-22 Los Angeles Lakers take on Blake Griffin and the 25-13 LA Clippers at the LA Staples Center tonight at 7:30pm. The Clippers, have home court tonight and are coming off back-to-back wins without Chris Paul. Tickets for tonight’s Lakers Vs Clippers game are still available with no service fees!

Your chance to win tickets to an upcoming game?

Vanessa Won Clippers Tickets

Won Clippers Tickets

Congrats to Vanessa Gutierrez she won a free pair of Clippers Tickets!

Battle Of Los Angeles

Which Team Would You Want to See?

To Enter: (Hashtag) #barrystickets as well as the team you would want to see either #clipperstickets or #lakerstickets via your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, G+ account or below and you could win tickets to see either the Lakers or Clippers play at the Staples Center! No purchase necessary!

Winner will be able to select a game from various dates available. Tickets must be picked up the night of the game from our downtown office by the winner and winner must show legal identification. If a winner is not able or chooses not to accept prize “as is”, winner forfeits his/her prize, and Barry’s Ticket Service reserves the right to select another winner.

Rules: No Entries accepted after 7:15pm January 10th 2014! To be eligible entry must have #barrystickets and #lakerstickets or #clipperstickets. All entries will be placed in a random drawing and the winner will be contacted and announced on this blog post on Monday January 13th 2014. Any edits or picks after 7:15pm January 10th 2014 will be forfeited! Facebook, Twitter, G+, Instagram and Disquss all use time stamps so we are able to see the exact time of post as well as editing of posts

Contest does not include lodging or transportation to or from the LA Staples Center. Please read all Rules before entering:

Barry’s Tickets reserves the right to change a promotion at anytime. No purchase necessary Barry’s Tickets Service is an Official Partner of the Los Angeles Clippers. Only One Barrys Bucks/Discount Code/Promotional Code may be used per transaction.By:Chris Michaels.

Barry’s Ticket Service has been buying and selling Lakers Tickets and Clippers Tickets with NO SERVICE FEES since 1985 and is located caddy-corner from the Staples Center. All Tickets come with a 100% guarantee that they are Authentic and will be delivered on time!

Barry’s Tickets is located just caddy-corner from the LA Staples Center:
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Should Steve Nash Call It A Career?

Should Steve Nash Retire

Steve Nash

Steve Nash will have to eventually face reality. The Canadian point guard is currently the oldest player in the league. He is turning 40 in February and his overall production has been going south the last couple of seasons. In fact, he never was able to play as he used to since he joined forces with Kobe Bryant and Dwight Howard in the City of Angels. Due to a series of injuries Nash wasn’t really able to be the dominant player he once was during this Phoenix Suns era. Now, after all the drama the Lakers and Nash have gone through, it might be the right time for him to consider retirement.

After appearing in just six games into the season, Nash went down with an injury on November 10, in game where the Lakers played against the Minnesota Timberwolves. Ever since, Nash has been struggling to find his health and return on the courts. Due to a series of setbacks still remains sidelined and he is expected to be out for about one more month. The next time Nash will be re-evaluated and maybe gets the clearance to return to action is somewhere around February. Nonetheless, maybe it’s not wise for him to wait that long. He should consider taking the decision to retire sooner than later.

Nash’s production has fallen significantly over the course of the last couple of seasons. The Canadian point guard is a career 49.0 percent shooter from the field and also 42.8 percent from three-point territory. In his 17-year career he averaged 14.3 point per contest, 8.5 assists and 3.0 boards.

Should Steve Nash retire

Retire?

Last season, he appeared in just 50 games and he put up 12.7 points to go along with 6.7 dimes and also 2.8 boards per game. Except for the change in his production, Mike D’Antoni assigned Nash with a role he wasn’t accustomed to play. He didn’t have many ball-handling responsibilities. He didn’t setup the team.

Kobe was the main facilitator of the team, while Nash became spot up shooter.
As Steve Nash recently stated, his target currently is to get back healthy and help his team move forward. He wants to be able to contribute. Nonetheless, is this the best decision he has to take?

