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Lakers 108, Miami 107: Game winning shot strengthens Kobe Bryant's All Star bid

Because you'd rather watch this guy...

...instead of these guys...

Kamenetzkys Acting Stupid

...we'll skip the traditional video introduction. Breakdown below...

THREE GOOD:  

     -Kobe Bryant: Ironically, the guy almost walked away more "goat" than G.O.A.T., having air-balled into a 24 second violation with twenty-five seconds remaining. (And lest any wigs be flipped, no, Bryant wouldn't have literally been the goat, as the Lakers were hardly forging one for the time capsule before Kobe's miss, but I found the phrasing a fairly clever play on words, so I ran with it. Calm down.) Then came the "Off-Balance Running Bank Shot Off The Wrong Foot Heard Around The World"- known from here on out as O.B.R.B.S.O.T.W.F.H.A.T.W, because that's very easy to remember- which even Bryant couldn't believe dropped through the cylinder.

"It was the luckiest shot I've ever taken. By far," smiled Bryant. 

But even if Kobe gives more credit to a rabbit's foot hidden somewhere inside Staples Center than his own skill set, the shot was nonetheless jaw dropping- the kids absolutely dig it- a dramatic capper for a night already chock full of big plays: 

    Another buzzer beater before halftime, falling backwards (and eventually on his butt) while losing his balance amidst Miami bodies in the lane. A stretching layup with his legs undercut and body upended as Jermaine O'Neal was called for blocking. Getting Dorrell Wright to take his pump fake bait before rising to can the "and one" jumper. Hitting a similar shot when Wright didn't leave his feet.  A trey drilled in Michael Beasley's face. A gorgeous lefty hook after flashing across the lane to receive the perfect feed from Ron Artest. Throw in how well he defended- and drew fouls against- Dwyane Wade, who made some big plays down the stretch but also shot just 7-21 with 24 largely hounding him, and this rounded out to yet another notch on Kobe's belt, which is big enough by now to fit around Fat Albert's waist. Twice.

    And speaking of big moments, Derek Fisher's overall effort was something of a mixed bag, particularly in the area of shot selection. But we wouldn't even be analyzing a Laker win without his clutch three pointer with four seconds remaining.  Something about that particular number (4) seems to bring out the best in Fisher. Point four. Fourth quarter, where he grabbed an offensive rebound in traffic that set up another of Kobe's key buckets. Say what you want about Fisher's streak shooting and often maddening forays to the hoop,but if the game's on the line, damn right I want the dude on my side.  And credit his accountability, nothing after the game that "had I hit a couple more earlier in the game, we wouldn't have been in that situation."

    -Pau Gasol: 22 points on 8-16 shooting, eight rebounds and, most notably, one very swollen eye, courtesy of an inadvertent kick to the face from Lamar Odom (who else?). Gasol also attracted an elbow or two from backup center/first string goon Jamal Magloire, which prompted some jawing from El Spaniard (who also got a little chippy with Anthony Randolph last Saturday against Golden State). Gasol absorbed more than his share of blows and may not have re-entered the game so quickly after his peeper injury had LO not gotten the heave ho. But that's how the ball bounces sometimes, and Gasol's "teeth grit" factor was pretty admirable during the game's final minutes.

    -Turnovers: Only seven on the night, and just one in the first half.  Whenever the A-Game is absent, clearly the case tonight, carelessness with the ball (or the reverse) can often be the difference between getting by and coming up just short. Safe to say, a few more gaffes with the rock would have likely cooked the Lakers' goose. 

AK

VIDEO:

Kobe, because you shouldn't have to scroll all the way down, given what he did tonight:

THREE BAD:

This is one I really want to see again on the DVR replay. There were definitely some poor moments, and the Lakers weren't clicking Friday like they had the previous seven games in the winning streak, but at the same time, not everything was cut and dried. So everything you'll read below has something of a built in caveat. Did Derek Fisher play well? Not really. 4-10 shooting, 1-4 from downtown, three turnovers against three dimes. At the same time, he hit the uber-clutch three with 4.3 left, and Kobe doesn't hit his incredible and-one over Jermaine O'Neal in the fourth without Fisher gathering the board off Kobe's missed shot seconds before. 

You see where I'm going with this. 

    -Fourth Quarter Pick and Roll Defense: For much of the game, the Lakers did well to keep the Heat, and particularly Dwyane Wade, out of the paint. Wade was only 2-9 in the first half, and as a team Miami was outscored in the paint 38-20. They lived on jumpers, which to their credit they hit, but the Lakers can live with that. As the game progressed, though, Miami began to extend the screens higher up the floor, forcing LA's bigs to either come out in space to try to trap or force the ball from Wade's hands, or clog the lane once Wade arrived. Too often, the Lakers did the latter, and Wade picked them apart. 20 points, fueled by 14 trips to the line. As a team, Miami won the final quarter in the paint, 14-8.

Kobe and Fish both gave credit to Miami coach Erik Spoelstra for springing Wade with a change in strategy late in the fourth (instead of using a big to screen, the Heat ran their pick and roll using both guards). It caught the Lakers flat-footed, and got them what they needed. 

    -Shooting: Here's an area, two huge triples in the final five seconds notwithstanding, where the Lakers struggled all night. Ron Artest was 4-17 from the floor, Shannon Brown 1-5, Fish 4-10. Overall, the Lakers were 3-15 from beyond the arc for the first 47:56 of the contest. Good looks didn't go down, bad looks didn't go down. Really, they seemed to do better with circus shots, like the one Kobe hit at the end of the first half, bouncing off contact and fading away along the baseline. That was pretty sick. Even Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol, who combined to shoot 50% on 30 shots between them, still missed a few chippies over smaller opponents. LA's struggles to get the ball to fall were appropriate on a night where nothing seemed to come easy. Fish found himself on the wrong end of multiple collisions, Gasol was hit in the face at least three times, including once by Lamar Odom, and (not to sound like a shill for the home team) it really did seem like the Heat scored perhaps a dozen points off broken plays.

    -Lamar Odom: He had as many ejections as field goals. Since you can only get kicked out of a game one time, I'll let you figure out how many buckets he produced. On the incident that got him kicked out- a second technical with 5:07 to go- Lakers fans will say O'Neal intentionally wrapped his legs around Odom after a dunk. Heat loyalists will claim he was merely hanging on the rim in an effort not to come down on L.O. Either way, Odom needed to keep his composure, and not get baited into a shoving match. To that point, though, he'd only played about 21 minutes, reflective of a scattered, uneven game. 

