Los Angeles Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak ‘Disappointed’ By the Team

by January 07, 2013

In a meeting with season ticket holders, Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak was candid when addressing the struggling team’s many, many issues. Kupchak didn’t mince words when it came to the failures of the Lakers so far, while leaving room for a glimmer of hope going into the second half of the season. Per the LA Times: “Lakers General Manager Mitch Kupchak told a group of about 1,000 season-ticket holders at Staples Center that he was ‘disappointed’ with the team’s performance this season. ‘If you have a bunch of cylinders, we’re not running on all cylinders right now,’ he said during a Q&A session Sunday morning, before the Lakers fell to 15-18 with a 112-105 loss to the Denver Nuggets on Sunday night. The major question for the organization seems to be the integration of Pau Gasol with Dwight Howard, under the guidance of Coach Mike D’Antoni. ‘I think Pau continues to struggle to figure out how he’s going to play with his group,’ Kupchak said. ‘Our coaches are struggling as well. We’re not going to succeed as a team until we figure that out.’ Kupchak also noted the Lakers’ need to improve defensively. ‘The players that we have on this team are certainly capable of playing lock-down defense,’ he said. ‘Everybody has to look at the defense … just like the offensive side of the ball. Most guys really, really want to score. In order to be a good defensive team, everybody has to really, really want to play defense and defend.’ Kupchak said a Lakers roster with an average age of 28.5 was not too old. ‘I don’t think age is a factor, no. That’s an excuse,’ he said. ‘I don’t think that’s a factor at all when you look at our team. Young teams don’t win championships. You have to have a good mix of experience and some legs in this business … I don’t think for a second this team is too old to win a championship.’ Kupchak also said Kobe Bryant, who is averaging an NBA-leading 30.5 points and whose 48.3% shooting from the field would be a career best over a full season, has improved with age.”