Of course, it would be great for both Nash and the Lakers if he somehow managed to get his game back to the All-Star level he retained a few years back. Nonetheless, this doesn’t seem likely. So the best option for him at the moment seems to be to call it a career, hang his shoes and go on with his off-NBA life.
It’s much better for him if all the fans remembered him as one of the best point guards to ever play in the league. Nash certainly ranks amongst the top 10 point guards of all time. But at present, the only thing he does is he damages his fame, the way NBA fans remember of him.

All things come to an end. Nash’s career has obviously reached its dawn. It’s time for him to acknowledge it and take action.By:Chris Michaels.

Discount Code For Lakers Tickets

Lakers Tickets Discount

You can save on Lakers Tickets in 2014 by using our Discount Code LAKE2014 at checkout! Barry’s Tickets has no service fees on ANY tickets!

Barry’s Tickets is located just caddy-corner from the LA Staples Center:
1020 S. Figueroa, Los Angeles, CA 90015
(across from the Staples Center inside the Luxe City Center)
Open 7 days a week, 10am – 9pm, for pickups.
(213)749-0057
Published by Barry’s Ticket Service.

The Lakers Without Kobe Bryant

Kobe Bryant LA Lakers

Kobe

The six-month wait for Kobe Bryant to return from his Achilles injury was short-lived. The Lakers superstar was slowly working his way back into shape before injury struck again a week ago Tuesday versus the Memphis Grizzlies. Bryant’s knee injury was suffered in the third quarter. The optimism the Lakers saw in Bryant’s improved play has he rounded into form was quickly scuttled once again. Bryant’s fracture of the lateral tibial plateau in the same leg he suffered his Achilles tear has put Bryant on the shelf for an additional six weeks that will carry through into the All Star break. The injury has made many question the wisdom of Bryant returning at all this season. The Lakers superstar reiterated his determination to play again this season, which he will likely do. The latest injury, although clearly not season ending, has once again made many question the Lakers decision to extend Bryant for two additional seasons beyond this year.

The Lakers have re-upped Bryant so it’s pointless to debate the merits of the deal. The club may have over-paid for the player that Bryant is at this point in his career, but you have to admire their interest in rewarding their superstar for what he’s done for the franchise. In a difficult Western Conference it’s difficult to see the Lakers competing for one of the final playoff spots. Los Angeles currently sits at 12th in the west, in a solid group of teams that includes Denver, Minnesota, New Orleans and Memphis. The Dallas and Phoenix greatly improved the already competitive west has become even tougher. With the Lakers playoff chances dim does it make sense to sit Bryant the entire regular season?

Kobe Bryant Los Angeles Lakers

Kobe Bryant

Actually getting the famously competitive Bryant to sit out the season is a challenge in itself, but the idea of sitting Bryant does make some sense. Without Bryant the Lakers were surprisingly competitive due to the roster decisions they made in the offseason. An entire year off would give Bryant the ability to truly recover, both from the knee injury and the Achilles. There is no indication that the two injuries are related but Bryant has now suffered two major injuries on the same leg in the past eight months. A fully recovered Bryant, even if he’s diminished athletically, will allow the Lakers to achieve the max value out of his two-year extension. During the remainder of the regular season the club can take a long look at some of the younger players (Wes Johnson, Nick Young, Jordan Farmar) that have helped ignite them this season. The combination of a potential lottery big and any value the club can get for Pau Gasol in a potential trade will give the Lakers even more versatility next season.

The Lakers fan base can tolerate a subpar season to build for the future. A fully recovered Bryant and a solid draft pick can do wonders for the franchise as they move into next season. Meanwhile let’s sit back and enjoy this year’s team, who though far less talented are a lot more entertaining than last year’s Dwight Howard centered club. By:Chris Michaels.

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Do the Lakers Need Some Love?

Kevin Love LA Lakers

Kevin Love

The Los Angeles Lakers are constantly searching for ways to shake things up. They are exploring trade scenarios, they are looking for their next superstar. They will have to find a way to turn things around and stop their descent.

The team might make a move soon, this summer or eventually the next one. But it will make a move, a big move, that’s what the Lakers have always done. LA needs to find the player who will lead the franchise to the post-Kobe Bryant era. Kevin Love might be exactly that player.

