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Lakers 111, T-Wolves 108: Result KO's process

Only in the result of Sunday evening's 111-108 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves out on the great frozen north are the realities of the Western Conference standings reflected.  The Lakers, who have more victories than any team in the Association, did it again.  The Wolves, who don't, didn't.  (Or did, depending on your POV...) All the stuff in the middle, though?  It was hard to tell which squad was the Lamar_odom_shoots_over_kevin_love_i dominant one.  The Lakers got major production from their big three- Kobe Bryant: 28/6/7, Pau Gasol: 25/5/5, Lamar Odom: 25/14/3... if you can identify LA's last trio of one-game 25 point scorers without clicking this link, it's officially time to leave the house more often- but were a leaky vessel defensively.  The Timberwolves, hardly a model of offensive efficiency (especially in the absence of Al Jefferson) shot 50% from the floor, aided by too many mental errors from LA.

Pathetic was the word used by Phil Jackson to paint a picture of his team's defensive effort.

There were some positives.  The play of Odom, for example, who displayed versatility difficult for Kevin McHale's crew to counter.  It was his sixth double-double in seven games, and whether through a better understanding of the game or more ability to use all the tools in the box, LO's performance reflects a maturing floor game.

And, of course, there was Kobe Bryant, who passed Laker great Elgin Baylor on the career NBA points list, moving into 20th place with 23,164.  24 doesn't always pay attention to every statistical milestone, but for this one he seemed to have more awareness, especially considering Baylor's place in Lakers history. 

In other news...

 
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Man do we need Drew badly... without him , there is no interior defense at all!! Pau looks kinda reluctant to play that role maybe he is worried that he might get into foul trouble... i expect a better performance from him and LO on defense against OKC..

I really think Kobe is tired.. his jumper looks FLAT!!

Talking of jumpers , did u guys see the PHX-BOS game?? Rondo was hitting jumpers!! if he gets consistent with it, Boston is going to be real hard to beat..

LAKER GURU FROM INDIA

It was ugly but I'll take the W.

And when, oh when will they decide to defend the three point line? And what the heck was the play in the final minutes where all the Lakers had spread the court and one of the Timberwolves seriously just waltzed in and took the layup. No one was anywhere NEAR the paint. That was atrocious defense. I can only imagine what Faith said.

Makes me nervous to think what they'll do on Tuesday against the Thunder. Hopefully they'll be embarrassed enough to not play down to their level.

But like I said, I'll take the W.

BTW Christopher Blake - where they heck have you been?

tsphere,
"4) Tight defense uses up a lot of energy, which can take away from the offensive game. "

That line would get you in trouble in coaching circles! As well as the so-called basketball "purists"...

I understand what you are saying,but I guess you are saying that you would rather be a dominant offensive team that sometimes play D, then be a dominant D team that sometimes play O.

Of course, most people would say that the dominant D model has worked in the past decade pretty well (Detroit, San Antonio, Boston)

That argument is typically that D is something that cant be light-switched on.

For one, give a NBA team confidence and all of us sudden the backup PG is hitting Kobe shots.

Bad habits manifest themselves at the wrong times. Last nite, Luke leaves MikE Miller a top NBA shooter in the corner to help on ...gulp.. Sebastian Telfair.

Defense is about trust and knowing where your help is going to come from. If anybody slacks on D, it creates mistrust amongst defenders, players start to overcompensate for others, go for steals, and basically dont stick to their role which results in mistrust late game.

If Walton leaves Miller open for 3, then next time maybe Kobe doesnt play tight D on his man, cuz he isnt sure if Walton will do his job right.

Maybe Odom sees that Farmar is getting beat 1-on-1 all game, so he decides to leave his man earlier than normal to get the shot block. Now Odom's man gets a easy layup or rebound and we blame Odom.

It's way too much "variable" and left to chance if a team decides NOT to play defense the same way consistently. You are setting yourself up for disaster.