ONE LAST THING:

    -BMX? Really? Seriously? In the videos above, Kobe attributes his ability to hit this particular kind of shot, moving hard in one direction, shooting behind himself in the other, draws on experience riding BMX bikes as a kid. As he told it, Kobe and his buddies would toss pebbles at telephone poles as they rode by, the stakes being candy or pop. It's a wonderful story, full of charm and innocence. But seriously, Kobe, as you slipped after receiving the inbound, found yourself double teamed by Wade and Udonis Haslem, moved hard to your left and leaped back to shoot over the oustretched arm of Wade, were you really thinking, "This is just like those times I used to throw pebbles at telephone poles on my BMX bike as a kid!" Really? Like Luke Skywalker hearkening back to his days picking off womp rats in Beggar's Canyon on his way to blowing up the Death Star? He admits the shot was lucky, but the athleticism it took to get the ball even in the vicinity of the rim- let alone in it- is pretty staggering.

I'm not calling him a liar... but frankly, people, I'm just not buying this explanation. Wonderful copy, no question, but there's an element of hokum in there, I gotta think. Thus, I'm going with "there's not a shot on the planet I haven't practiced in one form or another. Literally none. You see this shot? I spent a summer working on that, but never bothered filming it" as an explanation of how that ball went down. On the other hand, it did give me a chance to ask one of the greatest basketball players to ever walk the planet a question referencing the BMX classic Rad. For that, I'm eternally grateful.

BK

MORE VIDEO:

Fish, on the value of a tough win:

On his clutch three, and Kobe's as well:

Artest, on Kobe's game winner:

PJ on the game:

Bynum, on Kobe's shot, the game generally:

 
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Dude.

DUDE.

That felt like a Finals game or something. I'm still on a high. Sure, we didn't play great, but damn, Kobe and Fish come through in the clutch.

Wheeeeee!!!

And poor Pau. He's gonna have a black eye tomorrow, I think.

Thanks for thinking of me oucchhhh.

I was floored and often disgusted by our lack of D. For a team that boasts the overall lead in opponent FG% we neither put forth that kind of effort nor did we manage to correct our mental mistakes. The same breakdowns tended to happen over and over again. The bigs were in my opinion the guiltiest. If you just examine boards alone.

That said it was a victory, 8 straight if I'm not mistaken and one very sweet shot by the Bean. On a night where it seemed as if our physical team was being out hustled, out physical-led and at times out execution-ed (esp on O), Kobe showed all of us that there is one weapon no one in the league can match and that is the greatness of the Bean. Sometimes the game comes down to not effort but heart and with Fish (see previous shot) and Kobe we got 2 hearts of a champion in our team that just will not quit. I'm proud to have these 2 in the laker purple and gold and may long live as lakers.

Go Kobe! Go Fish! Go Lakers!

"It's a wonderful story, full of charm and innocence"

I laughed out loud at that one. That's one of the most hilariously sarcastic kiss-offs I've ever come across.

I LOVE Ron Artest.... he's the man... "I knew it's going in"

Kinda funny the comments on the live chat yerterday.
Full of haters, non-believers, and the occasional trolls.

I most enjoyed re-reading this part:

10:24 [Comment From LAL_FanLAL_Fan: ]
Kobe lost this game for us, thanks

Friday December 4, 2009 10:24 LAL_Fan
[Comment From Kobefan in CupertinoKobefan in Cupertino: ]
FISH AND HIS JUMPERS COST US

Way to go guys!
Gotta believe till the end. Fisher and Kobe already taught us that a number of times.

LO should never ever get thrown out. Replacing him in the closing minutes of a tight game throws the team out of sync.

First thought - "I don't believe what I just saw"! I then preceded to laugh uncontrolably for reasons currently unknown.

I don't get the title. Kobe's all star 'bid'? Kobe Bryant being present on the all star team has gotta be considered a _given_, does it not?

AK/BK,

Re: "You see this shot? I spent a summer working on that, but never bothered filming it"

LeBron James takes exception to that comment.

Sometimes it hard to watch D. Fish slow the Lakers pace on both ends. Often wonder why PJ doesn't play Farmar more.
However, D. Fish does come through.

D. Fish didn't play well especially fourth quarter, but D. Fish showed up at the end.

An ending for the ages, even if the game wasn't. One of those games where you just don't have it together. Happens a few times over the course of 82. I though for 46 minutes, that's okay, this is an ugly win. Then for about 1:51 I thought, oh, it's getting away, well that happens. Then came the last 9.3. Amazing.


Odom arguing about O'Neill wrapping his legs around him will be damaged by the fact that Lamar had wrapped up one of Jermaine's legs in his arm. O'Nell did hang on the rim on consecutive posessions.


I actually thought overall Fisher played a decent game. His hands were active on D. For most of the game the Lakers guards combined to hold Wade in check. Fish had 5 boards. A couple of his misses were on plays where the offense broke down and he was forced into bad shots. A couple bad shots he wasn't forced intooubt Got beat a few times by Wade, but so were Kobe and Artest. Nice little three at the end.


Farmear payed well too.


Best thing about this game was getting a win. It was not pretty. Would have liked to see more pounding into the post against this team, especially in the fourth. The Lakers often start games going inside, and then give it up later in the game.


Kobe was incredible. A clinic. Hitting tough shots that were actually good shots to take. He willed this one.


Tom D.

So I'm recalling the words of a Mr. Joyce about Kobe passing the ball more...

:)

I thought that the pupper commercial was so appropriate. I have two
words for you: Black Mamba!

Forgot to give props to Cheryl Miller:

The whole kung fu ripping the heart of the chest while it was
still beating..... CLASSIC!!!

Can we stop picking on D-Fish and Farmar now?

Good morning,

I suspect that I'm not the only one who included the Gift of Kobe Bryant among the things I'm thankful for in my morning prayer. Aces! Watching the closing shot after it left his hands, I was sure it was going in, even if Kobe wasn't. My only question at the time was, was there enough time on the clock? Apparently the ice water in his veins slows down not only his heart rate, but time itself.

From the opening buzzer, it seemed to be that it had been so long since the Lakers had faced a real opponent, that they had forgotten what it's like. As a fan, I experienced the same thing. I was simply not used to the intensity of watching a real contest. To those like Nemaia who were offended with my impatience during the game thread, my apologies.

That said, even though PJ defended Lamar after the game on the first technical, LO was more Kardashian than All-Star for most of his 21 minutes of run.

As for Fish, I'm glad he took some responsibility for the situation the Lakers were in during the closing minutes. But I guess I need to be ok with his early crappy shots if the dude is simply finding his stroke for those crucial shots when it really counts.

At the end of the day, the other teams in the league should be terrified by the Lakers. They're so good and so well-coached that even in a game where they can't find their rhythm -- a game where they were mostly out-hustled and out-executed -- they're still capable of pulling out the W.

