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Watch Jeremy Lin meet Jeremy Lin at Madame Tussauds

Last week, Jeremy Lin was immortalized in wax at Madame Tussauds on San Francisco's Fisherman's Wharf.

Joined by friends and family, Lin helped unveil his wax figure, which features the 26-year-old point guard in a Lakers uniform.

"You guys changed up the jersey and the shoes very quickly," said Lin after the unveiling.

Lin was traded to the Lakers in July from the Houston Rockets. He originally sat with Madame Tussauds to help model the wax figure while still with the Rockets.

"We just had a room over there for maybe two hours," said Lin. "I had to do my best to stay in this pose as long as possible.  It was a cool experience."

"It's a little too real," said Lin, of his likeness.

Madame Tussauds is famous for lifelike wax images of celebrities, athletes and politicians. The San Francisco branch also features local icons such as Lin, who is the first American of Chinese or Taiwanese descent to play in the NBA.

Lin averaged 12.5 points a game for the Rockets last season, shooting career...

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D-Fenders hire Phil Hubbard to coach Lakers' D-League affiliate

The D-Fenders have hired Phil Hubbard as the head coach of the Lakers' NBA Development League affiliate.

"We are excited to announce Phil Hubbard as the head coach of the D-Fenders," said club President and Chief Executive Joey Buss in a statement. "Phil is an NBA veteran, consummate professional and has decades of coaching experience. His passion for basketball will inspire our players to develop both on and off the court while competing for a championship."

Hubbard was previously an assistant with the D-Fenders (2011-13), before leaving to assist with the Santa Cruz Warriors last season.

The 57-year-old veteran coach has also worked as an assistant for a number of NBA teams including the Atlanta Hawks, Golden State Warriors and Washington Wizards.

"During his previous tenure with the team, and throughout his career, Phil has proven to be exceptional at relating to players while preparing them for the next level,” said D-Fenders General Manager Nick Mazzella.  "Our team will benefit...

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Lakers work out Michael Beasley again, audition other free agents

Free-agent forward Michael Beasley worked out this week for the Lakers for the second time.

As confirmed by his agent, Jared Karnes, Beasley has met twice with the Lakers this off-season but has yet to reach any agreement with the team on a contract.

Beasley, the second overall pick in the 2008 NBA draft, spent last season with the Miami Heat, averaging 7.9 points a game while shooting 49.9% from the field and 38.9% from three-point range.

Prior to trading Derek Fisher for Jordan Hill in 2012, the Lakers were close to acquiring Beasley from the Minnesota Timberwolves. Though Beasley is a gifted scorer, he has yet to find a long-term home in the league.

The Lakers have volume at the power positions with Carlos Boozer, rookie Julius Randle, Jordan Hill, Ed Davis, Robert Sacre and Ryan Kelly, though the team is a bit undersized at center.

Beasley can play at either forward spot. The Lakers have Wesley Johnson, Nick Young, Xavier Henry and potentially Kobe Bryant at small forward....

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Jordan Clarkson's rookie Lakers contract guaranteed

The Lakers have signed Missouri guard Jordan Clarkson, after acquiring the 6-foot-5 combination guard on draft night from the Washington Wizards (46th overall pick) for $1.8 million in cash.

Clarkson will receive a fully guaranteed minimum salary for the 2014-15 season at $507,336 and a non-guaranteed $845,059 for 2015-16, totaling $1.35 million.

If Clarkson sticks with the team to opening night in 2015, his salary locks in for the entire year.

The Lakers will be able to make Clarkson a restricted free agent before the 2016-17 season, with a qualifying offer of $1.18 million.

Now with 13 players under contract this season, the Lakers are committed to $67.87 million in salary.

The team can bring as many as 20 players to training camp but no more than 15 to the start of the regular season.

Email Eric Pincus at eric.pincus@gmail.com and follow him on Twitter @EricPincus.

