Archive for the 'Shannon Brown' Category

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Backup Guards Chip In As L.A. Beats Philly

blog_100226brownfarmarWednesday in Dallas was not a good night for Jordan Farmar and Shannon Brown.

Playing 28 total minutes off the bench between them in L.A.’s 101-96 loss to the Mavericks, the two guards combined for just nine points, two assists and two rebounds. Defensively, Brown had two steals and Farmar one, but they together drew the ire of Phil Jackson after ceding a buzzer-beating three-pointer to Jason Kidd at the close of the third quarter, giving Dallas a lead it would not give up.

That’s not ideal, to say the least, for two ultra-competitive guards that have collectively spent a large chunk of individual time honing their games not just in the offseason, but as the season’s gone on. Of course, winning remains the bottom line for both, and an unproductive game is easily shaken off when there’s a “W” after it.

Fortunately, the NBA season offers a new opportunity every a day or two, and the first chance to get Wednesday’s sour milk out of Brown and Farmar’s respective mouths came on Friday night at STAPLES Center against Philadelphia.

Take a look at the postgame box score from L.A.’s 99-90 victory, but don’t expect Farmar’s and Brown’s contributions to pop off the page.

Farmar: 19 minutes, 10 points on 3-of-7 shooting including 2-of-4 from three and 2-of-2 free throws, 1 block, 0 rebounds, 0 assists
Brown: 17 minutes, 5 points on 2-of-7 shooting including 1-of-3 from three, 1 assist, 1 rebound

But look a little closer: 10 points off the bench from Farmar and a defensive spark from Brown that woke up a somewhat dreary Lakers team were more than enough to help the Lakers win a game.

59491043Among Farmar’s points was a third-quarter-ending 3-pointer that put L.A. up five instead of two heading into the fourth, and his 17-foot jumper with 6:52 to play in the game gave the Lakers their biggest lead to that point (85-78). Brown’s defensive focus helped slow Philly point guards Louis Williams (nine points after the first quarter) and Jrue Holiday (eight total points), which is generally what L.A.’s coaching staff is looking for from both Lakers’ backups.

“We want them to bring some energy, especially on the defensive end,” said assistant coach Brian Shaw. “When they come in the game, maybe get a couple of steals, get out in the break, do something exciting and get everybody going.”

That’s good with Brown.

“Defense is always my main focus,” he said. “That doesn’t change from game to game. When I come in the game, it’s defense.”

Because Farmar and Brown play for the league’s most talented team – where Lamar Odom comes off the bench, Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol are capable of nightly double-doubles and Kobe Bryant is Kobe Bryant – they often don’t need to do much more.

“We really just try to play with a lot of energy,” said Farmar of what was left. “Stay aggressive but at the same time, don’t go out there and do too much.”

Not that they don’t want to do more, or that they can’t.

Farmar’s single game highs this season (24 points, eight assists, five rebounds, three steals and 27 minutes) and Brown’s (27 points, 10 rebounds, six assists, three steals and 39 minutes) show as much. So did key playoff contributions last season, such as Farmar’s big Game 3 in Houston or Brown’s key third quarter stretch in Game 5 against Denver.

59745757It’s just that on some nights, there might not be as much of an opportunity. For example, Farmar has played more than 25 minutes just once. And on a night such as Friday, there was this: Bynum put up 20 points and 13 rebounds, Gasol 23 points and 11 rebounds double-doubles, Bryant finished with a team-high eight assists in addition to his 19 points and two steals and Odom added 11 points, nine boards and three blocks.

There goes the steak, the potatoes, the broccoli and the rolls off the plate, leaving just the sauce and some butter.

“I think we did in the second half a little bit, got some stops, a shot clock violation, some three-pointers,” said Farmar. “We were able to establish the motivation in our favor.”

True enough. Then with 6:01 to play in the fourth, veterans Derek Fisher and Ron Artest returned to close out the game.

What Farmar and Brown were able to add to the effort against Philadelphia certainly surpassed what they put up against Dallas, but it wasn’t the increase in production – however insignificant in the box score it may have looked – so much as the result that mattered on Friday, and that always matters.

“It’s all about winning a championship,” said Brown. “That’s the big picture. We’re just trying to help the team win.”

That, they did.

POSTGAME NUMBERS
6 Big time celebs shown on the jumbotron late in the fourth quarter: Will Ferrell, Alyssa Milano, Ron Howard, Anthony Kiedis, John C. Reilly & Denzel Washington. Unfortunately, Jack Nicholson had already bounced from his usual seat.

8 Assists for Kobe Bryant, three below his season high, to lead the Lakers. Andre Iguodala had 10 for Philly.

32 Combined rebounds for Andrew Bynum (13), Pau Gasol (11) and Lamar Odom (9) to help L.A. edge Philly 47-43 on the backboards.

