Now the Lakers must again draw a top-three pick or convey it to the 76ers (who acquired it from Phoenix) to complete the Nash trade.Worse, losing this year’s pick as opposed to next year’s unprotected one, would also cost the Lakers their No. 1 in 2019 to complete the Howard deal.If the Lakers keep this season’s pick. Orlando has to take two second-round picks.With NBA rules barring trading successive years’ No. 1 picks, the Magic agreed to take two No. 2s if the Lakers didn’t give up their pick for Nash until 2018.I know, it’s complicated. Just think of it this way:Lakers keep this year’s pick: Very good.Lakers lose this year’s pick: Awful.The difference between finishing No. 28 and No. 29 is worth almost 10 percentage points. The No. 29 team has a 55.8 percent chance of drawing a top-three pick compared to the No. 28 team’s 46.9 percent.That’s a noticeable difference to the Suns but a critical one to the Lakers.The Lakers are 10-35 since their 10-10 start but have already surpassed last season’s 17 wins, assured of beating the previous season’s 21 … so that’s enough changing of the culture for the moment.This isn’t the low point of Lakers history. That was the two seasons before this one with the team now stocked with ever-improving prospects, led by D’Angelo Russell, averaging 21.9 points and shooting 47 percent in his post-All-Star Game breakout.The Lakers, of course, are still the Lakers as far as soap opera goes, although the Fabulous Buss Boys and Girls’ Saga seems to be winding down.Happily for Jeanie, her brothers botched their attempt to unseat her or maneuver her into buying them out at their price, as they’ve fumbled everything else in their privileged lives. Their lawyer denied they wanted to oust Jeanie just because they proposed a board of directors with Jim on it instead of her, noting the boys “hoped that any issues would be handled within the family.”In other words … oops!Among the six siblings, it’s Jimmy and Johnny vs. everyone else with Janie and younger brothers Joey and Jesse backing Jeanie.“I’m really, really proud of my sister for putting her business hat on,” Janie told ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne. “I know how hard it was. My dad’s dying wish was to leave the Lakers to all of us, and that we would all get along. He would be sickened if he saw what was going on with my older brothers.”The boys’ attempt to stack the Lakers board was laughable. Nomie Chaudhari, a business partner of Jim’s who was one of the nominees to replace Jeanie, said he hadn’t even given permission to involve him, with his lawyer announcing, “Mr. Chaudhari made it very clear that he is not, nor has he ever been, interested in participating in a family dispute.”Everyone in town, including the press, is happily beating up on Jimmy and Johnny, the royal klutzes, in the sure knowledge they won’t be involved with the Lakers much longer.For all the deserved veneration for their father as Lakers owner, it would have helped if he had guided his sons to work for a living rather than bankrolling them in playboy lifestyles like his. Jerry had been brilliant enough to make a fortune. All his sons did was inherit one.Unlike Jimmy and Johnny, Joey, who runs the D-Fenders, and Jesse, a Lakers scout, come to the office and approach their positions as jobs … however inexperienced that might leave them.Joey was thrust into the role of spokesman after the Lakers won their 2010 title in Orlando with neither Jerry nor Jim even on the trip in another zany Buss chapter.Joey announced that with 15 titles, the Lakers had just “two to go” to catch the Celtics, recalling the boast of newly-arrived Boston owner Wyc Grousbeck that “We’re 8-2” against the Lakers before the teams met in the 2008 Finals, as if he had anything to do with it.Actually, the Lakers had 16 titles (counting the five in Minneapolis) and one to go. Six years later, most of it grisly, they still have one to go.At least Lakers fans have something to root for although at the moment winning, like Jimmy and Johnny, has nothing to do with it. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error For Lakers fans worried about tanking, your young team refuses to pack it in, as it showed in winning last week’s Pingpong Ball Special in Phoenix, a matchup of the NBA’s Nos. 28 and 29 teams.Actually, Lakers fans aren’t worried their team will tank. They’re worried it won’t.At No. 29, with a two-game lead over No. 28 Phoenix and a chance to make it a hard-to-surmount three games, the Lakers put it all together … for the first time in four weeks … ending their 10-game losing streak with a 122-110 romp over the Suns.What heart. What promise. What a bad time for it. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREUCLA alum Kenny Clark signs four-year contract extension with Packers“If you’re the Lakers fan base,” said TNT’s Reggie Miller, grasping the obvious that eluded the team and the coaching staff, “you want to see these young players play hard, give a great effort but ultimately lose this season so you can retain that pick.”Oh right, that pick … the Lakers’ first-rounder that they don’t get to keep unless it’s in the top three.For other teams, a low finish decides how high they pick in in the lottery. For the Lakers, it will decide if they keep the pick and are in the lottery.If it now comes up every season, the Lakers have been looking down the barrel of a cannon with the picks they owe for the 2011 trades for Dwight Howard and Steve Nash came due.A year ago the Lakers got to keep their No. 1 if it was in the top three. They finished second-worst, drew No. 2 and selected Brandon Ingram, now considered their top prospect, frail as he looks.
One of the world’s fastest growing budget airlines, AirAsia X, has secured new services between Kuala Lumpur and Christchurch. Air New Zealand Deputy Chief Executive Officer Norm Thompson congratulated Christchurch Mayor Bob Parker and Christchurch International Airport Ltd for securing the new carrier. “This is a really positive development for not only Christchurch but for the wider New Zealand economy” he said. According to Mr. Thompson, the new service is “a great example of the creation of a new complementary market to those already served by Air New Zealand and other existing carriers.” The introduction of this new service will increase market competition and “almost certainly stimulate a new wave of budget conscious travellers from Asia to New Zealand as well as from the other international ports AirAsia’s X services connect with in Kuala Lumpur” said Mr. Thompson. Mr. Thompson believes the development will benefit the already established South East Asian market and has the potential to create new tourism opportunities for New Zealand. Source = e-Travel Blackboard: P.T