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Caught in the Web: Lakers preparing for five-game trip

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Practice reports

--The Times' Mike Bresnahan takes a look at the teams the Lakers will face on their five-game trip.

--The Orange County Register's Janis Carr observes Lamar Odom's insistence to fight through his left- shoulder injury and not make excuses about it.

--The Riverside Press-Enterprise's David Lassen documents how the Lakers plan to increase their intensity in the remaining 12 games of the regular season.

--Though Lakers Coach Phil Jackson says the five-game trip won't "make or break" the team's chances of holding the top spot in the West, the Daily News' Elliott Teaford reports that Jackson still expects the team to win all five games. The story also mentions forward Luke Walton is hoping to fully recover from a pinched nerve in his lower back in time for the postseason.

--Lakers.com's Mike Trudell breaks down some numbers for Wednesday night's game between the Lakers and San Antonio Spurs.

--The Spurs have won 11 of their last 15 games, and the San Antonio Express-News' Mike Monroe deems their matchup with the Lakers will ultimately tell if the team is truly in sync.

More Lakers links

--Still debating whether Trevor Ariza or Ron Artest is a better fit for the Lakers? Well, Artest told The Times' Bill Plaschke, "he's a better player than me," though Plaschke noted his comment "contained some annoyed sarcasm."

--Former Times writer Steve Springer has a revealing Q&A with Lakers owner Jerry Buss.

--The Register's Carr highlights Kobe Bryant's popularity in Turkey.

--ESPN Los Angeles' Brian Kamenetzky provides 20 reasons why Lakers fans should be happy with the season thus far.

--Silver Screen and Roll's Dexter Fishmore previews the Lakers' upcoming trip and further analyzes how San Antonio, Portland and Oklahoma City could be first-round opponents.

--48 Minutes of Hell breaks down Kobe versus LeBron

--Fox Sports' Kelani Simpson explains why a Kobe-LeBron matchup in the Finals must happen.

Tweet of the Day: "Mark Jackson sitting behind me on LAX-SA flight. Safe assumption game on ESPN and he's not going to San Antonio on holiday?" -- KevinDing (Orange County Register Lakers reporter Kevin Ding).

Photo Caption Comment of the Day: "Kobe showing the team what he meant by "use your head." -- puddle

Reader Comment of the Day: "Sometimes, you just have to sit back and smile because Phil comes off just like a dog trainer, doling out carrots or sticks as needed and providing a consistent and nurturing environment for the pups to grow, develop, and bond as a team. While he likes to win every game, Phil’s genius lies in his unique ability to build team play and chemistry where every player knows and executes his role perfectly. This is the road trip when I expect this team to start to display their championship mettle." -- Tom

-- Mark Medina

Follow the L.A. Times Lakers blog on Twitter. E-mail the Lakers blog at mgmedin@gmail.com.

Photo: Kobe Bryant takes aim between the Spurs' Keith Bogans and Tony Parker. Credit: Brendan Maloney / US Presswire

 
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Hey guys,

My amazing power of posting to cause a new thread to appear has happened again!

Check out my witty, intelligent, fun-loving comments at the bottom of the last thread....


Strictly for your viewing pleasure.

- Tonight's game is HUGE. Parker may be out, but Hill is a solid PG, and Manu is playing like Manu again. I think the Lakers will meet Phil's expectations of a 5-0 road trip. It's time to forget about the team's struggles up to this point because the road to the playoffs starts TONIGHT. Phil knows it, and the team knows it.

- The team is going to need a healthy Bynum for the playoffs, but Lamar's recovery from his shoulder injury is MUCH more important to their title hopes than Bynum's recovery.

- KBBlitz/Yellofever, Correct me if I'm wrong, but my recollection is that Blitz was arguing for Luke to start over Ariza all year long. Most of Blitz's.... um "discussions" with Hobbit revolved around Blitz's assertion that the starting unit is better with Luke over Ariza. And I don't mean to pick on you Blitz, but Bird greater than Magic??? Paleeeeeeze. I don't care how awful Magic's TV commercials are, I order you to repent for your Laker blasphemy!