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Former Laker Darius Morris: Kobe Bryant 'one of the best' teammates

Former Lakers point guard Darius Morris recently signed a contract with the Portland Trail Blazers.

Morris spent two years with the Lakers after they drafted him in 2011 with the 41st overall pick. He has since spent time with the Philadelphia 76ers, Memphis Grizzlies and the Clippers.

On Sunday, Morris gave his thoughts on Lakers all-star Kobe Bryant via Instagram.

"Honestly I can say he was one of the best [teammates] I had on and off the court," Morris wrote. "He schooled me in the business and lifestyle of the NBA."

"He was never negative or talked down to anybody and I was there where when [he went through] some tough times, but he went out of his way to be helpful towards me, push me and to think big picture in life and to have the mental toughness to remain [focused] and never be satisfied."

Morris was with the Lakers when Bryant tore his Achilles tendon.  The young guard averaged 10.5 points through four playoff games in 2013, as the Lakers were swept by the San Antonio Spurs...

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Lakers sign 46th overall pick, rookie guard Jordan Clarkson

 

On Monday, the Lakers signed Jordan Clarkson, increasing the team's 2014-15 roster to 13 players.

Clarkson was acquired by the Lakers for $1.8 million cash in a draft-day trade with the Washington Wizards in June. The University of Missouri combination guard was selected with the 46th overall pick.

In July, Clarkson led the Lakers' summer league squad in scoring at 15.8 points a game. The 6-foot-5, 22-year-old shot 42.4% from the field, 42.1% from three-point range and 88.2% from the line through five appearances.

While the Lakers did not release Clarkson's contract terms, he'll earn the rookie minimum of $507,336 for the coming season.

Clarkson joins a Lakers' backcourt of Jeremy Lin, Steve Nash, Kobe Bryant, Nick Young and Xavier Henry -- although the latter three could all play minutes at small forward this season.

The Lakers can bring up to 20 players to training camp next month but no more than 15 to opening night on Oct. 28 when the team hosts the Houston Rockets.

Email Eric...

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Gambling website gives Lakers 66-1 odds for 2014-15 NBA title

After a 27-win season, the Lakers are not a favorite to win the NBA title this coming year.

According to gambling website Bovada, the Lakers have just 66-1 odds of winning the championship in 2015.

While the Lakers should certainly be better than they were a year ago with the return of Kobe Bryant, who played in just six games with knee and Achilles injuries, Bovada lists 15 teams with greater odds to win it all.

The Cleveland Cavaliers are tops with 5-2 odds, followed by the reigning champion San Antonio Spurs at 4-1.

With a healthy Derrick Rose, and former Lakers center/forward Pau Gasol, the Chicago Bulls are third with 11-2 odds. The Oklahoma City Thunder (6-1) are favored over the Clippers (12-1).

Also ahead of the Lakers are the Houston Rockets (16-1), Dallas Mavericks (18-1), Golden State Warriors (22-1), Washington Wizards (33-1), Indiana Pacers (40-1), Miami Heat (40-1), Portland Trail Blazers (40-1), Memphis Grizzlies (50-1), New York Knicks (50-1) and Toronto Raptors (50-1)....

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Lakers' week in review

August is a common vacation month in the NBA, but that didn't stop Lakers executives Mitch Kupchak and John Black from participating in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. Kupchak was nominated by Dodgers executive Stan Kasten.

Byron Scott began a mentorship at Centennial High School in Compton; Jeremy Lin helped unveil his likeness at San Francisco's Madame Tussauds.

The Lakers have a relatively friendly 82-game schedule through the 2014-15 season, with few games on consecutive nights and short road trips.

The team opens the season at Staples Center against the Houston Rockets, playing 10 of their first 17 games at home through a busy November schedule.

Two-thirds of December is on the road, but the competition level may be light. January could be a critical and difficult month for the Lakers.

February is the team's lightest month, giving the Lakers a chance to climb in standings, setting up March to be the make-or-break stretch on the schedule.

If the franchise is close enough to make a...

