After 43 games of the 2008-09 campaign, the Lakers have 35 wins. No matter how you think L.A. is playing, it’s certainly it’s hard to expect anything more from the win column. To reflect on the season’s first half, we welcomed Lakers General Manager Mitch Kupchak onto Lakers.com.
MT: After advancing to the NBA Finals last season without Andrew Bynum and Trevor Ariza, you knew you had a very good team. To what degree have the Lakers lived up to your expectations at the season’s midpoint?
Kupchak: The expectations were great, and I think there was a curiosity factor with a healthy Andrew Bynum. People didn’t know what to expect based on Trevor Ariza’s short window of opportunity with us last year; I’m not sure there was much expectation there. But certainly with Andrew coming back, people were very curious, and as I would expect myself they’d expect us to be a stronger team. We’ve had our share of small knickknack injuries and we haven’t really faced any extreme adversity so far. Jordan Farmar especially, Luke Walton, Lamar Odom, Sasha Vujacic all missed time and Kobe Bryant’s probably the most banged up of anybody but he continues to play. So where we are today, overall, we’re pleased. But we’ll be evaluated on how we conclude the season, not where we stand in January.
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