FELLOW LAKERHOLICS…
I thought some of the newbies might enjoy this post I did a while ago about Lakerholics, especially as we all seem to be struggling with these last few weeks before the playoffs. So without further adieu, here it is:
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LAKERHOLICS…
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The thing about being a junkie is that you’re always thinking about your next fix, making sure your supply is uninterrupted. For basketball junkies, the playoffs are a mixed bag. On the one hand, it’s great that the second season has started and that the games count. On the other hand, your junkie instincts quickly recognize that the season is soon going to come to an end and you will have to go cold turkey until next October with no basketball. So while every game and series grows in importance so does your junkie anxiety about the coming off-season but don’t let that anxiety suck the joy out of these last dozen Laker wins. Relish and savor every one, Lakers fans, because soon it will be all over. And we will have the only thing that makes it easy to go cold turkey – another NBA championship.
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We all have our addictions for better or worse but think about how lucky we are to be Lakerholics rather than addicts of another team. I mean if you have to have a jones, why not have a first class one with some hopes of redelivering that initial shot of ecstasy that was what hooked you in the first place? Why not keep shooting up hoping to recreate the great thrill of the Wilt and Jerry championship or the Magic and Kareem Showtime Lakers? Any fool knows your chances of repeating nirvana are a better than those of a Clipperholic, so why not take the plunge. Let the confidence of our storied history and the tantalizing prospect of our current team ignite your endorphins and free your mind of blown leads and lost opportunities. As Mamba reminds us, we are the Freaking LA Lakers.
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Lakerholics are like alcoholics drinking Dom Pérignon, potheads smoking homegrown, or cokeheads snorting pharmaceutical while the rest of basketball’s addicts basically sniff paint thinner, suck up cough syrup, and down cheap beer. I mean, the thing about an addiction is how it drives to keep coming back trying to recreate whatever hooked you. So how do you become addicted to the Clippers or the Cavaliers or the Suns, teams that have never won anything, never tasted the sweet pleasure of winning it all. The answer is the same as to why people would ever seriously sniff paint thinner, suck in cough syrup, or drink cheap beer. Basically, they don’t know any better. They’re lost in their ignorance, blissfully unaware that their addiction has doomed them to a life of mediocrity.
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You may not be what you drive, what you eat, or what you wear but the team that you choose as your jones still says a lot about you, especially if the choice is not demographic or inherited. We all know a lot of Yankee and Cowboy fans who are bandwagon winners. And Raiders and Celtics fans who think they are outlaws and tough guys against the world. And I suppose even a few Clippers fans like Billy Crystal who take pleasure and relish in rooting for the underdog, although the term Yankees-Clippers fan is surely an oxymoron. But Lakers fans are special. We want basketball that is played and choreographed like a ballet and not played like a football game or rugby scrum. We want teams that win by playing the game the way it should be and by sharing the ball and playing as one team. That’s why God is a Lakers fan and why being a Lakerholic is the best addiction of all.
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Tom

Plaschke said that Ariza is a better fit? Well, that bodes well for us in the playoffs. I can't think of another columnist who gets things as consistently wrong as Plaschke. He certainly has a tendency to hyperventilate and overreact to the events of the day. He writes in a poetic style, but unfortunately, his columns are more about style than substance.

LakerTom -


I have to say it - OUT-FREAKING-STANDING!!! Whenever I read that, I again realize how lucky I am to be a Lakerholic. And how proud.


GO LAKERS!!!!

Nothing but another title will suffice.

"And I don't mean to pick on you Blitz, but Bird greater than Magic???"

There is a legit argument to that. Personally I have Magic over Bird but you can argue that Bird was the better player (Magic accomplished much more). You could argue that Bird turned a bad Boston team immediately while Magic joined a 47-35 team that had a very good Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. I'm not saying Bird is by far better than Magic, Earvin accomplished more. Do you see though any other white unathletic player thoroughly dominate the game against more athletic players? Not even Dirk can speak of that. It's splitting hairs between the two and frankly Magic wins out because he accomplished more. If Larry's back didn't give out who knows just as much if Magic made better decisions off the court that could have extended his career. And it wasn't just me who argued Luke was a better starting of the Lakers (Ariza was by far the superior player but Luke could involve the big men more) LTLF also did as well. Sure Ariza (in the playoffs) proved himself to be a quality starter but you two forget Ariza was struggling by March off the bench that many people were questioning him as well not to mention how he failed to foul Iggy even though both the coaches and his teammates told him he had a foul to give. I *never* called Luke a premier SF it's that he was perfect fit for an offense that requires lots of ball movement (even Hobbit agreed that he was a good fit even though he liked Ariza). And yes yellofever the first post you gave about Ron joining LA was not a positive one though it eventually did turn more in favor of Ron.