It was wonderful to see the other players rally around Kobe at the end of the game. I wanted to do so myself, had I been able to figure out a way to jump through the TV screen and onto the floor. Can I see that replay again, please? The new NBA promo should be, "Kobe Bryant, who makes Amazing happen!

BK,

Kobe wasn't trying to explain the BMX experience gave him the ability to hit that shot, he was trying to explain the geometry and physics (angles, motion) that he learned from the BMX experience on how to hit a shot like that.

They don't practice a shot like that in the NBA.

"strengthen's Kobe's all-star bid" - hahaha, that's pretty good.

re: the story about pebbles, it's not all that far-fetched. Ingrained muscle memory is real... if you look at all the seminal influences, early habits, things that NBA players learn early around the hoop or in athletics in general, it all goes into the mix. Yes, it's good copy but I think there's an element of truth there.

Kobe & Fish late treys saved a L game, that's what Lakers all about. They kept on digging until found a golden opportunity to win at the last moment. In the end, Lakers is still Kobe and without him, it is hard to repeat.

Well, it was not a Laker night, they were out of sync and forcing shots whether Drew, Artest or Gasol. They have to pass the ball first and find the open man than just getting spoiled of going to the hoop on their own. Quality teams like the Heat were prepared for those post plays so why not try another trick. Well, the Lakers weakness lately was perimeter shooting. When Kobe or Fisher shots go on vacation, the rest follow w/ the slump. Shannon could not buy a shot but goo enough for D, Farmar has a good offense last night but his D is still questionable. Sasha and Ammo are useless when they are the ones supposedly providing the outside shooting firepower. Therefore, unless those two bench players contribute, Lakers will depend too much on our veterans. If Lakers will not be playing these guys, why not find D'League or Euro League players who specialize in treys, we definitely need outside marksmen to free Bynum and Pau inside the post.

Still coming down from the "Did he call glass?" adventure. The Lakers needed a close one and they passed the test.


I wanted to comment on the Andrew Bynum discussion a couple of posts ago. I think Andrew's mental development is about where it should be given his age and his lack of playing experience. He's young, he's big, he's skilled and he wants to put the ball in the hole. That's normal for talented kid like Drew. A player's focus on the other stuff comes with time, if it comes at all.


I am very happy with where Andrew is right now. Over the course of the season and his career, he will have to learn that championships are better goals than all star games. He will have ot dig in more on defense and on the boards. He will have to share with his teammates more.


But as he said, he doesn't get a lot of touches and he shoots pretty efficiently. He should look to score on the block.


It's all a matter of degrees. I hate to hear any player say, basically, I don't see the ball enough so when I get it I shoot. With their talent, the Lakers could have five guys on the floor thinking that way, which would be the end of them.


Both sharing the ball and, well, not sharing the ball are very contagious. Drew might see the ball more if his teammates thought they might see it again. A black hole won't get as many touches. Guy like to think, if I give it to him, he might give it back. Everybody wants to be involved. Everybody wants touches. The ball is a scarce resource. Letting everyone play with it on a trip down the floor keeps everybody happy and involved and motivated.


So I understand Drew's thought process, and still I would like to see him grow and evolve as a player. He is basically unguardable. If he becomes a willing passer as well, it will get him a lot more involvement in the offense.


He sure makes a hell of a number three option in the meantime.


Tom D.

Incredible...

2nd best way to end the evening!!!!!!

I love the title of this post. Hilarious. :-)

I saw the shot at the bar where I work, and since everyone there HATES the Lake Show, I was rubbing it all in their faces. The best thing is that they couldn't talk smack because I was the bartender.

I really thought we were going to give this game away with all the missed opportunities, but I'm glad we came through. Good to have a tough game like this before we hit the road.

just the all star bid? what about an all time great bid? :P

I was kinda thinking they were blowing the game until the miracle fade-away-to-the-left-off-the-glass HORSE shot for the win 3 pointer had me jumping off the couch doing the snoopy dance in the living room. My wife thinks I'm nuts. I love this game! Great to be a Lakers fanatic watching another dynasty in the making and all-timer legend 24/8.

That was amazing. We were up the in the 300s at Staples; that might have been the most excited, loud crowd I've seen at Staples in a long time.

Still watching it on DVR over and over (because then I can skip all the ugly parts of the game ... )

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

we got to see the teeth again last night---after that shot Kobe had his ivories flexed for a good 2 minutes---I can deeg eet mun...

as some others have said, this should be a good film session fodder game--with several items needing to be reiterated over and over:

1) pound the damn ball inside, pound the ball inside and wait for it....pound the ball inside (even if it's just a part of the inside outside game etc.) we have got to play to our strengths that are still not being used near enough

2) shot selection (say no more nudge nudge know what I mean?)

3) will we ever regularly set high screens for Kobe?

4) will we ever regularly use the pick and roll and regularly score 150 points? (it is part of the triangle--just needs to be ran more)

5) pick and roll defense needs work (no sheetrock Sherlock)
picking up fast guards too high (at the half line !!!!) is just asking for penetration (both kinds know what I mean? nudge nudge)

6) more Farmar driving to the hole--when he does that and uses his 3 point shooting sparingly (and hence effectively)he is another dangerous weapon at our disposal

7) more penetration and dishin' ( see #3 and # 6)

8) Artest is getting better and better and needs to be continually utilized (dig his connection with Pau---it seems those two are on the same page a lot of the time etc.

9) number 9 number 9 number 9

"the band begins at ten to six when Mr. K performs his tricks without a sound"

"My wife's from Pearly. Pearly? Pearly? Say no more, Pearly"

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

GO LAKERS !!!

yeah, the thing is, we played like crap. I could tell from the start of the game that this was going to be an off-night. everybody gets them, we had more than a few last year.

But we won on an off-night, to keep a winning streak alive. That's what great teams do. anybody who wants to see this game as 'finally revealing the Lakers feet of clay' is probably just mad that they had a big 'I told you so, i'm always happier to be right than to have the Lakers win, and i haven't been able to talk for eight games now'

next game, we'll make some of the shots we missed, we'll actually pay attention to the little important things like defense, and we'll win by 15 or so again. unless we lose, of course. I'm not going to offend any basketball deities with my hubris by predicting wins until at least the playoffs.

right. that should read 'they had a big 'I told you so, i'm always happier to be right than to have the Lakers win, and i haven't been able to talk for eight games now* [comment all saved up and didn't get to use it]

I think my train of thought lately is being driven by some guy who is texting too much when he should be watching for those other trains of thought at railroad crossings.

anyhoo.