24 Points for Samuel Dalembert of the Sixers, his career high. More importantly, Dalembert was recognized on Friday morning by the NBA for his hugely important charitable efforts in his native Haiti, as he received the NBA Cares “Community Assist Award” for January.

64 Points in the paint for the Lakers, thanks primarily to the Gasol – Bynum duo that combined for 43 points.

Brown Misses Out On Slam Dunk Finals

Shannon Brown After months of build up keyed by the LetShannonDunk campaign, Shannon Brown’s entrance into the 2010 Slam Dunk Contest ended faster than most expected on All-Star Saturday night in Dallas.

He of the 44.5-inch vertical leap had put Lakers fans on their feet so often in his calendar-year stint with the team thanks to a bevy of crazy slams that anything but a victory seemed unlikely.

In fact, while 1986 Slam Dunk Champ and 2010 judge Spud Webb hadn’t seen much of Brown himself, he had certainly heard the word.

“Everybody I talk to says, ‘That’s my favorite, that’s my favorite, that’s my favorite,” Webb said.

59587568The event’s second dunker, Brown opened by running in from just beyond midcourt and taking off from in front of the left elbow for a huge 360, but surprised even himself by clanking the attempt off the rim. Participants have two full minutes to make a dunk, however, and Brown responded by rising high with the ball in his right hand before switching over at the last second to his left for the jam.

“After I missed the 360 I thought about doing it again, but I wanted to take off from a little bit further,” he said afterwards. “I decided to switch hands in the air. I looked at (the replay), it looked good still, but the judges gave me the score they gave me.”

That score was a 37, the lowest of the four participants that included eventual champion Nate Robinson (44), DeMar DeRozan (42) and Gerald Wallace (38).

For his second dunk, Brown called upon the assistance of former dunk champion Kobe Bryant, who tossed an alley-oop high into the air that Brown caught before hammering home a left-handed flush. Brown had hoped to cradle the ball downwards before bringing it back up, but it didn’t work out that way. He got a 41 for a total of 78, tying him with Wallace.

“(Kobe) was going to throw it up and I was supposed to catch it and bring it down, but when he threw it, I was so high that I just tried to lean in with it,” Brown explained.

It certainly wasn’t the result Brown had hoped for, but he quickly put things in perspective.

“There’s disappointment, but like I’ve been saying the whole time, I’m definitely blessed and honored to be able to participate,” he said. “Hopefully there will be a next time.”

Brown hinted that had he advanced to the final round – where Robinson beat out DeRozan for his third straight title – he had planned to use both Kobe and D.J. Mbenga, who was also in his Lakers warmups on the sideline: “I was just basically going to jump over them.”

Oh well.

The good news for Brown is that he gets to return to the league’s defending champion Lakers (41-13), who hold a 5.5 game lead over Denver in the Western Conference. He knows he can try to get some dunking revenge on the court, just not until he watches teammate Pau Gasol in Sunday’s All-Star game.

“I’m going to finish out this weekend, watch the game tomorrow and go dream about that, and just have a good time,” he concluded.

Top 10 Dunks: Shannon Brown

Our friends over at NBA.com posted the above highlight video of Shannon Brown’s Top 10 dunks, which doesn’t ever get boring to watch.

Furthermore, on Friday at the All-Star media availability session, we talked to Brown, Pau Gasol, Kobe Bryant and fellow Slam Dunk participants Nate Robinson and DeMar DeRozan for more on Brown’s freakish abilities.

To watch, CLICK HERE.

Coverage of All-Star Saturday night in Dallas, featuring Brown’s participation in the Slam Dunk Contest, begins at 5:30 PM on TNT.

Lakers Attend Rookie/Sophmore Game

blog_as10rookiegame_500While the Lakers didn’t have anyone participating in this year’s Rookie/Sophmore Challenge that didn’t stop three Lakers from attending for various reasons.

Guard Jordan Farmar, in town as the team’s players association representative, sat courtside next to the the Clippers’ Chris Kaman while watching fellow UCLA Bruins Kevin Love and Russell Westbrook.

At halftime the NBA held their first ever Dunk-In contest between DeMar DeRozan and Eric Gordon with the winner gaining entrance into Saturday night’s main event. Shannon Brown is quickly becoming the people’s favorite to take the Slam Dunk crown but that didn’t stop him from doing a little scouting Saturday.

For Pau Gasol it was a family affair as for the second year in a row his brother Marc was involved in the game.

Shannon Brown Selected to Participate in 2010 Slam Dunk Contest

Let Shannon Dunk

As any Lakers fan, or regular reader of this blog, knows, Shannon Brown can rise. The NBA has taken notice of his dunks this season, as well as the groundswell of support the fans have shown through LetShannonDunk.com, and put the Lakers guard into the 2010 Slam Dunk Contest along with Nate Robinson, Gerald Wallace and the winner of the new “dunk-in” comepetition between DeMar DeRozen and Eric Gordon.