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Shaquille O'Neal compares Kobe and LeBron but calls Dr. J 'greatest'

Through his 19-year career, Shaquille O'Neal played with both Kobe Bryant and LeBron James.

"They're different," said O'Neal to AttennaMag.com. "LeBron is more of an all-around player -- 'Hey this guy's open, let me kick it to him.'"

O'Neal played 53 games through the 2009-10 season with James in Cleveland with the Cavaliers.

"Kobe is more of, 'Oh, we're down six?  I'm going to shoot it three times and get us six points,'" said O'Neal.

Bryant and O'Neal won three titles in eight years together with the Lakers, before O'Neal was traded to the Miami Heat.

O'Neal finished his career with four championships, winning with the Heat in 2006. Bryant has five total, two since the departure of the All-Star center.

"They're both great players," said O'Neal of James and Bryant. "To me. Dr. J [Julius Erving] was the greatest player ever. But I ask other people, they say [Michael] Jordan, some say Kobe, some people say LeBron. It's always going to be a matter of opinion."

Erving was a star and 1983...

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Can Lakers stay close enough to make playoff push in April?

If the Lakers can stay healthy this season, after an injury-plagued, 27-win 2013-14, the team may be able to rebound through March with a winning record.

Losing center/forward Pau Gasol to the Chicago Bulls in free agency won't help, but the return of Kobe Bryant after knee and Achilles injuries should lead to a more successful 2014-15 season.

Every team plays an 82-game schedule, but the Lakers have a relatively light path with only 16 games on consecutive nights, and no road trip longer than a five-game stint in March.

Starting April with a 38-35 or even 39-34 record may not be out of reach.

The final month features seven games at Staples Center (including one "away" game against the Clippers) and just two on the road outside of Los Angeles. Five of the nine games will be played against teams that weren't able to make the playoffs in 2014.

April opens with a three-game homestand, starting with the New Orleans Pelicans on the first of the month. After hosting the Portland Trail...

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Mitch Kupchak, John Black of Lakers take the ALS ice bucket challenge

On Thursday, two Lakers executives took part in the ALS ice bucket challenge.

General Manager Mitch Kupchak, nominated by Dodgers chief executive Stan Kasten, got doused with a bucket of ice water to help raise awareness and donations to help fight amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or Lou Gehrig's disease.

Kupchak in turn nominated Lakers owner Jim Buss, actor Jack Nicholson and former Lakers general manager Jerry West.

West, an owner/executive with the Golden State Warriors, quickly answered Kupchak’s challenge – declaring, “I quit,” after getting drenched with ice water.

John Black, the Lakers vice president of public relations, also accepted the challenge, passing the torch on to tennis player Pete Sampras, sportscaster Jim Gray and Alison Bogli (Lakers senior manager of public relations).

According to the ALS Assn., the ice bucket challenge helped raise $41.8 million in donations since July 29, a dramatic rise from the same time period a year ago ($2.1 million).

The Internet sensation...

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San Francisco's Madame Tussauds to unveil Jeremy Lin figure

Lakers point guard Jeremy Lin on Thursday is set to help unveil a wax figure of himself at Madame Tussauds on San Francisco's Fisherman's Wharf.

Madame Tussauds is famous for lifelike wax images of celebrities, athletes and politicians. The San Francisco branch also features local icons such as Lin, who is the first American of Chinese or Taiwanese descent to play in the NBA.

Born in Torrance, Lin grew up in Palo Alto. He began his NBA career with the Golden State Warriors in 2010, before becoming a star with the New York Knicks in 2012.

In July, the Lakers acquired Lin from the Houston Rockets in a trade.

For his wax figure, Lin met with Madame Tussauds' artists for detailed measurements to ensure that the final product would be a realistic likeness of the 25-year-old point guard. He will turn 26 on Saturday.

Last season with the Rockets, Lin averaged 12.5 points and 4.1 assists a game while shooting career highs from the field (44.6%), the three-point line (35.8%) and the free-throw...

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