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The Los Angeles Lakers are a National Basketball Association team based in Los Angeles, California. They are notable for having (at the end of the 2004–05 season) the most wins (2,621), the highest winning percentage (61.9%), the most finals appearances (28), and the second most championships (14), behind the Boston Celtics who have 16. They also have the record for most consecutive wins in a season (33). Los Angeles Lakers Players
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Brian Cook



December 4, 1980 in Lincoln, Illinois
6ft - 9in

24th Overall, 2003 Los Angeles Lakers

Brian Joshua Cook (born December 4, 1980 in Lincoln, Illinois) is a power forward for the Los Angeles Lakers of the National Basketball Association. Cook was drafted out of the University of Illinois with the 24th pick of the first round of the 2003 NBA Draft. He led his high school team, the Lincoln Community High School Railsplitters, to the quarterfinals of the Illinois High School Association class AA state boys basketball tournament [1].

Cook played four seasons at the University of Illinois, beginning with the 1999-2000 season, and led the Fighting Illini in rebounding in each season. As a senior in the 2002-2003 season, Cook led the Fighting Illini in scoring with 20.0 points per game, and was received the Chicago Tribune Silver Basketball as the Most Valuable Player of the Big Ten Conference. That same season, Cook was named Second-Team All-American by The Sporting News, and Third-Team All-American by the Associated Press, the National Association of Basketball Coaches, and The Basketball Times, as well as Big Ten Player of the Year and First-Team All-Big Ten by both the coaches and the media. Cook left Illinois as the school's third all-time leading scorer with 1748 total points, at an average of 13.2 points per game.

In college, Cook was a scorer from both the inside and the outside, utilizing his height to score in the post and attempting three-point shots when left open. As a professional, Cook has become a player who predominantly shoot from the perimeter, away from the basket. In Cook's rookie season (2003-04), he had only five three-point attempts out of 141 total field goal attempts. As a second-year player (2004-05) under former Lakers head coach Rudy Tomjanovich he was mainly three-point specialist, in fact 199 of 422 (or 47.2%) of Cook's field goal attempts were from behind the three-point arc. However since Phil Jackson return to coaching the Lakers in 2005-06, Cook shoots from the perimeter less often and now looks for midrange opportunities. Only 59 of 442 (or 13.3%) of Cook's field goal attempts are three-point attempts. This has resulted in Cook improving his overall field-goal percentage from .417 in 2004-05 to .520 in 2005-06, and has also resulted in an improvement in his three-point field-goal percentage, from .392 in 2004-05 to .441 in 2005-06. In fact, Cook's field-goal percentage would rank 10th in the NBA if he was qualified (through the Lakers 69 games in 2005-06, Cook would need to have made 252 field goals to qualify [2], however he has made only 230.) His improved play presumably has also kept Cook on the playing floor more and on the bench less, as his minutes played per game has risen from 15.1 in 2004-05 to 19.4 in 2005-06. He is currently the Lakers scoring leader at the power forward position, averaging 8.3 points per game. (Statistics from the 2005-06 season as of March 21, 2006.)

His lack of a back-to-the-basket game and his tendency to shy away from the physical play has earned some criticism from fans and coaches alike. During the off-season, Cook decided to bulk up and work on his back-to-the-basket game, post moves, and rebounding. However, his defense is still a huge weakness and he has recently vowed to lose weight in order to gain more mobility.

Lakers Players News

Junior Lakers win national title (myKawartha.com) The Peterborough Merit Precision Lakers stand atop the Canadian junior lacrosse mountain. The Lakers downed the Six Nations Arrows 9-5 Saturday in Hagersville to win the Minto Cup - the Lakers' 12th Canadian junior lacrosse championship title but the club's first in 17 years.

Lakers roll over BV, 44-0 (Huron Daily Tribune) SAGINAW — This is what Bill McLellan expected from his Elkton-Pigeon-Bay Port football team this season.

Kobe to Host Event in Korea (NBA.com) "NBA star Kobe Bryant will host a 'talk show' in Seoul on Friday together with Korean-American heartthrob Daniel Henney. The 28-year-old LA Lakers guard, who is touring Asia, will arrive in Seoul on Friday morning for a two-day visit. He will host the 15-minute event in Myong-dong, central Seoul, from 8 p.m., where he is expected to talk about his life and career," reports the KOREA TIMES.

Arrows Express defeat Lakers (Slam! Sports) HAGERSVILLE, Ont. (CP) - Cody Jamieson scored four goals to help the Six Nations Arrows Express advance to the final of the Minto Cup lacrosse tournament with an 8-3 win over the Burnaby Lakers Friday.

NBA Truth & Rumors: Sept. 5, 2006 (Sports Illustrated) Steve Francis said he does not regret his early, wayward years in the NBA, but neither does he blame the Rockets or Magic for the way his career has turned. Francis believes he could be what he was. If he left New York, he said he could be a high-scoring, highlight-reel All-Star.   -- Houston Chronicle

Lakers show progress in loss at Lovelock (Sierra Sun) North Tahoe's football team met the competition Friday night at Lovelock, losing 34-16 to one of the toughest teams in the Northern 2A.

Lakers win Minto Cup (Toronto Sun) IN TOMORROW'S PAPER:

Lakers open year with win (Winsted-Lester Prairie Journal) The Howard Lake-Waverly-Winsted Lakers' football team opened the 2006 season with a 21-6 win over Norwood Young America Thursday. Above, the Lakers' Josh Remer hands the ball off to Jake Young.

Kobe coaches Japanese children (AFP via Yahoo! News) NBA All Star Kobe Bryant coached Tokyo school children at a basketball clinic as Team USA left for home with bronze medals from the World Basketball Championship, which they won without his help.

From The Archives (Syracuse.com) • News Updates

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
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