That's why I want to buy the story of "light switch D" for certain games, but I know that to get a chip sustained defensive effort and intensity is the only way to go. The Lakers dont doesnt have to be dominant, just consistent.

Otherwise, it could be Kobe for 3 from 40 feet to win the game.... Not a bad option, but still!

I'll take an ugly win over a pretty loss any day of the week. But, yeah, this one was hard to watch. These Lakers seem to have the same habits of the last championship Lakers: they play great ball against the elite teams in the league, but don't get up too much for the sub-.500s.

I'd like to see a good ol' fashioned blowout game, too.

Go Lake Show!

Good Morning Charles....Good Morning Everyone...

well at least you can't say it wasn't another game that kept your interest until the final buzzer sounded....and it served it's purpose as being entertainment (though one man's entertainment is another man's torture---see the previous thread etc.)...

should I mention the 7 free throw misses that would have nilified the above mentioned "entertainment / torture"...

we all want the Lakers to play up to their ability in every game, sometimes like Chick used to say they have (like the rest of us) simply a bad day at work...

what I do like seeing is the way we fight back through these sub par games and eventually grab a victory from the preverbial jaws of defeat (hey at least it isn't the other way around)...to me that is very encouraging and a sign that we are a Championship caliber team---those are the teams that find a way to win games no matter how..

and hopefully the team and coaching staff adresses the lack of defense exhibited last night and learn from it and continue to grow and keep focused on the ultimate goal at the end of the rainbow..

did I mention free throws?

for me ultimately EVERY game is bitchin' to watch, regardless of how we play (and yeah I would rather watch us play great), it seems like watching your kids play or something, these guys seem so familiar and that they belong to all of us--so up or down, great or crapy, the Lake Show, as some, but not me, refer to it, is always the best ticket in town or in your living room...

"Sitting on a cornflake, waiting for th van to come"

"I can't help but notice that all the characters in your films have these rather large prominent front teeth"

AS ALWAYS, AS EVER, YET ANOTHER GREAT DAY (AND SEASON) TO BE A LAKER FAN !!!

GO LAKERS !!!

AS ALWAYS, AS EVER, YET ANOTHER GREAT DAY (AND SEASON) TO BE A LAKER FAN !!!

GO LAKERS !!!
Posted by: Floyd | February 23, 2009 at 09:20 AM

Well said Floyd!!

Korey,
I wasn't recommending loose D, just noticing that it often happens in games against weaker opponents, and somewhat paradoxically, in games that we end up winning (the November game in Indiana was an interesting exception). There's a pattern and as Sherlock Holmes might say, wherever there's a pattern there may be clue.

I was also suggesting that it could be read as a measure for energy conservation over a long season, as others have also pointed out. And I think the poor periphery defense is something Phil Jackson doesn't seem to mind... except

1) when it is too repetitive
2) when it happens at the end of a close game where the difference between a 2 and a 3 is critical to the outcome.

But yes, I think everyone agrees with your analysis of what they should do in every game. Still it's natural for players - much more than coaches - to have a different sense of urgency from game to game. That inevitably makes us fans feel uncomfortable. But when the team delivers Ws with the consistency were seeing, it's difficult to be ask for more. If, however, the pattern develops into a pathology that allows more than the occasional game to slip away, yes, it's time to push the players further. But the cost may also be pushing them beyond their limit, which of course makes things worse.

I also think about Phil's famous complaint that Kobe would let high school games nearly slip away in order to deliver some last minute heroics. Without projecting that on either the 30 year old Kobe or the team as a whole, I sometimes wonder whether that isn't a source of cheap thrills that can actually motivate a team.

In any case, I'm just observing and wondering, not judging. I think the coaching staff is there for that rather than the blog.

The bench without Odom is weaker right now.

That will improve somewhat as they learn how to make better use of Powell. How much it improves remains to be seen, and will play a big role in determining the playoff rotation.

It could be 8, 9, or 10 deep.

