Manage episode 295275403 series 1657213
"Tanking" has become a massive buzzword in NBA culture, and an approach to team-building that sparks everything from vitriol to accolades. Detractors say it's antithetical to winning, a reason ratings are down and an indictment of the analytically-driven geeks now running front offices. Defenders say it's the most effective way for franchises, particularly in small markets, to gather generational talent and turn fortunes. Bleacher Report's Jake Fischer has a terrific new book "Built to Lose: How the NBA's Tanking Era Changed the League Forever," which examines all sides of this polarizing topic, including where the Lakers' fallow period between Kobe Bryant's Achilles tear and the 2020 title fits into this story.
Hosts: Andy and Brian Kamenetzky
SEGMENT 1: How do you define tanking in the first place, why do people care if it happens and does it actually work? Fischer explains the culture of tanking.
SEGMENT 2: After explaining why a zero-sum view of winning leads to a misunderstanding of tanking, Fischer discusses the several years of losing seasons and lottery picks for the Lakers. Was that tanking or ineptitude? Also, what role did Kobe's controversial $48,500,000 extension play in this struggle?
SEGMENT 3: More talk about the ripple effect of Kobe's deal, plus the difficulties of combining the Mamba's twilight years, an old-school coach like Byron Scott and a group of lottery pick players. Plus, Andy runs his pet conspiracy theory about the Lakers and the NBA by Fischer.
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