Doug-

It was a joke. Because his All Star candidacy is a given year in and year out, and he's, you know, Kobe Bryant.

dave m-

"Ingrained muscle memory is real... if you look at all the seminal influences, early habits, things that NBA players learn early around the hoop or in athletics in general, it all goes into the mix. Yes, it's good copy but I think there's an element of truth there."

No question there may be an element. I'm sure he learned the physics of it in all sorts of athletic and playground endeavors. I was just having a little fun with a response that, sent my "really, man?" antennae buzzing. Mostly, I think Kobe went with that direction because "I'm so &^@()@)*#^ good at this game, it's insane," which by the way would be closer to the honest answer, isn't really appropriate for the forum. :)

It's a great story, though, and good for the BMX industry, if nothing else.

BK

That lucky win over the Heat who was beaten easily by the Nuggets the previous night only shows that the Lakers is just a good team not an exceptional team not above par over the Celtics, Magic, Cavaliers or the Spurs. Those 7 consecutive wins where they beat the opponenst by more than ten points is just a fluke. The fans as well as the N.B.A. experts were made to believe that this team is just unbeatable until the Heat came to Staples Center. Miami is not even an elite team who was coming on a back to back game against a quality team. Forget about a stroll in the park for their consecutive title, this team is still a long way to being a 72-10 team of Chicago Bulls. I hope they do in order for me to attend again that parade I truly cherish last year.

After sinking into the realization that Miami just might win this, then allowing the full reality of "oh crap - we are going to lose this game" to wash over me, it was AMAZING to see that shot of 24's go in. OMG. It left me screaming, yelling, hooting and hollering and then breathless. Over and over again in the game he made these incredible, memorable shots. And then to almost lose, only to come back and win thanks to Fish's shot and then Kobe's - it was awesome. I am so happy to be back in SoCal and not relegated to the desert where the Suns live. I'm never moving away again. Never.

I LOVE LA! WE LOVE IT!
GO LAKERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Doug-

It was a joke. Because his All Star candidacy is a given year in and year out, and he's, you know, Kobe Bryant.

...
BK

Posted by: Brian Kamenetzky | December 05, 2009 at 10:36 AM

Saavik: Humor. It is a difficult concept. It is not logical.
Kirk: We learn by doing.

Star Trek II - The Wrath of Khan

http://tinyurl.com/yl9tkf3

'The most telling statement was made just outside the Laker locker room, where Phil Jackson stood outside waiting for an electric cart to drive him down the tunnel and to his car.

I told him Kobe’s shot showed why I’d take Bryant over anyone in the final seconds, even the guy who used to wear No. 23. That caused Jackson to raise his eyebrows. Now maybe with six seconds left, enough time to create a good look, I’d go with Jordan. But with only enough time to take a dribble or two, or to catch and fire, I’d go with the best bad shot-maker ever. Because even when it’s a bad shot, Kobe gives you a good shot at winning.

Jackson processed it all, then said two words that resonated as much as Bryant’s three-pointer: “I agree.”'

Rico,
"They don't practice a shot like that in the NBA"

As BK noted, I'll bet Kobe has spent a lot of time practicing that exact shot. That's why he is who he is.

A buzzer beater is a buzzer beater.
.
But the REAL Mr. Clutch, Jerry West, would NEVER have banked it.
.
Heck, for a guy who is so hyped in the clutch it is about time Kobe even hit one---lucky bank or no.

KL, why you gotta do us like this? I thought you ditched the "Beast" part of you name!

From the ESPN comments section on J.A. Adande's piece, a little nugget from a user called KL Beast...

"I've been chatting on the LA Times Laker blog for years and I've been hearning this "kobe is the best" crap forever. Kobe is extremly talented, but b-ball is still a team sport in the end and until Pau arrived, Kobe was biatching about wanting to be traded or badmouthing teammates like Bynum. Sports fans are nuts sometimes. BTW, i'm a 20-year laker fan."

That ain't cool man. It ain't cool. What's the point?

By the way K Bros, I LOVED the Luke Skywalker/wamp rats analogy. It got an audible laugh from me. Way to let your inner nerd shine!

Faith,

I can't completely agree with you on the assessment of our D. It was last night about the same as it has been the previous seven games. The Lakers have become very good at playing above average defense for most of a game, then choosing one quarter to lock-down the opponent and taking then out of the game. Usually the second or third quarter.

But, the Heat just kept making one improbable shot after another. If just one of those broken plays had actually played out in the Lakers favor, there would have been no need for Kobe's and Fish's heroics.

I mean, Wade passing the ball to himself off the bottom of the backboard and off the hands of all four forwards and centers who were in the paint at the time from both squads so he can shoot in a left-handed rainbow?

C'Mon! That's a defensive breakdown?

Ron Artest blocking a 3 point shot, and the Lakers actually rotated to the man left open, but the short shot falling into some Heat dude's lap for a "ohh, look what I found!" dunk?

That's a defensive break-down?

There were about 10 such plays last night. Normally, you think you are playing good D when you keep an apponent below 40%. That means the Heat should have missed about 6 of those 10 possessions. That's 12 points people that the Heat lucked into.

That isn't bad defense folks. That's really is what the Lakers do, and it works most nights. Just not every night.

But, I must admit, Kobe and Fish were correct. They really didn't adjust well to the switch in PnR strategy the Heat used only in the fourth quarter. The Heat took a big chance by intentionally leaving our bigs down low by using only the guards up top, and it almost worked for them. Our guards simply outplayed their guards in the final minutes of the game. Plain and simple.

It's nice to have a Mamba and a Fish in hand when you need them, huh?

--Fearless


AK/BK

Been noticing our blog hosts are slingin' the good questions, all the one liners, (maybe it seems that way cause Jim Hill's around) and the cool respect of principles: Kobe / Phil.

It's more than "those K bros are still around" familiarity. You've both grown in terms of understanding the game and what the organization is trying to get accomplished, which seems to work with Phil and you're two of the few that keep 24 smilin'.

In reflecting over these past years at this gig, you guys feelin' the move up inside the locker room?

"...Those 7 consecutive wins where they beat the opponenst by more than ten points is just a fluke...

Posted by: andredaynah | December 05, 2009 at 10:54 AM"

i have no particular comment on this.

I think the shot and the BMX explanation should somehow make it into one of the puppet commercials.

They need to definitely study the game tape on this one, unlike blow-outs against bad teams or losses when the team just doesn't show up (e.g. Dallas, Denver). Losing a 9-point lead in the 4th quarter against a semi-good team is a warning flag.

Checking the play-by-play, the Lakers had a 7-point lead when Gasol went out. This was followed by 2 dunks by O'Neal after which the Lakers sort of fell apart.