Farmar and Ariza will clearly be part of that rotation off the bench, as will one of Odom/Bynum/Walton (depending on what PHJ does with the starting lineup after Bynum's return). The question marks are Vujacic and Powell

Loved the WIN, I will take them any way we can get them, good, bad & the ugly....

Speaking of Elgin Baylor...

I hope none of these teams pull a stunt like Elgin did last year. He knew we were in the hunt for the title and he also knew Sam I am was going to sign with the Celtics... the team that Baylor could never beat.

Well, Baylor's decision came back to haunt the Purple and Gold once again.

Now let's hope teams like NY or SAC don't pull an Elgin this year... wait until March 2nd to buy out the contract!


Serveral problems current Lakers has:

1. second unit sux too much in the last 8 games.

2. because of 1, guys like kobe and paul had to play hard every game and loooked like so tired after the 6 road games, I do not see Kobe and Paul defend much at all, and kobe's jump was not good either,

If Bynum does not come before April, I think Lakers should rest Kobe and Paul one of every two games after they hit 50 wins mark. Just like spur, they let their big 3 rest in the same one game.

If Kobe and Paul keep playing like current stress level, I think Lakers will get serious trouble after April.


more thoughts seemingly,

it does seem that our defense (and in light of Bynum being absent etc) is still a work in progress...

a couple of things that stand out to me,

1) sometimes I think Pau shows too early in his help coverage of the point guard above the three point line--

sometimes he does this without his man going up to set a screen--if done too early, it opens up the lane quite a bit and if he is too high up, his recovery time back to the basket is obviously lengthend...

just needs to read the offense a little longer before committing to the high help defense...

2) I realize that our defensive scheme is to essentially give up the low percentage 3 point shot--but there has to be some recognition on who the more consistent shooters are on the other team and not to give them consistent open looks--I also realize that takes a lot of effort and concentration, but it can be improved upon

and maybe the guy guarding their hottest shooter should never help and simply stay with his man (and like Coach Dale said " think of him like chewing gum, at the end of the game I want to know what flavor he is"---Dentyne
anyone?)

3) our other major defensive problem (like every other team in league) is of course dribble penetration (isn't there a joke there about don't dribble before you shoot---not too mention needing great ball movement?)

this kind of goes along with number one above, and how our point guard covers his man with help from our center, as well as having players slide over to cover the lane which leaves 3 point shoots open (see number two)

and there in lies the rub as some dude with an oversized collar once said...

wish I knew the answer for that little Catch 22 (along with every coach in the league)..."that's some catch that Catch 22"...

the good news is we really seem to get up for the big games and our defense can be quite effective---and like Stu said we just have a habit of showing that said defense in one quarter (especially) against the lesser teams---so far against the better teams we have showed it for more than one quarter...

all the players and the coaches (as well as Faith and other astute bloggers) all agree that they have to play hard and consistent on the defensive end to win it all this year (and beyond)...and again I am optimistically hoping our defense is indeed a work in progress and will indeed progress...

and when it really counts I think this Laker team will play the defense needed to win it all...

GO LAKERS !!!

is it Tuesday yet?

GO LAKERS !!!

Dara -

Who's Paul? You probably mean Pau.

They're all playing heavy minutes due to Drew being out. It's going to take it's toll. They're doing what needs to be done to protect home court during the finals. Phil will do the right thing by them and let them rest. He as much said so recently. He's not ruling out sitting them.

Regarding Kobe: Set aside the comparison with MJ. How many of you would take Kobe over Magic to start a Lakers team? How many of you would take Kobe over Jerry West to start a team?

Hopefully, the answer is: None of you. Their talent levels are comparable, but mentally, Magic and West had it all over Kobe, and that makes all the difference. They were men at a young age; Kobe remains a little boy at 30.

Sorry, but I'd take Kobe over West. His skill level and athletic ability are far superior.

What a box score from last night!!

