With now less than a week to go before the NBA Trade Deadline, there is plenty to prognosticate about. Add to that Shaquille O’Neal giving his two cents on Ben Simmons and the Lakers once again losing to the Clippers in an “away” game, and this week’s “The Hook” was always going to be extra packed.
Then, as if the typical news cycle isn’t enough, right when we finished recording an already 40-minute episode, we got what might be one of the first dominos to fall as we get ready for a busy week ahead. Thanks, Woj. Really appreciate the timing.
In the first episode we released today, Aaron and I started with O’Neal going in on Simmons, and specifically what he had to say about the impact Simmons’ hold out might have for future players looking to get paid and maintain some flexibility. Say what you will about Shaq’s commitment to some of his teammates while he played, but you can’t really second guess his business acumen.
From there, we dove into trade deadline predictions both for the Lakers and league-wide. According to Aaron (who has a pretty good feel for these things), Lakers fans probably shouldn’t get their hopes up too high.
We wrapped part one on Aaron’s observations from a Clippers home game that shifted very quickly to a Lakers home game as soon as the Lakers went on a run. He was sitting right by the Clippers’ bench and overheard some interesting tidbits, including how Ty Lue made sure to keep reminding his guys to attack one Laker in particular.
As mentioned above, once Woj reported today’s trade, both Aaron and I agreed we had to react. The plan was to add a few minutes to the end of today’s episode, but as we normally do, we went a little long.
While it’s certainly more complicated than this, today’s trade made a Clippers team that already just beat the Lakers and are ahead of them in the standings even better. And not just this year, but also moving forward, so long as Steve Ballmer is willing to pay up. It’s becoming incredibly clear that if the Lakers want to compete with their co-tenants at The Crypt, they’ll have to open up their pocket books.
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And for a short-form recap pod, check out Lakers Lowdown, in which Anthony Irwin recaps the previous day’s news and gets you ready for the day ahead in LakerLand, every weekday morning on the Silver Screen & Roll Podcast feed.