Love could be the perfect fit for the Los Angeles Lakers. He could be the superstar the team needs.

The 25-year old power forward has a contract that expires no sooner than the summer of 2016, but he does have a player option for the last year of his contract. If he chooses to opt-out, he could be a really hot target for the Lakers.

Although the Lakers would be eager to land him sooner, the team doesn’t have the assets to offer the Timberwolves. So such a deal would never work.

Kevin Love trade

Love

Nevertheless, Minnesota signed Love to a four-year deal, when they could have offered him a maximum five-year contract. That seemed to bother Love a bit, whilst he wasn’t dissatisfied with the deal, of course. Nonetheless, Love certainly is not 100 percent happy in Minnesota. It’s not just about money. The team still hasn’t found a way to reach the highest level of competiveness.

Love’s addition by the Lakers only makes sense for the team. The departure of Dwight Howard and the rejection of the Chris Paul trade from the NBA left the Lakers with little hopes of finding the next big thing, their next superstar.

Love has many ties with Los Angeles. He was born in Santa Monica and he attended UCLA. There is an obvious link between the Lakers and Love. It’s growing constantly. However, Lakers fans will have to wait for this process to evolve.

For now, Love is just showing a bit of his talents to the Lakers fans, to the entire franchise. That’s what he did during the Lakers – Wolves meeting, earlier this season, when he put up points in bunches and sank one three-pointer after another.

Lakers Kevin Love trade

Laker Love

There not many more options for the Lakers in the market. LeBron James most probably will stay in Miami, where he will have the chance be a member of a winning organization and play alongside his buddy, Dwyane Wade.

Carmelo Anthony is another tough case. Melo is in the middle of his prime and the last thing he wants is to become a part of a one-star franchise. That’s what the Lakers are projected to become after Kobe retires. Melo has been in a similar situation, when he was a member of the Denver Nuggets.

The addition of Kevin Love is one that only makes sense for both the Lakers and the 25-year old superstar. Time will tell if this will become reality. By:Chris Michaels.

How Much Are Lakers Tickets?

Lakers Tickets Staples Center

Lakers Tickets

How Much Are Lakers Tickets? Prices on Lakers Tickets can very on different factors. If Kobe Bryant is playing prices on Lakers Tickets usually run high, prices also depend on who the Lakers are playing. If the Lakers are playing the Miami Heat or the Toronto Raptors can mean a difference in 20-30% price wise.

Let’s look at some of the games. The Miami Heat are always one of the biggest draws in the NBA when they come to town. The Lakers face the Heat without Kobe on Dec 25th at the Staples Center prices with Kobe playing started about $250 per ticket for 300 level seats and without Kobe playing they have dropped to $150 per ticket.

When the Lakers play some of the stronger opponents such as the Indiana Pacers, Chicago Bulls, Oklahoma City Thunder and Houston Rockets Upper Level Seats can start on average about $45 to $65 per ticket, 200 level seats on average can run between $125- $175 per ticket. Premiere Level Seats which come with waitress service, access to the Bar as well as a VIP Entrance can start at $195 a ticket and go to about $280 per ticket on average. Lower Level tickets from $155 to $725 a ticket. Courtside Tickets for a Lakers game can run anywhere from $2500 a ticket to $7000 a ticket.

If your wondering how much are Lakers Tickets when they play teams such as the Wizards, Pelicans, Bobcats (soon to be the Hornets), Cavaliers or Milwaukee Bucks ticket prices drop. “Get in the doors” or 300 level ticket prices can start at about $35 per ticket on up to $70 per ticket. Middle Level Behind in the 200 levels can start at $92 and go to $149. Middle Level Premiere seats $148 per ticket to about 195 a ticket and lower level seats $125 to $615 per ticket in section 111 which is dead center court. Courtside seats for these types of teams run $1500 to $3500 a ticket.

How to get free Lakers Tickets

Free Lakers Tickets

Do you guys ever have free Lakers Tickets? The best way to find out when we have free Lakers tickets is to follow Barry’s Tickets on any one of our social networks (Facebook, twitter, Instagram and Google Plus) where we run contests weekly giving away free Lakers tickets, Lakers merchandise, and Barry’s Bucks which are good on Lakers Tickets as well as all Concert, Sports and Theater Tickets. You can also sign up to receive emails regarding special free Laker Tickets giveaways and contests as well as discounts on Lakers Tickets. The best chance to get free Lakers Tickets is at the beginning of the Lakers Season and even Pre Season games.