And I'm mainly talking about the shot attempts. IMO, the perfect balance:

-Fish___8
-Kobe___21
-Pau___13
-LO___14
-Luke___8
-Farmar___5
-Sasha___2
-Trevor___6
-Powell___5
-BMenga___0

GO LAKERS!!!!!!!

dan

Magic over Kobe


jimjoyce,

I would take Magic over Kobe any day of the week..

But Jerry West? No way.

Mentally tougher then Kobe? I don't think so..At least Kobe didn't lose in the finals like 7 times in a row! lol

Pathectic was the word of the Day.

All I said through the whole game was how pathectic the D is.

Then right after the game Phil states how PATHECTIC that defense was.

Then Worthy states how PATHECTIC the D was.

I will pull a Butler and say that was a LOSS last night.

HURRY BACK ANDREW!!

NO ANDREW NO CHAMPIONSHIP!!

PATHECTIC DEFENSE LAKERS!!!

Best Record...great...but the defense SUCKS!!!!

Nothing has changed...No Bynum No Championship!!

The layup drill that we see when Andrew is not in there really concerns me. I really think with our PGS not being able to keep a paperweight out of the key just proves to me that Andrew is the Magical Key to the Championship.

BD

Korey, no need for apology posted a message on the previous thread. Good day pal.

Farmar and Luke should interchange their upsides. Luke should get Farmar's approach of shoot first at any opportunity and acquire Farmar's speed in beating his guard. Farmar should get Luke's talent in passing the ball, looking for the open man or acting as a court general in instituting the plays. Currently, both have different mindset the PG wants to shoot first before passing while the SF would like to pass first before shooting or would not even try to buy a basket. Luke always look for Kobe on expiring time even when Kobe is heavily guarded, thereby when he gets the ball he has not alternative but to release it or else it is a sure T/O.

Teams like T'wolves & Thunder are the chances of seeing the bench players like Shannon and Morrison. Well, we saw Mbenga and becoming a regular player Powell. If it were not a close game, the other two or one of them could have played to rest Fisher. The 15th slot still open but Lakers take their time of filling it whether Moore, Horry or another big. As such we stretch our veterans out there and endangering of further injury that could compromise playoffs. Perhaps, those were the important roles for the players that we traded but FO preferred to reduce costs without any insurance or safeguards to the regulars.

If you are comparing the entirety of Magic's career and West's career to a reasonable expectation of what the entirety of Kobe's career will be, then I would take Kobe over both of them.

There is no one who is even close to Kobe at his position; Magic and West had opponents who were at least close, and in some seasons better, at their position.

Just saw the comments about Magic vs Kobe.

All I got to say to the Laker brothers out there is that if they pick Kobe over Magic then they never saw Magic play. Simple as that.

Geez you do know that the Lakers were in the finals for 8 out of 10 years and won 5 during the Showtime years.

That was when you could say Laker Nation was really spoiled. Nothing has ever been better than the Showtime Decade.

BD

Magic over Kobe anyday. Magic would make Trevor Ariza into an all star.

Magic has whole court awareness, size, and speed that will never be matched. You hear me Lebron? Never.

Magic over Jordan....now that is the question.

Guess who I'd take? Hint: he only played for 1 team his entire career.

A few observations/questions...

I can't believe I'm about to write this, but does anyone else want to see even more of Mbenga? I thought he looked like the only guy out there besides Lamar at times who was interested in defending the rim.

Which reminds me...Farmar has to be the worst defender in the league. He's like a magnet to screens and can't even keep guys in front of him one-on-one. Our pick and roll defense is bad enough, but get Farmar out there and you might as well just usher the opposing PG to the cup. It's frustrating.

One more observation - does anyone think Powell is getting a little shot-happy? I don't mind him taking the open 12-18 footer - he can hit that. But when he gets the ball in the post, it's like an automatic turnover or awkward looking brick waiting to happen. I'm pretty sure "Powell 12 foot fallaway with man in his face" isn't the best option we can get on offense.

