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Los Angeles Lakers Roster 2007-2008

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Kobe should be happy now...

  Kobe isn't happy

After the team was eliminated in the 1st round of the 2007 playoffs, Kobe Bryant asked to be traded because he wasn't happy with the Lakers roster... then he retracted... and then he said he still wanted to be traded... all in the same day...

The Lakers unwillingness to let Andrew Bynum go in trades for Jason Kidd or Jermaine O'Neal, and the bad will of former Celtic player Kevin McHale to trade for Garnett (who was sent to Boston in an horrendous trade for the Wolves) left the roster to start the season almost identical to the previous year with the exception of the return of Derek Fisher.

But the incredible ahead-of-schedule growth of Bynum and Jordan Farmar and the surprising trade that brought Pau Gasol suddenly made this a championship-caliber roster that should be more than enough for Kobe to be happy.

Here you can read about all the changes made for the 2007-2008 Season

On this page:
They arrived
They stay
They left
Draft picks
Complete Roster

They arrived:

Derek FisherDerek Fisher
The guard, a member of three championship teams with L.A., agreed to a three-year, $14-million contract. He knows the triangle offense, is very close to Kobe and will be a excellent addition because of his in and out-court attitude. Fisher will fill the experienced starting point guard spot the team was needing. After leading a young Utah Jazz team to the Western Conference Finals, he asked out of his contract - 3 years and almost $21 million - to move to a city with more appropriate medical care for his 1-year-old daughter, who has a rare form of eye cancer.

Pau GasolPau Gasol
Surprising everybody the Lakers made a trade with the Grizzlies that send erratic Kwame Brown, rookie Javaris Crittenton, the rights to Marc Gasol, Aaron Mckie's contract and two first-round picks and brought the All-star caliber forward/center from Spain Pau Gasol and a second round pick. This 7-0, 27-year-old big men may be the answer to Kobe's prays, bringing the team a solid post presence that can score and sometimes rebound, makes his free throws, knows all the fundaments and despite his youth has a lot of international experience. Shadowed by the performance of an awful Memphis team since 2001-02, Gasol was Rookie of the Year in 2002, an All-Star in 2006 and had the Golden Medal and MVP in the 2006 Basketball World Championship. Gasol averaged 18.9 points and 8.8 rebounds in 39 games for Memphis this season and he could share the center spot or even the frontcourt with Bynum. Because of the contract he brings, he is due $49.4 million through 2011 after this season, amount that will make the team pay a lot of luxury tax, but that will be the price to keep Kobe here.

Coby Karl
The 24-year-old 6-foot-4 guard is the son of Nuggets' coach George Karl. He averaged 14.8 points, 4.1 rebounds and 4.0 assists as a senior at Boise State in 2006-07, was a Western Athletic Conference 1st-team selection and despite not being selected in the 2007 NBA draft he played for the Lakers summer-league team and averaged 12.2 points in five games.

Trevor Ariza
Nine games into the season the Lakers traded Brian Cook and Maurice Evans to Orlando in exchange for Ariza, a 22-year-old, 6 feet 8, 210 pounds small forward who was averaging 3.3 points and 2.2 rebounds in 10.5 minutes this year. He has a contract of $3.1 million this season and a player option for $3.1 million next year.
The move make the Lakers younger, leaves the roster with 14 players, one below the NBA maximum, and saves the franchise about $6 million over the next 3 seasons. He was brought mainly because of his defense, athleticism and big potential, but initially will need time to learn the basics of the triangle offense.

Ariza returns home, he grew up in Los Angeles where he helped take Westchester to two state titles before averaging 11.6 points and 6.5 rebounds in one season at UCLA. Then he was taken 44th overall by New York in the 2004 draft and was traded to Orlando during the 2005-06 season. He averaged 8.9 points and 4.4 rebounds in 22.4 minutes per game last season with the Magic but his role was reduced this year.

Others:

DJ Mbenga Free agent from the Warriors, the 27 year-old center from Congo was signed to a 10-day contract after the injuries of Bynum and Ariza. He filled the final spot on the roster putting an end to Chris Webber's chances of joining the team. Update Feb/10: with Mihm needing surgery again, Mbenga was signed for the rest of the season.
Ira Newble A free agent and 8-year veteran, Newble arrived to provide some defense at small forward and to cover the hole made by Ariza's injury, who could be a problem in the Playoffs. At 6 feet 7 and 220 pounds, he averaged 4.3 points in 33 games this season with the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Rumors...
After Garnett landed in Boston all the rumors talked about where could Kobe be traded if he still wanted out and the list included Mavericks, Knicks, Bulls and some others but with Bynum playing better every day (which means the Lakers were right in not trading Odom and Bynum for Jermaine O'Neal or Jason Kidd) and the arrival of Pau Gasol the rumors have died and everything indicates Kobe will remain a Laker until the end of his contract... The Gasol trade also ended with the rumors about the arrival of Chris Webber or Jason Kidd... Rumors archive.

They stay:

Luke Walton
Fan favorite and a key player for Phil Jackson's triangle offense, Walton was an unrestricted free-agent. He said that he was going to test free agent market but reports say that Mitch Kupchak called Walton's agent a minute after the free agent period started and they agreed to a 6-year, $30-million contract to stay with the Lakers.

Walton is 27 years old and averaged 11.4 points, 5 rebounds and 4.3 assists -- all career highs -- last season.

Chris Mihm
Mihm, 28, became a free-agent but signed a two-year, $5-million contract to stay with the Lakers. The first year of his contract is guaranteed and the second year is a player option.