Perhaps if LO hadn't taken Pau out, this game would've been put away in the 4th a lot more easily. It may have been the Lakers were a bit shell-shocked. Nevertheless, Bynum's job is to protect the paint and that wasn't happening at the critical point of the game.

Not to pick on Bynum--Pau also had some defensive breakdowns and LO just wasn't with it last night. Props to Kobe and D-Fish for their defensive effort--no "old and slow" D-Fish last night--but it seemed like the interior defense is what let us down. Jermain O'Neal should not be posterizing this Lakers squad.

The ESPN announcers were terrible--close game throughout and they were yammering about stuff like how the Hawks shouldn't be on ESPN or Artest's interview. They did have a good point about D-Wade though--until the 4th, he seemed to be uninterested in hustling back on defense, particularly after times he thought he got fouled and no call. In contrast, Kobe was all over Wade defensively on seemingly every possession even though he got frustrated with the refs too. Does Wade no longer want to be in Miami? I like him as a player but this was a warning flag.

I agree with Tom D. regarding Bynum. He is very talented, scoring wise he can be unstoppable. But i really feel that the team needs him to play defense and rebound the ball with more intensity. It frustrates me that he sometimes does not go after a missed shot or block out opponents. He is the tallest, longest, strongest man out there. Our Bigs last night gave up too many offensive rebounds it was frustrating to watch. Just imagine if Bynum rebounds like Howard...wow that would be scary and sweet for our team. Just ask coach Jackson what he wants more of Bynum; he wants him to rebound and play defense above anything else. Scoring is nice but as part of the team, he should do more of what is needed from him.
To Zaira A: hey girl, i'm a fellow Muse fan. Uprising is by far my favorite song this year. Muse totally rocks. I saw them live here in Irvine, unbelievable! I'm glad there's another female Laker and Muse fan out there besides me! Go Muse! Go Lakers!

I enjoyed the early part of the game. You could see that it was going to be close and that the Lakers were having a bad shooting night. The Heat were getting more focused and making adjustments as the game went on. I wanted to see how the Lakers handled an off night. They did great. Limited the turnovers, hit their free throws and PJ got everyone involved in the game. The ending was very exciting and I knew when DW missed that first free throw that it was "on". That was the tiny opening that allowed the Lakers a chance to come back and Fish and Kobe took full advantage.

The announcing for this game ...horrid. They were literally talking about college football when Kobe and Dwayne Wade were in a one on one battle on the court! I can't believe the long digressions into sporting world ephemera and amateur psychoanalysis (on ARtest and drinking)that they indulge in DURING A CLOSE GAME. I guess some people enjoy this kind of approach but I want Chick Hearn-style professionalism. I am actually interested in the game itself, not why Gundy can't get a job in BB. They seemed to check out of the game when they Lakers were up by 9 only to have to get back to being serious about calling it after the lead was surrendered. Someday I will be able to click a button on my remote and get the alternate broadcasters of MY CHOICE. Pls make this happen soon as I swear too much with this particular crew yapping away about nothing.

D Fish and Bryant.

D-Fyant.

Fearless, there were definitely possessions where the Heat just shot better over our good defense. But the good defense were few and far in between.

I'll case and point you one. Kobe's on the 3 point line getting washed by the pick, no help comes and both of our bigs back up off Wade when he drives in the paint. The result? 2 points. I'm not saying Wade isn't that good, he's very fast and he's very deceptive but if you replay that exact same play you'll notice that Pau just walked back, and Bynum did nothing. No block, no challenge, not even a legit foul. Granted it's DWade so it would have probably been a foul called regardless but you earn your fouls by making him think about driving. That's what physical teams do. Not dirty mind you but you don't let someone just waltz in and not adjust.

Now ask me when that play I was talking about happened? The 2nd quarter. After going 0-6, Wade got himself back in the game with such a play. Open dunk, open drive with Kobe not getting the rotation. But what is most frustrating is that it didn't just happen with DWade (Chalmers, etc.), it didn't just happen in the 1st half, it happened repeatedly in the latter part of the game. High screen and roll, adjust, mentally adjust and do accordingly. As I recall that's what Boston (I hate you Boston) and Pierce (ugh) did in the finals, and we adjusted how? I love my team, I don't want to see them make the same mistakes. Rotations, rotations, rotations.

Funny, couple of posts mention "laughing at Kobe's shot" and I had the same reaction. I was laughing hysterically, classic.

Mike

Is it just me or does Ron Ron have like zero lift right now? Every drive ends up in a bad double-clutch fling to the hoop. What's up with that? Taking your defender, one-on-one to the hole has nothing to do with "being comfortable in the offense" Sometimes he looks down-right unathletic.

Anyone else agree?

I was at work when the shot went in. I literally screamed at the top of my lungs and grabbed two thugs by their collars who had been rooting against the Lakers and shouted in their ears, "THAT'S WHAT YOU GET! YOU CAN'T BEAT THAT! THAT'S WHY WE'RE THE LAKERS! THAT'S WHAT YOU GET! GO LAKERS!!!!"

They laughed.

One said, "Yeah... them Lakers are pretty good."

I shouted, "THE BEST! THE BEST, MAN! GET ON THE WINNING TEAM! GET ON THE WINNING TEAM! LAKER NATION! GET ON THE BUS OR GET RUN OVER BY IT!"

Yeah, good times.

Derek Fisher and Kobe Bryant are the best.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!

Lakers Today... Lakers Tomorrow... Lakers Forever.

GO LAKERS!!!!

TBone,

"Is it just me or does Ron Ron have like zero lift right now?"

Ron has never been known as a leaper. He's always used his strength and bulk to make space for himself around the rim. In that way, he's kinda like Barkley. Don't expect him to be flying out of the gym like Trevor or Shannon.

Rob D,

"I guess some people enjoy this kind of approach but I want Chick Hearn-style professionalism. I am actually interested in the game itself, not why Gundy can't get a job in BB."

I think we all miss Chick Hearn.

Sadly, I'm only able to watch the games on TNT and ESPN and the broadcasters are awful. The anti-Lakers bias is one thing, but the almost anti-basketball thing is another. What I mean by "anti-basketball bias" is that the commentators seem to have little reverence for the game.

Chick Hearn REVERED the game and it came through in the way that he announced the game.

The commentators at TNT and ESPN seem more interested in talking about their golf game or some restaurant they went to than the actual game itself. A complete self-absorbed lack of passion. It's utterly off-putting.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!

Lakers Today... Lakers Tomorrow... Lakers Forever.

GO LAKERS!!!!

Aside from the defensive lapses, the most frustrating thing to watch last night was our inability to get the ball into the post when Miami was fronting. Our size advantage doesn't mean much if we can't get the ball to our big men, esp. against small, scrappy teams like Miami.