OK. Any win is a good win especially on the road.

Here's hoping that we go up by 30 by the 3rd quarter in OKC and against the Suns so that Pau can get some rest.

Kobe & the bench dudes seem flat & tired and are missing too many shots. Of course without Drew Lamar is no longer coming in fresh off the bench anymore so maybe that has affected them.

GO LAKERS!!!

It is difficult to compare players that played in different eras and sets of rules. It is better to leave it as it is, they are all hall of famers. Well, during the time of West & Baylor despite their God given talents, they are still no match at the much vaunted Celtics Bill Russell and Jones Bros etc. That's how the leprechaun fables spread, the funny bounces of ball at Boston Garden, it's all favoring the Celtic mystique. Mr Cooke, the Lakers owners tried everything to win it in '69, Nelson rim bouncing shot spoiled the celebration.

Maybe we can chalk up the nonsense to the odd/early start time? It was a 2pm PST start.

I am more worried about the penetration defense than anything else with this team and we have 27 games to tighten up the loose screws.

I think the bench is having a bit of trouble right now but look at the big picture - their floor leader (LO) was elevated and that's a major adjustment since he had the ball in his hands a lot. Then Vlad and Mihm are traded causing further bench "disruption".

Its definitely your own POV but there is an adjustment period and so I am not really concerned. We have another month (at least) without AB17, so the bench has to really get some run here and step up w/o LO and hold on to leads.

If you recall early in the season - the spin to get LO to accept his role was to provide leadership to the youngsters and floor/ball movement ability. That is now gone and there is no "floor general" for the bench. Pau isn't going to be that guy - his role in playing with the bench is to be the "big" - he doesn't have the ball unless someone gets it to him. Which means LO and/or MVP have to take that lead but they need the rest.

KBros - maybe we need a blog poll as to who is the current "floor general" on the bench. I would be VERY surprised if there was any concensus. As a matter of fact - I would say the "there is none" would be the most popular option.

Hence - PJ's conundrum.....rest and let the bench play through or give the starters rest. I vote rest when we can during games.

It's a leadership thing right now and there is nobody on the bench who is a true leader (staying within the system, making every one follow along and giving them confidence to take a shot).

So while PJ is showing "patience" - much to the blogs disdain - he has no choice. He is trying to PATIENTLY determine who is the leader of that group w/o a starter.

IMHO this is our current bench weakness - it's not one specific player. So, maybe that extra roster spot for a seasoned vet/floor leader is exactly what is needed. But like Mitch said - he doesn't see anyone out there to fit the bill. And I don't either.

We have to work through these types of games as the bench gets acclimated to all the latest disruptions to their basketball lives. Patience is a virtue laker blog friends.

PJ has a grand plan and that is another RING!!! Don't lose sight of the end goal - it is a marathon.

GO LAKERS!!!

Lots of talk about how Bynum's absence is hurting the Lakers defense. True. However, Bynum doesn't guard shooters at the 3 point line when the Lakers are ahead late in games. When is someone (Rambis?) going to be held accountable for the Lakers being one of the worst perimeter defensive teams in the league late in games where they are winning? How hard is it to just guard the 3 point line and give up anything inside?

#4 and BD - you guys said it.

Magic was the ultimate team player and PLAYED ALL 5 positions. That's ability, talent and winning attitude. His court vision was impeccable. And he made ALL of his teammates better. Finally, the only antics we ever saw out of him were to get Westhead fired. And thank goodness for that.

GO LAKERS!!!

I will take Kobe...With Kareem and worthy ac green and byron scott

dara,

>>>1. second unit sux too much in the last 8 games.

Not really. The last two games yes, but 17 by Ariza and 16 by Powell
vs Golden State were essential in that victory. In the Atlanta
game, the top of the bench (Ariza, Farmar, Sasha) were fine. It was
the Mihm/Powell/Morrison/Brown combo that sucked the fun out of
the win. In the Utah game, it was Kobe's 14-33 that killed them
more than the bench mob.