Lakers Tickets discount codes and Lakers Tickets promo codes when available can be found on our blog posts, social media pages and well as exclusive discounts in our emails. Barry’s Tickets has offered 75% off on Lakers Tickets discount codes down to $10% off on tickets, Save $15 off of tickets when you spend a minimum of $100 as well as save $25 off when you spend a minimum of $100. In order to save on tickets you use the Lakers Tickets discount codes and Lakers Tickets promo codes at the checkout on BarrysTickets.com.

How Can I Buy Cheap Lakers Tickets? It depends on what you consider as Cheap. The actual face value of Lakers Tickets can run up to and over $300 per ticket from the box office so finding actual “cheap Lakers tickets” isn’t as easy at is seems. Many brokers advertise fake amounts such as $90% off Lakers Tickets and show a cheap price when you first look at their prices but have as much as a 35% service fee at the end of the transaction. Since Barry’s Tickets has the largest physical inventory of Lakers Tickets online we are able to offer Lakers Tickets as cheap as possible and with no service or hidden fees on any tickets. By:Chris Michaels


Chris Michaels
Senior editor at Barry’s Tickets

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Los Angeles, CA
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Barry’s Tickets

Lakers Heat Christmas Day What To Expect

Kobe Lebron Christmas

Kobe Lebron

Over the past week the Los Angeles Lakers have slowly integrated Kobe Bryant back into the lineup, after his six-month absence due to a torn Achilles. Los Angeles is 2-4 since the return of Bryant, but is coming off of a solid road victory over the Memphis Grizzlies. The Lakers will have three more games to tune up for their big Christmas Day game versus the Miami Heat. Due to their incredible success under Kobe Bryant the Lakers have been a regular participant on Christmas Day for years with many memorable games. This year will be no exception when the Lakers welcome in Lebron James and the two-time defending NBA Champion Miami Heat into STAPLES Center. Much maligned after his exit from Cleveland, James has taken his already incredible game to an even higher level this season, operating at an offensive efficiency that few players in league history have ever achieved.

Here’s a look at what to expect when Miami visits the Lakers on Christmas Day:

Expect to pay an arm and leg for Lakers Vs Heat Tickets on Christmas Day. Prices for Lakers Tickets on Christmas Day against the World Champion Miami Heat can run roughly two and a half times the average game. A 300 level “get in the door” ticket usually will cost about $90 per ticket but for the Lakers Vs Heat they can run $215 per ticket. A 200 level for the Lakers Vs 76ers is about $168 per ticket but the same section (207) for the Heat is about $566.00 per ticket. Dead Center section 111 row B for an average game can run $625.00 per ticket and for the Lakers Vs Heat it is about $1750-$2000 per ticket. If prices are to steep and after your done opening presents you can always go down to the Staples Center to checkout LA Live and the crowd around the Venue then hop into our office next to the Staples Center and see if there is last minute tickets available at a cheaper price.

King James Lebron

King James

Lebron James is really, really, really good: With Lebron James ascending to levels that few have reached, fellow stars Dywane Wade and Chris Bosh have taken a back seat to the Heat superstar. James is shooting just under 60% and 41% from behind the three point line. Under the leadership of Erik Spoelstra, James has refined his game to maximum efficiency, shooting from select spots on the floor, while maximizing his unique passing skills and vision. Considering how well he’s played the last two seasons it’s hard to fathom that James continues to get better as a player. Dywane Wade, who nearly singlehandedly won an NBA title in 2005, has dealt with chronic knee pain over the past three seasons and has to play in spurts, typically missing back-to-back games and playing fewer minutes this season. Bosh has carved out a secondary role that emphasizes his unique ability to extend the floor as a shooting big man, helping make the Heat ball-movement offense work.

