Take off, you Garba-hosers
PROGRAMMING NOTE: Join us at 11 for Purple, Gold, and Blue. Our guests will be Matt Moore of Hardwood Paroxysm, who organized yesterday's nationwide "Kobe Bryant Blog Day," and Kevin Baxter, baseball writer for the LAT. Click the show widget on the side of the page to tune in.
Because who doesn't love a hybrid of Jose Garbajosa and "Strange Brew?"
The latter is a cult film from Canada, the country housing the Toronto Raptor squad that employs Garbajosa. The same team, incidentally, that the Lakers defeated by a 117-108 margin. The Raptors were working without the services of their all-star power forward Chris Bosh, but during the first quarter, you'da thunk he was out there balling and manning the paint. The Lakers launched 10 shots from behind the arc during that frame alone (32 in all), a tally that displeased Phil Jackson so thoroughly that he opted to play seldom-used Coby Karl as a means of sending a message (in particular to Sasha Vujacic, who still hasn't sold his coach on any "Machine" status, a nickname prompting research from T.J. Simers). The note was not only received, but Karl actually acquitted himself nicely. That "other Kobe" had a quite the ballgame, too. After starting the contest equally guilty of long ball fever, Kobe shifted into a controlled mode, and in turn controlled the game for the Lakers. His 34/7/7 in the box score reflected a night not only found himself typically on the right side of a long jumper, but helped his teammates get a little action of their own. It often looked effortless, at least compared to the time he needed to rack 81 points to put down this same opponent.
The Laker D hasn't been at its best without Andrew Bynum or Trevor Ariza. The former is progressing through work on a futuristic treadmill, while the latter's presence could be duplicated to some degree if the Lakers opt to sign Ira Newble, recently waived after a trade to Seattle.
Kobe Bryant: the all-time #2 with a bullet.
If the Clippers are looking to lift a locker room's spirit and mood down the stretch of a disappointing season, we can all agree, Smush Parker is just what the doctor ordered. He's been recently freed from exile in Miami, a status Pat Riley insists wasn't personal. Sure didn't feel that way, Riles.