“Most of the league doesn’t like how the Lakers do business.” This was one of the most used phrases in the NBA this year, especially after the Anthony Davis trade.
We never really got a specific explanation, but we can assume it goes to tampering and using the Laker and Los Angeles allure to get players to ask for trades and have deals in place before the CBA allows it.
Part of it is jealousy. There is a prevailing feeling the Lakers can be mismanaged, underfunded, poorly coached and still, they will somehow get players to join. A lot of teams are a better place to play basketball in, but if you walk outside and you are in Utah…that’s not something players want.
So the unearned advantages are balanced when it’s time to do business. In a limited market, you are forced to do business with the 29 other teams – of which most seem to resent you, to say the least. It takes a lot of skill to work around it, and it seems Magic and Pelinka failed at making improvements in that regard.
As a GM your no.1 job is to manage your owner. Manage expectations and get them to trust your vision and the fact that you (at least in a perfect world) know more about basketball than them. An extension of that reality is earning the respect of your peers.
If other GM’s can trust you and respect you, it increases to perform in areas we think of first when it comes to front office duties – assembling a roster. If the Lakers want to shake things up, it is time for everyone to look a long look in the mirror, before they fire the guy who is the last one to be blamed for this season.
Sorry, Luke, nobody said it was fair.