The Lakers are a lot more fun to watch: Last year’s debacle, where the Lakers barely made the playoffs after being touted as a title contender coming into the season, was a failure on multiple fronts. Beyond the underachievement of the team was the fact that Los Angeles just wasn’t fun to watch. The Lakers offense was stagnant and plodding due to their lack of youth and multiple players (like Gasol) playing out of position. This year’s club may not be as talented but they’re a lot younger and a lot more fun to watch. Mitch Kupchak has done a good job infusing life into the lineup on a limited budget.

Miami has built a solid core: General Manager Pat Riley has smartly built a veteran core around James, Wade and Bosh through smart moves and veterans taking reduced contracts. Shane Battier is versatile defender often found guarding power forwards while providing grit on the boards and hitting the open three point shot. Ray Allen, perhaps the greatest three point shooter in league history, hit one of the biggest clutch shots in league history last season to send game six of the NBA finals to overtime. The ageless Allen helps extend the floor as one of eight legitimate Heat three-point shooting threats. The Heat shoots just under 39% as a team from behind the three point line.

The surprising evolution of Michael Beasley: Perhaps the most interesting Heat acquisition is Michael Beasley, the former second overall pick who fizzled out in Minnesota and Phoenix. Beasley is a talented scorer who may have found a home during his second stint with Miami. He has an impressive PER of 22.1 while averaging 11.4 points per game in just 17 minutes played. Beasley is shooting a lights out 55% from the field and 50% from behind the three point line.

Kobe the Distributor: During his re-insertion into the lineup Bryant has often taken a secondary role, more of a classical “point-forward”, looking to make the extra pass. As he gets comfortable athletically his shot volume should increase and he should once again be the go-to guy down the stretch. Bryant hasn’t quite found the rhythm yet, but his minutes and offensive contribution is increasing.

Lakers Miami Tickets

Lakers Miami

Any Kobe Bryant and Lebron James matchup is a big deal with this year’s game being perhaps more anticipated than in years past. The STAPLES Center crowd and the national television audience should eagerly tune in to see how Bryant, coming off a potentially career ending injury, can match up with the reigning champions. Expect a great deal of energy from the Lakers, especially from their athletic youngsters like Wesley Johnson and Nick Young. With Pau Gasol the Lakers will have an advantage over the smallish Heat interior and will need to exploit the big Spaniard’s advantage in the post to offset the difficult Heat “small-ball” attack. Look for a spirited effort from the Lakers, especially Bryant, as they play in front of a national television audience. By:Chris Michaels

Should the Lakers Trade Pau Gasol?

Pau Gasol Trade

Pau Gasol

Amidst the excitement around the return of Kobe Bryant, recent comments by Pau Gasol have reminded the Lakers organization that the veteran big man is still not 100% comfortable in the Mike D’Antoni offensive system. Thursday Gasol vented to the press his frustration about not getting the ball in the post and how that directly affects his aggressiveness. Even with Dwight Howard in Houston and not taking up space in the post it’s clear that Gasol still isn’t completely happy with his role in the current incarnation of the Lakers offense.

With one-year left on his contract and an option for next season the Lakers have a decision to make that could directly impact the remainder of this season and have big implications on the club’s immediate future. On one hand the Lakers have a proven commodity in Gasol, a veteran big man who’s still among the top 10 centers in the National Basketball Association. The Lakers are still in contention, albeit battling a large group of teams for the final couple of playoff positions in the ultra competitive Western Conference. Due to his expiring contract Gasol is a prime trade target. He can help a contending team immediately and the fact his contract can be off the books after this season makes him an interesting commodity. In re-signing Kobe Bryant for two more seasons at a dollar amount that many nationally thought was a bit steep the Lakers have reduced their flexibility to attract immediate offseason help. The decision on whether or not to keep

Gasol will likely rest on how he plays out the season and whether or not he finds a comfortable place in the D’Antoni system.

According to published reports the Lakers haven’t had any trade discussions with other teams, but there are a few compelling options out there. The Lakers will have to balance the need to get production from Gasol but also weigh any interest to move him for future flexibility, or immediate talent. All indications are the club has interest in Gasol beyond this season, but they also want to maintain their ability to attract a top free agent over the next handful of off-seasons when several such players may become available, including Lebron James and former UCLA star Kevin Love. The issue with trading Gasol immediately is the reality that the Lakers may not get a solid return. One compelling potential option is Los Angeles native Tyson Chandler. The Knick big man has two years and just over $28 million left on his contract. The perennial Defensive Player of the Year candidate provides energy and shot blocking and doesn’t require the club to run plays for him.