Speaking of Miami, they don't have much talent outside of D-Wade, but they do tend to overachieve. If D-Wade gets some help next summer, as I expect he will, they'll be serious contenders in the East again very soon.

Tom Daniels,

How dare you call Bynum as #3 option on your offense?? Now Laker Tom is going to rip you apart for you not being a Laker fan and for you lack of BB intelligence and all the abuse words. Just warning you in advance :)

Bynum NEVER kicks out the ball at all, once it reaches him, it does not come out until (a) the shot is made or (b) the miss is collected by either LA or opposition.

He should learn that he could get improve his position down low when he kicks out the ball - the defense will momentarily sag, then he can further his position, get the ball and make an easier shot. If he does not give up the ball, its going to be much easier for the opposition's defense.

Also, we are NOT a 3-pt shooting team like Orlando or NY. Out guys take few lesser 3s from what we are taking now. Getting the ball inside might be better.
Another thing: High screens by Miami almost murdered us. Gotta adjust to that soon, otherwise almost every team is going to use that against us...

EJK,


Look at old film, the Round Mound of Rebound could jump, man. He always looked like he got up FASTER than the other guys. MJ went higher and stayed up there longer. But Barkley just EXPLODED.

As for Artest, his leaping ability is about the same as mine. Not a compliment. He does seem to have trouble finishing at the rim. He, Fish and Luke could have an interesting layup contest.


Tom D.

Kobefan,


If LakerTom reads what I posted I think he would agree with it. I love Bynum and I see the upside. I also see where he is today and what he needs to improve (as do you).


LakerTom is a smart and experienced basketball watcher. He sees the potential of Bynum and he gets EXCITED. I love reading his posts. I see all the same things LakerTom sees. My nature is caution. Also I enjoy watching the process of a young player growing. It's what makes players under 25 fun to watch, inspite of all the stupid things they say and do.


LakerTom tends more to enthusiasm. He is lucky. His posts are fun, and I think right on about where Drew is headed. Just as you are right on about where he is TODAY. I think the journey will be fun to watch.


Tom D.

Tom D,
- - - - - - - - -

Thanks for response to Kobefan. I agree completely with your post. I wish I was feeling as good as Kobefan but this damn flu has me laid out like a corpse. I thought Drew’s comments about whether he was in the 3-second area or not was a picture perfect response on how to manage his touches.

Shot hierarchy on a veteran championship team like the Lakers is going to be based on a lot of factors besides seniority, age, position, shooting percentage, and All-Star status. Drew has his head screwed on straight to realize that he is the young stud and he needs to take advantage of the touches he gets to prove he deserves more. By the end of the season, I think we will see him getting more touches.

- - - - - - - - -
Tom

I laughed hysterically at the part before the jump on this article. Love your guys style!

Hmmm....is it just me or are the Bros K, both A & B writing better posts? This was as enjoyable to read as the last 2 mins of the game were to watch. I'm not saying Jim Murray has to worry about his "best damn sports writer in LA Times history" title just yet, but, just sayin'. It's good to be a Laker fan.

GO LAKERS ! ! ! ! !

Tom D.,

No doubt Barkley was an explosive leaper in his earlier days. But with age, he essentially had to use his big behind and bulk around the rim due to his lack of height.

Another Barkley is the real problem right now. What happened to Matt Barkley? He showed so much promise earlier this season. I guess this is what rebuilding feels like, much like what we experienced during the Smush/Kwame years. Well, with SC football out of the way this season, I guess that means more time to focus on the Lakers.

I was Dr. Buss' first p.a. man at the Forum 1979 thru '82 (two NBA titles) and experienced many exciting, interesting and colorful moments in those three years. I would have loved to continue past the three years, but was hired to do 7pm to midnight as a d.j. at Gene Autry's KMPC, 710am and Lawrence Tanter took over at the position. I've just completed 5 or 6 blogs recalling those memories. Please check 'em out at: larontheair.blogspot.com Many thanks in advance. I love both of you guy's work! Regards, Larry McKay

Jon K.

"Chick Hearn REVERED the game and it came through in the way that he announced the game. "

verily Sir -- you said it all brother...

GO LAKERS !!!

I truly feel sorry for Farmar. The guy did just about everything right in this game and yet Phil yanked him out for good pretty much the entire second half. I suppose it's loyalty or rather loyalty-to-the-Triangle that made Phil keeps playing Fish in spite of diminishing returns when Farmar was available and clearly superior.

You see, Farmar excelled at pushing the pace and penetration, something that just can't be tolerated because Phil do not ever wanted his Triangle to be upstaged.

In spite of his late-game trey Fish was absolutely HORRIBLE. I love the guy and appreciate his past contributions but puuulllleaze, you ARE over-the-hill Fish. He missed a layup in the first quarter. He took and missed on awful shots before his clutch trey. On Defense Fish was more than HORRIBLE, he allowed a no-name PG, Mario Chalmers to take open shots at will after keep losing sight of him. In the fourth, Fish did a HORRIBLE job helping out Kobe on the high screens in defense of Wade.

If Fish had not been so HORRIBLE on both sides of the ball through 3 quarters, the Lakers wouldn't have needed his late trey. No thanks on that!

AK/BK,

I think that Melo is getting waaaaaaay too much love as an early MVP candidate. I believe that he's one of the candidates, but to many analysts and writers are just outlandish in their praise for Melo. Sure he's improved his overall game, but if the Nuggets end of with the second seed or worse behind the Lakers, it should definitely go to the best player on the best team which would be Kobe Bryant.

I know many will argue that Kobe has a better supporting cast, but Melo has a pretty good cast around him as well. Should the Lakers end up with the best record in the league(Cavs had it last year), Kobe should be the MVP hands down.

AWW YA got my tix for Fridays game. Driving 6 1/2 hours to the game, hoping the blow out doesn't happen till about the 10th minute of the fourth.

Posted by: Magia32 | December 02, 2009 at 08:28 AM

Just got back from L.A, WOW!!!
The shot happened right in front of my face.
I couldn't of asked for a better ending for my first time to Staples.

and whats up with Klo playing musical chairs? Seemed like she kept switching seats in different areas, finally leaving when Odom got ejected ( who btw sux more in person than he does on t.v, throw Fisher in there also.)

Psycorp - if Fish is so completely horrible as you say, why do you figure Phil keeps starting him? No sarcasm intended here, just wondering.

Kings played the Suns tough before succumbing at the end. The Suns starters had to play extended minutes so will be tired, but won't come into Staples PO'ed about dropping a game. If the Lakers play them tough and physical, they'll fold by the half.