The thing is, not every player is going to excel every night.
Some nights Lamar will come up with 25 points for you. Other
nights it's 12. Some nights Kobe will shoot 50%. Other nights,
it's 40%. And some nights the bench mob will come through,
and others they won't.

The saving grace for the Lakers is that they have enough
weapons that one or two pieces can have a bad night and
the other guys can make up for it.

Andrew Bernard,

It's a question of where the help comes from.

If Bynum is in the middle and a guy beats his man into the lane, the wings can stay home because of Bynum.

On the other hand, if Bynum is not in the middle, someone from the wing has to sag and try to thwart the driver.... then you have drive and kick.

You're right that Bynum isn't guarding shooters, but his presence helps the defense guard those shooters.

> chickNstu

Yikes, I read that and it just felt WRONG to me. I love Magic and he is still my favorite sports figure of all time. HE is the reason I am a Laker fan.

The question of who is better is unanswerable. Too many dynamics involved.

Fellows bloggers,

I suggest we put to rest all those arguing who over who, different eras in basketball, different rules (hand checking, zone D and etc.) can not compare and... It has nothing to do with discussion regarding current state of the Lakers.

I agree with some of you, who suggested with LO out of 2nd unit, well, second unit went from strongest in the NBA, to, how to put politely, state of flux?

Farmar... Sometimes love him, at times - ready to kill. Biggest issue, can he stay in front of any PG in NBA? And I’m not even talking premiere PGs like CP3, DWill. It seems to me as soon as rotation went at the end of 1st quarter and second unit got on the floor we’re getting burn by PG position more. I don’t recall is he ever took charge, maybe should take lessons from Fish. My second problem, why playing on the high pace he is mostly looking to create own shot or get to the basket. It seems kind of strange mentality for floor “general”, esp on the 2ns unit. Another thing, his midrange jumper is very shaky, so his FT %. As of now he is shooting less than 60% FT and don’t afraid to call it unacceptable to NBA guard.

Sasha.. I don’t know where to start. As having shooter mentality he suppose to shoot, but common, Sasha is shooting now miserable 37% from the floor and 35% from 3pt line. What is going on? He was only teasing us with his numbers last year, coincidentally a contract year, or what? He went from arguably 6th man from the last year to 1st man to the bench.

Powell.. I got to tell to Kevin Ding from OC Register, it’ll be a while before he will be remotely billed as a “cheaper” version of LO. Now we know, for the past 6-8 games Lamar playing one of the best basketball of his career as a pro. Josh? From the game of 16 points to the game of 2 points and another last one with 6. Yes, he has maybe better midrange jump shot but it’ll awhile before he can finish like LO near the basket. Not to mention, I’m not sure if he can create his own shot as LO can.

Trevor. Only one from the bench that I don’t have a problem except of one, little less “steal-related” gamble, just good old fashioned D. He is definitely a keeper.

Kobe is dead tired.

Someone needs to find a way to get him a vacation for a week.

Shut him down.

His jumper is off and his reluctance to drive is giving us issues.


Anybody else realize that if Dan Issel combined his ABA scoring with his NBA total he would have totally beaten Kareeems scoring mark? That dude could score!

Thanks to those who responded to my question regarding Magic, West and Kobe.

Probably the answers depended on the age of the responders.

For those who think Kobe's skill level is "far superior" to Jerry West: Chick Hearn is doubled over with laughter in his grave. You youngsters just don't know!!

jimhoyce,

I grew up in the 80s so I missed West..But I've seen plenty of video and classic finals games. The guy had no where the athletically ability of Kobe Bryant..He couldn't jump like Kobe Bryant..He couldn't lock down a defender and score 40 like Kobe Bryant. He was just not as good of an athlete as Kobe Bryant.

As far as basketball skill? Jerry West would be to first to tell you Kobe is better then him!