According to ESPN Carlos Boozer is also available and has a similar contract as Chandler, but the value of Boozer at this point is questionable. Any other trade speculation is nothing but rumor at this point since there are no indications the Lakers have had discussions with anyone.

Pau Gasol

Gasol

Gasol’s own comments on Friday indicated that his venting may have been more frustration and not an outright plea to be traded. During Friday’s shoot-around prior to the Oklahoma City game Gasol indicated that each individual player has to make themselves responsible for their energy and play on the court, a shift in tone from the day before. Any decision to look to move Gasol in the near term would be a foolish decision by the Lakers. With Kobe Bryant back in the lineup the club will need a solid month to integrate their superstar back into the rotation. Bryant’s style of play since his return, with a much greater emphasis on getting his teammates involved, could bode well for Gasol. The eventual return of Steve Nash can also be a big factor in the Lakers realizing the lineup they envisioned when they went out and signed Steve Nash before last offseason.

The onus is also on Gasol to up his game. Until he proves that he’s the player he’s been in the past his trade value may suffer. The career 51% shooter is making shots at just over a 40% clip, an extremely poor conversion percentage for a big man. The 33-year-old Gasol has played a lot of basketball over the last decade, between deep Lakers playoff runs and a number of international basketball tournaments with Spain. With Kobe Bryant back the pressure is now on Gasol to step up and help the Lakers superstar put together a winning streak that can give them some breathing room in the playoff race. If Gasol can prove he’s still the player he was three years ago the Lakers will have a valuable asset to sign to an extension or convert into assets to build for the future. By:Chris Michaels

Lakers Finally Taste Victory With Kobe

Los Angeles Lakers

LA Lakers

With Kobe Bryant’s return to the lineup still a work in progress the Los Angeles Lakers lost consecutive games to Phoenix and Oklahoma City to start the week before rebounding with a huge Saturday night victory in Charlotte over the Bobcats. The Lakers are now 12th in the Western Conference with an 11-12 record, a half game behind the Minnesota Timberwolves in a bunched group of contenders.

Week Recap: After losing to the Toronto Raptors in Bryant’s debut the Lakers hosted the surprising Phoenix Suns at STAPLES Center on Tuesday night. The Sun ran out to a lead behind the solid play of point guard Goran Dragic and held off the Lakers fourth quarter comeback. Bryant score 20 points in 29 minutes of play, looking sharp in contrast to his Sunday debut. Bryant led a balanced Lakers attack and also notched three assists. The Lakers had three days off before traveling to Oklahoma City to take on Kevin Durant and the Thunder. Oklahoma City jumped out to a fifteen point halftime lead and never looked back, winning in impressive fashion. Bryant played the role of a distributor, attempting just six shots in 23 minutes, but notching 13 assists. The Lakers had no answer for Kevin Durant who scored 31 points on just 13 shots. With the Oklahoma City win the Lakers record with Bryant back in the lineup dropped to 0-3 and the loss set up a must win game Saturday night in Charlotte. The Lakers outscored the improving Bobcats by seven in the fourth quarter to notch a three point victory. Bryant led four Lakers in double figures with 21 points. Bryant nearly had a triple double with 8 assists and 7 rebounds to go with his 21 points. Pau Gasol and Jordan Hill had a solid night inside with 15 points each.