"Lakerholics are like alcoholics drinking Dom Pérignon, potheads smoking homegrown, or cokeheads snorting pharmaceutical while the rest of basketball’s addicts basically sniff paint thinner, suck up cough syrup, and down cheap beer. I mean, the thing about an addiction is how it drives to keep coming back trying to recreate whatever hooked you. So how do you become addicted to the Clippers or the Cavaliers or the Suns, teams that have never won anything, never tasted the sweet pleasure of winning it all. The answer is the same as to why people would ever seriously sniff paint thinner, suck in cough syrup, or drink cheap beer. Basically, they don’t know any better. They’re lost in their ignorance, blissfully unaware that their addiction has doomed them to a life of mediocrity."
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Tom


Posted by: LakerTom | March 24, 2010 at 01:51 PM

GENIUS!!!!

PURE (AND GOOD) GENIUS!!!

Cheers!

I wanna another Laker...gimmmmmmeeeeee anover Laker, pleash! Whaddaya mean I caint have any more of my Lakersh?

Jeshus...whataguygottado? Huh? Whattaguygottado? Round here, they alwaysh give me mah Lakersh...whatayou gottaginst me anyway, pal?


Lakerholics forvever!

I won the photo caption contest?

I'll be sure to have this legendary accomplishment engraved on my tombstone!

LakerTom,

Loved that post man. That was awsome. I hate the offseason, 4 months without lakers is hell. The best part is that it's only 4 meaning we played into June. I love being a lakerholic!!!

OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOH
WEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE
@LAKERTOM
OUTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT
FREAKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKIN
STANDIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIING!!!
KUDOS LAKER TOM. I'M A LAKERHOLIC AND I DON'T EVER WANT TO BE CURED!!!
MAMBA24(LARRY)

To both LTs (my esteemed bloggers Lakertruth and Lakertom)

Lakertom
Appreciate the kind words.. I don't think I'm goin anywhere for a while... Been almost a year and a half since I've been lurkin around here and its like a freakin mental home.. Maybe that's why I keep comin back cause... Anytime I wanna getaway from reality I'll just log into this fictional world full of wacky zany and loony characters.

As for blitz.. "he aint got nuthin on me!!"... His problem is he's got his head so far up his ass anytime anyone dares question his self proclaimed knowledge of the game he goes completely ballistic.. Dude DUDE I mean take a chill pill bro.. I aint tryin to knock on his little rep hes worked so hard to build here.. That man is like super sensitivo...LOL.. And hobbit I wouldn't associate him with blitz.. He's a lot more reasonable levelheaded and actually backs his arguments with facts

Lakertruth
Thanks for speakin out.. justice has been served! At least temporarily.. I see kbblitz is already backpedaling fumbling on his words and now evidently tryin to bring LTLF and hobbit down with him.. In the words of our mamba.. OH THE HUMANITY!!!

Peace! Go Lakers!

My wife always tells people that she had to become a lakerfan for me to marry her LOL!

@JAMIE SWEET, ROFL!!! HAHA, YOU OUGHT TO JUST QUIT!!! HAHAHAHAHA
MAMBA(LARRY)

JUSTAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!
YES JUSTA IT APPEARS WE ARE ALL LOST IN THAT DEVILISH, ADDICTION CALLED LAKERHOLISM!!!

My wife always tells people that she had to become a lakerfan for me to marry her LOL!
Posted by: Troy B | March 24, 2010 at 03:50 PM

LOL, similar story, but different. My wife knew nothing about basketball when we met. Now, she will wake me up in the 4th quarter of a Lakers game that SHE is watching at 1 AM after I have fallen asleep. She will say c'mon, you gotta see this, Kobe did this or the Lakers did that. The next day she will talk about the game, like, oh man, you really missed this or that.

She saw her first live game a week or two ago when we saw the Lakers play the Magic on Orlando and her main observation was, wow, the court is so much smaller in person than it seems on TV., Funny, but she has become quite the fan.

LOL ART, that's good stuff. We've both brought in new members to the lakers family. I'm still waiting to see my first live game! We r gonna save some money for a game next year.

I actually got her into bball in the firstplace cause I was playing for my hs when we met. She still didn't become a lakerfan for a few years though

yellofever:

You wrote: "Dude DUDE I mean take a chill pill bro..

my response: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5j2F4VcBmeo

That you being Jack there? :)

It's fine to be wrong like when you jumped off both Sasha's and Bynum's boat after screaming out your lungs out for both of them (It was actually in pre-season when you were all hots over the former MASHEEN than last year I abandoned him after his choke job in Orlando in December of 08). Then you want to declare your love for Kobe and just screaming out your lungs and yet you tell me to calm down after I smashed apart Todd/jimjoyce/Staples 24 in Kobe's defense. I suggest you try to think with thy head instead of thy emotions :) or thy Mark Jackson.

http://i.ytimg.com/vi/ofbYEFJFtmw/0.jpg

Have a nice day :)


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