The Suns, incidentally, looked horrible tonight. The Kings outrebounded them and got a lot of ridiculously easy layups. While the Suns also had uncharacteristically poor shooting tonight, if the pint-size Kings can get rebounds and layups against the Suns, there's no excuse for the Lakers not to destroy them in both categories.

LakerTom, sad to know you're still down. Did you get to take Tamiflu?

I took, and it did help.

No one should say anything about Bynum being injury prone, Greg Oden just went down AGAIN, looks like he will be out for most if not all of the season, now THAT GUY is injury prone.

Terrible news about Oden. Blazers may be a rival, but I'm sure Laker fans can sympathize.

Let's all pray that Bynum gets through this season without any significant injuries.

I remember watching ESPN360 come back from half-time, with a camera and mic on Quentin Richardson telling Dwyane Wade to "put a hand on that motherf*'s face". And to be able to watch the last .45 seconds of that game and see Wade put his hand in Kobe's face and Kobe making that shot. That's a sweet victory in light of Q-Rich's stupid comment. THANK YOU KOBE!

Bad news about Oden. That really sucks.


Wes

LakerTom,

You said this to Tom D. : Drew has his head screwed on straight to realize that he is the young stud and he needs to take advantage of the touches he gets to prove he deserves more. By the end of the season, I think we will see him getting more touches.

my response: With respect, I disagree. The man with 10 rings has indicated
that he needs to pass more. What I saw was the Lakers giving up rebounds
that they shouldn't. Given the poor shooting of the Lakers, if Bynum
focused on offensive rebounds ... He could easily get a similar number of
points. You referred to him as the "young stud". Oddly enough, Phil
agrees that he's young, but doesn't seem to agree that he is a stud. Taking
advantage of the touches will not prove that he deserves it more. He does
not deserve the ball more than Pau or Kobe. Taking advantage of the
touches and rushing/forcing shots will only screw things up.

To put this in perspective: Bynum has 4 - 5 years to hit his stride/become
great. Pau, Kobe & Artest are already great in a number of areas. Taking
touches away from great players, so that he can become an all star seems
wrong/incorrect. Taking touches away from great players because he has
a better shot is completely valid and I support it.

You raise an interesting point. If he gets more touches, who will he get those
touches at the expense of? Should Pau the european champion and all star
get less touches so that Bynum can become an all star? Are you arguing that
Bynum is better than Pau? Maybe you think that Bynum should get more
touches than Kobe? Of course, it's better that the kid get more touches than
the perennial all-star on offense and defense.

Here's a separate question for you. If Bynum becomes known as a big man
who won't pass, because he's too busy trying to make the all star team, will
the other Lakers pass him the ball?

I would suggest this: While Bynum is his own man, he & the Lakers would
be best served if he were patient and learned the little things now vs. working
on the "flashy" things. The basics always work. Offensive rebounds. Defensive
rebounds. Boxing out and passing will help the Lakers win a championship
more than his focusing on scoring points. He's going to get his points. He's
going to get his opportunity to score. If we aren't getting rebounds we might
lose. That would suck!

Scott,

Sad news for Oden. There seems to be an injury bug that plagues big men and their knees. Nonethless, the Blazers are not a rival. Even though they and their fans think they they are rivals, they are not a rival.

I've been saying this for some time now. Many NBA teams like to flatter themselves by calling the Lakers rivals. They play much better when they are against the Lakers especially when the Lakers are visiting their town. Other teams and their fans mark their calendars for the Lakers.

The only rival I see is the San Antonio Spurs.

@ hyacint :) :) :) Way to go girl :) All of your taste looks pretty perfect to me in sport and music ;) (music is like the other side of me: I own a total of 642 albums and counting ;) I'm a total music freak, with wide range. To say... tomorrow in Italy is La Scala theather première and I get there, to catch Bizet's "Carmen". Unless it isn't death metal or stupid emo stuff, pretty much all the rest of music, high pop included is at my liking.)

It was such a magnificent day yesterday, pacing quietly after our victory (still I keep listing what was not so pleasant about the game as a reality we have to face), counting in as well Milan one against Sampdoria and Inter loss against Juventus (no bother yourself... that's JUSTsoccer ;)) and looking forward to today's game.

Except for I risk to not be able to follow it straight. Just got to re-establish my NBA pass and they said I might get to see the game AFTER. Which would mean for me no chat (to not get the result spoiled). That would really be bad. I love to follow the game along you all. *sigh*.

I hope that we keep the Heat's scare as a valuable experience and what God Kobe said about how it was needed a close game as the past one to strenghten up the feeling of winning hunger in the locker room confirms me fully in my vision.
A team like ours needs to be shaken in order to evaluate what makes us the truly best.
Cos we are the truly best.
It's just a long way to chisele all of our weapons efficiency.
I laugh out laud at all trolls around, all these Melo's enthusiasts (don't get me wrong: I really would rank higher Melo than Lebron ANY DAY) and all those claiming we have a poorer team than we think.

Contrariwise.

We are even better than we must wish ourselves to be.
But to flourish at our best we need scares as the one against Miami.
So I hope tonight is another testing game.
I'm sure it will cos against us everybody just plays at their 150%. (another reason for we can't make any comparison between the way, say, Miami was defeated by Nuggets and the way we had to work over to get rid of them. Efforts are so different. Always).

Makin us in the end closer to our 100%. Which will be untakeable for everybody else around, sorry ;)

We are currently not even at our 60%, and the only thing that can stop us are injuries.

Have alla fabulous sunday and I hope to catch you tonight, is my NBA pass won't act as a bitch. ;)

I have hammed Oden of late,but i feel really bad for the guy...Terrible in fact...

Last night i witnessed the worst sportsmanship in my life...

I will post it tomorrow....

Great win, but I wonder why the Lakers/DFish never adjusted to the high
screen on Kobe, allowing DWade to run down the lane to his left?
Over and over again DFish just ran the wrong way?

Hitting that shot is a joke. During a match? Good joke. Winning a close match?... that's definitely Kobe. I've been rooting for this team since Magic. Kobe's greater. Greater than MJ? Let's wait until he calls it a career...a lot of great things have to happen yet.

Greetings from Spain for the whole of lakernation. It's spread all over the world, as you see....

Faith,

You mentioned the broken-down defensive plays you saw against the Heat, as we all did. However, I contend to you and everyone else that wants to chalk up this close win to a lack of defensive intensity to carefully look at the other games the Lakers have played this season. The Lakers are doing something remarkable. They are mentally beating teams. What we used to call "psyching them out".

It is like when I used to run track in High School and at UCLA. I had a reputation as a winner, not neccesarily as the fastest guy. My senior year, I went undefeated, often beating guys who have run faster then me. On race day, I had a "game face" that was deevestating. Not quite mean as Kobe's, but just business. Robotic. And I had a 40-minute warm-up routine that was more vigourous that most guys whole work-out routine. When they saw me do that, before every event (I would run four), it messed with their minds. Everyone else at track meets goes to great lengths to conserve energy and sleep, etc. between races.