The Week Ahead: The Lakers continue their east coast road swing with a back to back Monday and Tuesday nights in Atlanta and Memphis. The Hawks are having a solid season in a very weak eastern conference and feature a solid trio of veterans in Jeff Teague, Al Horford and Paul Millsap. Memphis, a fifty-win team each of the past two seasons, is in the midst of a three-game losing streak including a Sunday night loss at home to the Minnesota Timberwolves. The Grizzlies are trying to make do with All Star center Marc Gasol. Following the Monday/Tuesday back-to-back the Lakers return home to STAPLES Center for a Friday night matchup versus Kevin Love and the Minnesota Timberwolves. Minnesota got off a hot start this season but has played .500 basketball of late. The combination of Ricky Rubio and Kevin Love gives Minnesota one of the best inside/outside duos in the NBA. After a short one game home stand Los Angeles makes a tough trip north to Golden State to take on Stephon Curry and the Warriors.By:Chris Michaels

Lakers Vs Heat Tickets

Lakers Vs Heat Tickets Discount Code

Christmas is coming! Save Now With Our Lakers Vs Heat Tickets Discount Code! Take $25.00 off your Christmas Day Lakers Heat Tickets using our Discount Code for the biggest game of the 2013-2014 NBA Season for the LA Lakers!

Five Reasons To Be Optimistic About The Lakers

Kobe Bryant Returns

Kobe

A little over a month into the 2013-2014 NBA season there’s a general feeling off positivity among the Lakers fan base. This year’s Lakers club clearly isn’t a title contender but they’re also not the outright disaster that many predicted. With Kobe Bryant rumored to be making his season debut Friday night versus the Sacramento Kings at Sleep Train Arena in Sacramento, things are looking up. Here are five reasons for optimism among the Lakers fan base.

1. The Return of Kobe Bryant: A week ago the Lakers locked up there superstar for two more years giving Lakers fans peace of mind that one of the franchises greatest players will play his entire career in Los Angeles. The two year contract extension will ensure the presence of Bryant as the Lakers complete this transition period. How effective Bryant will be on the court is still to be determined, but his legendary work ethic and intensity should have a positive effect on this year’s Lakers team. Young players such as Nick Young and Wesley Johnson should benefit from the return of Bryant, both from the presence of Bryant on the court and the example he sets in going about his business. Most importantly the presence of Bryant will give the Lakers a deadly option at the end of games. Los Angeles has been in most every game they’ve played of late but have lost some close due to fourth quarter fades. The presence of Bryant should give the Lakers the fourth quarter edge he’s provided throughout his legendary career.

2. They are fun to watch: By all accounts last season’s Lakers team simply wasn’t enjoyable to watch. With nearly a full season and an offseason to instill his system the Mike D’Antoni style is taking shape. General Manager Mitch Kupchak has done a fine job injecting life into the roster with limited resources. This year’s club is one of the more entertaining teams in the Western Conference. Nick Young gives them instant offense off the bench and has thrived in D’Antoni’s system. Former fourth overall pick Wesley Johnson is showing signs of the talent that made him such a high draft pick and provided major energy and athleticism on both ends of the court. Jordan Farmar is out for a month due to injury, but prior to getting hurt gave the Lakers excellent minutes off the bench.

3. Pau Gasol is Free: Playing Pau Gasol and Dwight Howard on the floor last season just didn’t work. The presence of Howard often made Gasol play in spots on the floor where he just wasn’t as effective or confident. With Howard in Houston, Gasol is no longer playing out of position and the 33-year-old veteran is back in the post and after a slow start is picking up his play. The absence of Howard has also allowed Jordan Hill to flourish. The former first round draft pick is playing the best basketball of his career and doing many of the things the Lakers envisioned from Howard. Hill’s constant hustle and grittiness has given the Lakers a positive companion to Gasol. The Lakers will get Chris Kaman back from injury this week, adding another big body and veteran post player back into the rotation. The trio of Gasol, Hill and Kaman gives the Lakers solid depth at a position where many of the contenders are lacking.

4. Mike D’Antoni: After much criticism last season the Lakers head coach has had a year to institute his system and the Lakers are showing very positive signs. As his time in Phoenix demonstrated D’Antoni often does his best job when expectations are low, as they were heading into this season. Whether the D’Antoni system can ever produce a title is debatable, but there’s no question that it is effective at times when he has the right mix of players. The potential X factor for Los Angeles is when and if Steve Nash can be effective again. Nash became an MVP in Phoenix under D’Antoni and he’s uniquely qualified to run the system. Steve Blake has done a great job in Nash’s absence but the potential return of their veteran point guard can be a huge factor in their ability to compete in the Western Conference as the season moves forward.