He was the starting center and was averaging career-bests of 10.2 points and 1.4 blocks and taking 6.3 rebounds a game when he hurt his right ankle toward the end of the 2005-06 season. He was paid 4.2 million in 2006-07 but did not play at all after undergoing reconstructive surgery before the start of the season.

They left:

Smush Parker
Phil Jackson wasn't very happy with him, but Parker's comments about the coach's decisions were the drop that fulfilled the glass and sentenced his future. He became a free agent and nobody asked him to stay. He signed with the Miami Heat.

Brian Cook
Included in the Trevor Ariza trade, he was the Lakers' first-round pick in 2003 and his best season was in 2005-06, when he averaged 7.9 points, 3.4 rebounds and 19 minutes, all career highs. Cook was was averaging 2.3 points in 12 minutes this season, the first of a three-year, $10.5-million contract.

Maurice Evans
Also part of the Ariza trade, he was acquired from Detroit in a draft day trade in 2006 and averaged a career-high 8.4 points in 76 games last season, his first with the Lakers. He averaged 4.4 points in seven games for L.A. this year, the final of his contract, that pays him $1.7 million.

Kwame Brown
His expiring 9 million contract was the centerpiece of the Pau Gasol trade. This way Mitch Kupchak corrects his biggest mistake, that was bringing Brown from the Wizards in exchange for now All-Star Caron Butler, a bet that despite Phil Jackson's continuous defense of Brown proved to be wrong and gave him the sad honor of being booed by the local fans at the Staples Center who got tired of his inability to control the ball in his hands.

Others:

Aaron Mckie Unrestricted free-agent, played only 24 games in 2 seasons with the team. He joined the 76ers as an assistant coach but without contract so the Lakers did a sign-and-trade to include him in the Gasol trade.
Shammond Williams Free agent, signed by Pamesa Valencia of Spain

Lakers Draft Picks:

Javaris CrittentonFirst round 19th pick:Javaris Crittenton
The Lakers used their first round pick to take a 6-foot-3 ball-handling guard from Georgia Tech who has size (194 pounds) and a decent three-point shot and in many mock draft was expected to be selected in the early teens. This way the team added another young point guard. Update: he was included in the Pau Gasol trade.

2nd round 40th pick: Sun Yue (from Philadelphia)
He's a 6-9, 205 pounds small forward and has a pass-first mentality that has won him the nickname of the "Chinese Magic Johnson". A member of the China National Team, he averaged 10.5 assists for a Chinese professional team (Beijing Aoshen) that relocated in midseason to Los Angeles to play in the American Basketball Association.

2nd round 48th pick:Marc Gasol (from Dallas)
He's 7-1 and 265 pounds and is the young brother of Pau Gasol. Though he's young (22 years old) he has experience, including playing the role of backup center of his brother in the 2006 World Championship where Spain won the Gold Medal. Gasol will spend another season with the Spanish club Akasvayu Girona. Update: his draft rights were included in the trade that brought Pau from Memphis.

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This is the 2007-2008 Los Angeles Lakers roster

Guards:
No. Player Position Ht Wt Yrs DOB more
18 Sasha Vujacic Point Guard 6-7 205 3 3/8/1984 profile buy jersey
2 Derek Fisher Point Guard 6-1 210 11 8/9/1974 profile buy jersey
5 Jordan Farmar Point Guard 6-2 180 1 11/30/1986 profile buy jersey
11 Coby Karl Shooting Guard 6-5 215 R 3/6/1983 profile buy jersey
24 Kobe Bryant Shooting Guard 6-6 205 11 8/23/1978 profile buy jersey
Forwads:
No. Player Position Ht Wt Yrs DOB   more
4 Luke Walton Small Forward 6-8 235 4 3/28/1980 profile buy jersey
10 Vladimir Radmanovic Small Forward 6-10 235 6 11/19/1980 profile buy jersey
3 Trevor Ariza Small Forward 6-8 210 3 6/30/1985 profile buy jersey
14 Ira Newble Small Forward 6-7 220 7 1/20/1975 profile buy jersey
7 Lamar Odom Small and Power Forward 6-10 230 8 11/6/1979 profile buy jersey
21 Ronny Turiaf Power Forward 6-10 250 2 1/12/1983 profile buy jersey
Centers:
No. Player Position Ht Wt Yrs DOB   more
16 Pau Gasol Power Forward / Center 7-0 250 6 7/6/1980 profile buy jersey
31 Chris Mihm Center 7-0 265 6 7/16/1979 profile buy jersey
17 Andrew Bynum Center 7-0 285 2 10/27/1987 profile buy jersey
28 Didier Ilunga-Mbenga Center 7-0 255 3 12/30/1980 profile buy jersey
Played but were traded:
No. Player Position Ht Wt Yrs DOB   traded to
1 Javaris Crittenton Point Guard 6-5 200 R 12/31/1987 profile Grizzlies
6 Maurice Evans Guard 6-5 220 4 11/8/1978 profile Magic
43 Brian Cook Power Forward 6-9 234 4 12/4/1980 profile Magic
54 Kwame Brown Center 6-11 270 6 3/10/1982 profile Grizzlies

Head Coach: Phil Jackson
Assistant Coaches:
(they are allowed to be on the bench)
 
Frank Hamblen
Kurt Rambis
Brian Shaw
Jim Cleamons
Special Assistant Coaches:
 
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
Craig Hodges
Consultant: Tex Winter
Athletic Trainer: Gary Vitti

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