Kobe looked tired last night but he is not tired overall..He probably spent to long in the weight room

You're right. West put up huge numbers when he was playing against the superior atheletes of his day. I think he even put up 90 in one game, plus he could defend larger/bigger players of today with no sweat.

We're talking a WAY better athlete than a LeBron.

Kobe is just a shmuck compared to the logo.

Come on, I'm not here to compare the generations because they're not comparable. But show me some footage of the logo showing off his skillset.

I can believe Elgin was on par with Kobe. I cannot believe West was. Sorry.

But who cares. We're winning and that's all I care about.

Kobe is one of the top 2 or 3 shooting guards of all time...

but good shooting guards are a dime a dozen.

Top level centers and point guards are much harder to find.

I would take a full career of Magic, Kareem, or Shaq over a full
career of Kobe. Jerry West is a lot closer comparison to Kobe. He
was more of a combo guard than a point guard. That would be
a tough call for me. The Bean is more athletic and has more tricks
than Zeke from Cabin Creek, but if Kobe played in West's era
and vice versa, I'm not really sure we wouldn't be saying the
opposite. I can't say for sure that if Jerry West was playing
right now we wouldn't be asking if he was better than Chris Paul,
for example.

That one's a draw for me.

But if we're taking their actual careers that actual happened
when playing for the Lakers, I'll take Kobe's 3 championships
(and counting) over Jerry West's 1 championship.

Jonnyv

My point was Magic had a better supporting cast. Thats all. Magic was Great and so is Kobe.

GO LAKERS

Magic versus Kobe -

My two favorite Lakers of all time. Although Jerry West was one of the all-time greats, he straight out does not belong in this debate.

Passing - big edge to Magic
Midrange game - big edge to Kobe
3 point shooting - big edge to Kobe
Post up - edge to Kobe
Defense - big edge to Kobe
Mental strength - even
Killer Instinct - even
Leadership - edge to Magic
Versatility - edge to Magic
Athleticism - edge to Kobe

Winner - edge to Kobe

When we gonna see a good game from the Lakers? It's been more than a week now that we last saw a game we can be proud of and that was against Atlanta (at home) That was another lousy win against the lowly Timberwolves (without their no.1 a player) If they keep on playing like this either San Antonio or Utah Jazz will surely kick their butt in the playoff.

Serveral problems current Lakers has:

1. second unit sux too much in the last 8 games.

2. because of 1, guys like kobe and paul had to play hard every game and loooked like so tired after the 6 road games, I do not see Kobe and Paul defend much at all, and kobe's jump was not good either,

If Bynum does not come before April, I think Lakers should rest Kobe and Paul one of every two games after they hit 50 wins mark. Just like spur, they let their big 3 rest in the same one game.

If Kobe and Paul keep playing like current stress level, I think Lakers will get serious trouble after April.


Posted by: dara | February 23, 2009 at 09:50 AM

=====================
I agree about the rest for the starters. PJ is wearing them down on rolling the dice for another championship. I think he needs to utilize the bench more and deeper to still get the best record and rerst the core starters.

Mbenga came in and had 2 blocked shots in a few mitutes. Pau played whta about 36-39 minutes. Mbenga could have played later in the game and played 3-4 minutes more and Pau would have a little more rest. Rember he and Kobe played in the Olympics too.

The way things are going the core players will be worn out by playoffs and Kobe's career will have been shortened. Not ideal for Lakers.

The bench has played relatively well but the loss of LO to the starters weakens them a bit. The return of AB will help on all counts as 2 of our 4 dominant players can be on the floor at all times.

there are games like this in which it seems like the team are not giving their 100% effort, i guess, they intend to do that in order to save their energy in high energy-needing games. you know, games against .500 teams. it looks like they become complacent with sub par teams, but for me, i guess, they are just saving their energy.. just a thought..
Go Lakers!!!

Wow, that David Falk article is an eye-opening. It does make a lot sense. Thanks AK.


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