Of course the big criticism of any D’Antoni team is their inability to play defense. The Lakers are generally more athletic across the board this season but are still struggling defensively, ranked 27th in the league in points allowed. Granted their free-wheeling style contributes to defensive struggles but they’ll need to shore up the defensive unit as they get into the heart of the playoff race. Bryant, once a great defender, has struggled defensively in recent years and will likely struggle more due to the fact he’s coming off of injury.

5. They’ll be fresh down the stretch: The Lakers legitimately go eleven deep on their roster with Gasol leading the Lakers in minutes per game at just over 30. Los Angeles may not have a starting unit that can contend with Portland, the Los Angeles Clippers and the San Antonio Spurs but their strong depth will benefit them greatly in a long and arduous NBA season. This depth will also allow the Lakers to slowly work in Kobe Bryant when he returns, as well as Steve Nash if and when he finally comes back from his latest time off due to injury. As the season turns into the final third the Lakers, specifically their veteran players, should have legs that are fresher than many of the teams they’ll be competing against. Add in D’Antoni’s aggressive style and the Lakers should have many a fourth quarter edge on teams toward the end of the season. The increased minutes from the bench players should also build the confidence and comfort of many of the young players. As the Lakers near playoff time their rotation will surely tighten up, but the head coach will have a deep potential bench to rely on moving forward.

Share this article on Google, Facebook or Twitter and you could win a pair of Lakers Tickets! Just hashtag #kobereturns and your entered! By:Chris Michaels

Lakers Get Two More Years Of Kobe Bryant

Kobe Signs for Two Years

Kobe Bryant

In the midst of a three-game winning streak that’s brought them back up to the .500 mark at 7-7 the Los Angeles Lakers announced this morning that they have locked up Kobe Bryant on a two-year deal that will allow the superstar to finish his career with the Lakers. While they Lakers wait for their superstar to return from his ruptured Achilles tendon, Lakers management has ensured that Bryant will likely never play for another team and likely compile the longest single tenure with one team in league history. The two-year, $48.5 million deal will give the Lakers consistency as they continue their transition into a new era.

Locking up Bryant makes good business sense while sending a message to the current roster and the fan base that the team is committed this season and beyond. With Bryant out and Dwight Howard in Houston the Lakers have revamped their roster to try to inject some new life into what looked to be a stale squad. The Lakers will have difficulty stacking up against the best teams in the Western Conference but General Manager Mitch Kupchak has given Mike D’Antoni some new pieces to work with. The bench is younger and more athletic, with players like Nick Young, Xavier Henry, Chris Kaman and Jordan Farmar making solid contributions. The starting lineup, currently built around Pau Gasol until Bryant returns, has benefited lately from solid contributions by Jordan Hill, Steve Blake and Jodie Meeks. If Steve Nash can return and provide some solid minutes this season the Lakers, once Bryant returns, have the pieces to make a playoff run.

The fan base will be energized by the Lakers commitment in Bryant. Locking up their star rather than taking a potential amnesty route is a sign that the club expects Bryant to return and contribute to the success of the team. Bryant has been practicing for the past week and should make his return by the middle of December at the latest. If the Lakers can navigate their upcoming road trip successfully and stay around the .500 mark the return of Bryant should give the Lakers the boost needed to stay in contention the remainder of the season.

The deal also is a signal to potential free agents that the Lakers aren’t necessarily a rebuilding process. The Lakers still will have the Steve Nash contract on the books next season, but will have around $22 million to bring in a max free agent for next season. The big story around the league will be the potential of Lebron James leaving the Miami Heat by exercising his out clause. It’s hard to imagine James leaving the Heat for the Lakers, but the Lakers have pulled off such moves in the past. Beyond James though the free agent crop is pretty slim, making a potential sign and trade deal for another asset perhaps more of a reality. The other wildcard is what the Lakers decide to do with Pau Gasol. The Lakers big man has a cap hit of $20 million until he signs with the Lakers or someone else. They’ll have to access their options before they decide whether or not to bring Gasol back.

Whatever the Lakers decide to do this offseason they are committed to Bryant for the next two seasons as they transition into the next era of Lakers basketball

By:Chris Michaels