Seeing my routine (which I would often do way out in the open) would demoralize or frighten (or both) my competitors before they stepped on the track. The comments I got back later were very telling and illuminating. I terrified my competition.

My routine also kept me very healthy so that I had only 2 major injuries in my career, and one was due to an accident.

How do I know that the Lakers are also deploying that technique? Because they somehow have figured out how to defend against the free throw. Have you noticed that teams' FT percentage also drops when they play the Lakers? The Lakers are still leaving 3pt shooters wide open several times a game, every game, every night. But, after the Lakers have blitzkrieg-ed them for a quarter or two, most teams can't recover enough so that it even matters anymore. Those open shots just don't fall. Like I said before, the Lakers play above average D most of a game, and use a combination of the Triangle and great D for about maybe 10-20 minutes to put these teams away.

It works like a charm against most teams. Miami is a Championship quality team and frachise. Those mind games just aren't going to work on Miami. We really have to understand that. This games was going to be close no matter what we did. Miami already has a counter for everything we do. And, as we saw, they have some tricks of their own. Plus, that guy they have over there can apparently coach.

Oh, and they have this dude who once won the Championship just about all by himself, in a series that they were about to loose, remember him? Plus, some other dude who has rings already from two other teams.

The game actually came down to what should have been predicted.

1) Maybe the second greates closer playing the game -- Wade (sorry LBJ) -- missed a FT that could have sealed the deal.

2) The often meligned veteran, and maybe the best squared-up clutch shooter in the game, squared-up and calmly sank a clutch three pointer like it was just a matter of course.

3) The best "bad shot" shooter in the league (ever?) was left only with a bad shot. Which he sank.

Game over.

--Fearless

PS: my point is that it isn't always prudent to judge a strategy based in its results on a game-to-game basis. No human devised strategy is going to work every time. Even the very best strategies. Because, all strategies are actually plays against the averages -- which the Lakers are very far ahead. Which means, there are going to be nights that no matter how well you employ the strategy in question, nothing will go right. You are going to look like a doof. What teams need to do then is have a good plan B, plan C and plan D.

http://tinyurl.com/ycr6lla

from www.nba.com

This highlights why I am not a fan of fantasy basketball. It's all about the
numbers and not about winning. Which I find odd.

I do like the fact that they're wrong about the Lakers.

snippet: Kobe Bryant: The Finals MVP remains a top-five fantasy option despite declining numbers in every key offensive (points, rebounds, assists) and defensive (steals, blocks) category, as well as minutes.

Oh, yeah. those rebounds, assists & steals are dropping like a rock. :)

During the last minute of the Mia Laker game I turned to my wife and lectured her on how back in the 60's and early 70's this was a sure win for the Lakers. For years I've been laughed at for the player that most closely resembled "Michael" was a Laker not named "Kobe". Jerry West is that Laker and not because they played the game the same physically but because of the way they impacted games in clutch situations. Not too many fans today remember or saw Jerry West play but I do.It took two tremendous shots by Fish and Kobe for the Lakers to win....something Jerry West would have accomplished himself!!!The nickname Chick Hearn gave him, "Mr Clutch", fit him completely and wasn't given without repeated successes in tight games down the stretch in the early 60's.As I watched "Michael's "career unfold I constantly was reminded of West's legacy as Jordan repeatably won close games down the stretch with incredible shots and effort. Now Kobe does hit clutch shots more than most but hasn't quite hit that " Mr Clutch" status yet......I'm sure by the end of his career though my opinion will change...hopefully.

I feel really bad about Oden. Anyone see the pic on cnnsi.com? He has two giant caverns where his kneecap once was. Not a pretty sight, but one that we've seen before with Shawn Livingston. I don't know if it's the same injury, but the damage looks similar to me.


I feel like God's great injury-possession arrow pointed toward Oden this time instead of Bynum. But Bynum's up next. I'm hoping for a pulled follicle.


Wes

A belated thank you for the article on Bynum a couple of days ago. I am behind on my reading assignments and trying to catch up.

man, really feel sorry for Greg Oden. What I don't understand is why he wasn't wearing any kind of knee brace? Just watching him before he even jumped you could tell he's knock-kneed or... something... his legs just don't look good when he's healthy. My god, he broke his kneecap JUMPING with no contact! How in the world does that happen? Was the kneecap so loose that when he started his jump it locked in too low or... what? Shouldn't the Portland medical staff have developed some kind of brace to keep everything in place? How could they NOT have noticed how awkwardly he was moving when "healthy"?

I totally agree with Faith, the reason why the Heat got competitive because of Lakers defensive flaws. Our bigs have the height advantage but don't have the basketball smartness in defending the post like box out and confronting D'Wade. When Wade goes for a lay up, there are three players concentrated on blocking him and leaves Haslem or O'Neil unguarded, I think Drew can block those kind of shots but did not do that job.

Secondly, on offense Lakers are always in hurry for dunk shots, alley hoops or going in the middle. Their perimeter shooting is none existent. Basketball prowess needs a lot of timing, it is not just height or brawl but more on smartness when to use force or when to utilize grace. Bynum is a talented player but he's one dimensional there inthe post, he get caught by screens and box outs and finally slow to react that he get caught by the referees. Gasol is the smart player but we all know, he's Ga-soft out there and being pushed around, slow to react in retaliation. Why not learn from Artest? That is the type of D our bigs should inherit. Another reason for close game is Odom, he is lackadaisical as it can be, can't predict how his Odometer on every game, sometimes good and sometimes.

Farmar had a good game but Fisher's D is more important in the last quarter. His slowness is compensated by his shrewdness in fighting for R or going for those last second shots. He could have been a goat if he missed that last trey but not bothered by criticisms or polls in this blog. Just go for it and make it happen. Whether Fisher, Brown or Farmar, I don't think any of them is the Lakers PG of the future in 2010, 11 and 12. They should find a better PG who can be consistent and able to keep up with the speed, shooting and good in D, not afraid of Wade, Nash, Rose, Beastly or Brandon Roy. Lakers should always have upper hand in talents in any position, why is it that they always need Kobe to bail them out and win against quality teams?

never,

"The only rival I see is the San Antonio Spurs."

I KIND OF agree with you.

The only rival I RESPECT are the San Antonio Spurs. Every other rival either annoys me or fills me with hatred, particularly the Boston Celtics.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!!

Lakers Today... Lakers Tomorrow... Lakers Forever.

GO LAKERS!!!!


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