Here’s the official release for the Lakers PR staff:

Los Angeles Lakers guard Shannon Brown was selected to compete in the Sprite Slam Dunk contest which will take place on NBA All-Star Saturday Night, Feb. 13, at American Airlines Center (8 p.m. ET on TNT) in Dallas, it was announced today.

Brown, who will be the first Lakers player to compete in the contest since teammate Kobe Bryant won the title as a rookie in 1997, will go against the 2009 Sprite Slam Dunk champion Nate Robinson of the New York Knicks as well as the Charlotte Bobcats’ Gerald Wallace. The final competitor in the contest will be decided at the NBA All-Star Slam Dunk-In, a single-round slam dunk competition that will feature Eric Gordon of the Los Angeles Clippers and DeMar DeRozan of the Toronto Raptors and will be held at halftime of the T-Mobile Rookie Challenge & Youth Jam on Friday, Feb. 12.

The website www.letshannondunk.com was created to help bring attention to Brown’s wide array of dunks so far this season, while also giving NBA fans across the world the opportunity to get to know the 6-4 guard from Michigan State.

Brown, who has played in all 40 games this season, is currently averaging 7.3 points and 1.1 assists in 18.4 minutes.

LetShannonDunk Q&A

blog_letshannondunk_200Watching Shannon Brown dunk is very, very fun (I think we can all agree on that).

Keeping that in mind, we sat down with Brown to talk about the first time he jammed, shattering backboards, a high school dunk contest with LeBron James, his favorite dunkers ever and more.

You can read the full interview over at LetShannonDunk.com, where you can also watch videos with Lakers players and broadcasters, more videos of some crazy dunks, view pictures and more.

Here’s a teaser:

MT: Tell us about the first time you ever dunked.
Brown: It was going into my freshman year at Tim Hardaway basketball camp. I actually got a steal, was on the break by myself and I went up and I dunked it. It wasn’t a clean flush, but it was good enough to where I knew I could do it. I’d been trying it in gym class my eighth grade year before that summer camp, and it wasn’t working for me. Then I finally got my chance.

MT: I had your dad Chris on a Lakers.com podcast last season, and he told me a story about your freshman year in high school when he got a call from Proviso East High School asking him to come down to the Maywood, Ill. location…
Brown: Oh yeah, I was in gym class and I was on a break all alone. I went up and dunked with two hands, and I shattered the backboard. At first, I was scared because I thought they were going to make me pay for it because I know they’re expensive. But once everything settled down, I kind of realized what I did … actually, everybody else helped me realize what I did, and it was special. The rim didn’t come off, but the whole backboard was shattered, all of it. It was done.

MT: It’s so difficult to think of just one favorite dunk ever. Can you do it?
Brown: I’m a big fan of Michael Jordan, Dominique Wilkins and Vince Carter. They all had amazing dunks that were unbelievable, a whole bunch of ‘em. I can’t even narrow it down because I have a whole bunch running through my head right now.

MT: One of my favorite in-game jams happened outside of the NBA, the infamous Vince Carter dunk that was literally over Frederic Wies of France.
Brown: Oh definitely. That was unreal. I was in high school when somebody sent me that on e-mail and I was just like, ‘Wow.’ Then there was one Jordan dunk where he rocked the cradle, then paused for a minute and reverse dunked it on the other side. He had to duck his head so he wouldn’t hit it on the rim. Crazy.

MT: We know that your hands are the opposite of small. When you played baseball, did you even bother using a glove?
Brown: (laughs) Yeah man, I’d just catch it in the hand, use the fingers and just throw it back. That’d throw people off a little bit.

To read the full interview head over to LetShannonDunk.com

Bryant, Brown Produce Highlight Reel

Kobe ReverseAnytime you want to check out the highlights from a Lakers game, you can click on our Gameday Page and watch from there.

The win against Oklahoma City featured so many fun moments – courtesy in large part of Kobe Bryant and Shannon Brown – that we wanted to make sure you didn’t miss it.

Take a peek if you didn’t catch Kobe’s behind-the-basket surprise, left-handed buzzer beater or Brown’s crazy alley-oop (and more) the first time, or if you just want to watch again.

Shannon Brown Breakaway vs. Clippers

It’s quickly becoming the running theme of the 2009 preseason, but here’s another big dunk by Shannon Brown, this time on the breakaway against the Clippers on Sunday night.

Shannon Brown’s Dunk

Shannon Brown Dunk(Photo by Noah Graham/NBAE/Getty Images)

Shannon Brown over Mikki Moore

Lakers Guard Shannon Brown elevates over the Warriors Mikki Moore at the 3:44 mark of the team’s first preseason game of the year.