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On the NBA Beat Ep. 9a: Rey Moralde: Kobe Will “Retire Firing” in a “Chuckers’ Heaven”

This season’s Los Angeles Lakers are being talked about for mostly unfortunate reasons. One of the best players of all time, Kobe Bean Bryant, will retire upon season’s end and is undoubtedly playing the worst individual basketball of his career. The team is just as bad, beginning with a 3-18 record that includes a loss to the now 1-21 76ers in Bryant’s underwhelming homecoming. But while there’s certainly ample room for doom and gloom on the episode, Rey-Rey is Fundamental’s Rey Moralde talks about some of the more positive aspects of the current Lakers, such as their exciting young core, led by Jordan Clarkson, Julius Randle and potentially D’Angelo Russell. Rey speaks glowingly about those guys, as well as less glowingly on the disappointing close to Bryant’s career and how poor of a job he believes Byron Scott is doing with this unit. Here are some highlights:   

5:20-5:30: “It’s hard to watch, but for Kobe, he’ll just retire firing basically, like he’s just done his entire career.”   

13:50-14:20: On the framework already in place and projecting the franchise’s future: “As much as there’s doom and gloom with the Lakers, they do have a few players that have potential in Russell, Randle and possibly Clarkson, if he stays, because I don’t know if someone else will scoop him up. But if they have those three, they add another one from the draft and they can Byron…if they get a young coach…and have him grow along with those four potential players, I think they could have something there.”   

15:05-15:45: How Jordan Clarkson is one of the few bright spots for the Lakers this season: “Clarkson is fearless, and he’s shown that from Day 1 since Summer League, since his rookie year, he’s not afraid to go in there and mix it up with everybody basically. I know he’s supposed to be a point guard, but he’s really playing more of an attacking two. As a scoring two, he’s pretty good for his second year. And you could probably say that he’s the greatest Filipino basketball player of all time.”   

20:05-20:25: On Lou Williams’ struggles: “Part of me was laughing, because they already have a player like that in Nick Young. They have Kobe. It’s like a chuckers’ heaven basically. I thought it was hilarious when they signed Lou Williams. But with that said, yeah, he’s one of those guys that has to shoot his way out of it.”   

26:20-27:20: Regarding the prospect of rebuilding through the draft: “People are saying, ‘Oh, wait till they get Ben Simmons!’ There’s just no guarantee. And even then, how do you know if he’s gonna be really great? I remember two summers ago, Andrew Wiggins and Jabari Parker were supposed to be transcendent players…I just don’t want to hear all about the hype right now, to just to see where it goes…it represents hope and I get that, but we should also set fair expectations too.”

Music: “Who Likes to Party” by Kevin MacLeod