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Lakers' 109-92 loss to Atlanta Hawks concludes a disappointing five-game trip

The Lakers were only minutes away from an eventual 109-92 loss Wednesday to the Atlanta Hawks, and Lakers guard Kobe Bryant sat on the bench with a towel draped over his shoulders.

He didn't let out an angry scowl. He didn't punch a chair. Bryant saved those reactions minutes before the Lakers' loss two days earlier at New Orleans. Instead, Bryant stared straight ahead with a faceless expression.

Bryant, in a stoic look, appeared to be reflecting about something. Perhaps it was about how little help he received from his supporting cast after scoring a team-leading 28 points on 12 of 21 shooting. Perhaps he wondered why the bench allowed Atlalnta's reserves to outscore them 44-22. Or perhaps he soaked in the team's entire 2-3 trip, and what it might mean for the Lakers with only seven games remaining in the regular season.

After initially assessing this trip would determine whether the Lakers would end with the West's top seed, Coach Phil Jackson changed his perspective after noticing the team's comfortable standing over Denver, Dallas and Utah. Despite the team's second consecutive loss, the Lakers (54-21) hold a 4-1/2-game lead over the Mavericks (49-25), a five-game advantage over the Jazz (49-26) and the Suns (49-26) as well as a six-game cushion over the Nuggets (48-27). But, really, with the Lakers far from Cleveland (59-16) for the league's best record, the last stretch of the regular season has never been about wins and losses. Sure, Jackson challenged the team to reach 60 wins, but that was merely a carrot he was dangling so the Lakers would at least be interested in playing before the playoffs. It's been about improving the team's play, something that was only on display in the Lakers' first game of the trip in a win over San Antonio.

The Lakers latest' performance didn't indicate a lack of urgency, a phrase I've been tired of typing and Lakers fans have been tired of reading. The Lakers actually came out with a full effort this time around, hoping to end their five-game trip on as good a note as a 3-2 record can bring. Instead, the Lakers' ineffectiveness resulted in discouragement, thus concluding the trip with a 2-3 mark, their worst loss at Atlanta since suffering a 106-89 defeat Dec. 28, 1974 and a sputtering 22-15 road record this season.

 Atlanta simply outplayed the Lakers, what with the Hawks faring better against them in points in the paint (44-26), in field-goal percentage (54.2% to the Lakers' clip of 45.8%) and in team balance (Atlanta had seven players crack double figures while the Lakers had four in Bryant, Pau Gasol (16 points), Jordan Farmar (14) and Ron Artest (15 points).

Don't let the double figure lines fool you. The Lakers lacked an identity with Andrew Bynum missing his sixth consecutive game because of a strained left Achilles' tendon, the team settling for too many outside shots and the defense leaving itself vulnerable inside (Atlanta outscored the Lakers, 19-4, in second-chance points) and outside (the Hawks went nine of 22 from three-point range). 

And then of course there was the news that Sasha Vujacic's recent argument with assistant Brian Shaw during the Oklahoma City game will cut his time in the bench's rotation. That's a severe blow to a unit that had already been decimated with inconsistency. With Lakers guard Derek Fisher going only one of six for 26 minutes, Farmar helped with 16 points on a five of nine clip in 26 minutes, but his lapses in the second quarter was more representative of the team's poor bench play, which otherwise combined for only six points on two of eight shooting.

The Lakers played with more effort against Atlanta (48-26), which holds a one-game lead for third place in the East over Boston (47-27), but the team's lack of urgency in previous games caught up to them. For too long the team had played with that mentality, which prevented them from at least improving the assorted problems the Lakers have faced all season, such as poor pick-and-roll defense, inconsistent bench play and offensive continuity. While those problems won't make-or-break a championship run and isn't something that realistically can be corrected in a short period of time, those areas combined with poor effort doesn't help the team's cause. 

The biggest misnomer regarding the sorry excuses for the Lakers not playing hard had been that the team has just been waiting to turn it around once the postseason begins, sort of like how it did in last season's playoffs. Though the Lakers certainly sharpened their play after Game 4 of the Western Conference Finals en route to an NBA title, that didn't mean their lackadaisical play beforehand was a sound strategy. It simply showed that the Lakers finally fixed their problems before it was too late.

That concept should also apply to this year's team. No win or loss in the regular season is going to determine how the Lakers perform in the playoffs. But to think that the Lakers can suddenly flip a switch and solve their problems when the postseason begins is a huge mistake. After all, the Lakers played with a full effort against Atlanta. But with the team lacking that urgency in previous games, it allowed the team's inconsistent chemistry issues to still persist.  

--Mark Medina

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

 
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I just read the box score.

From the statistics alone, it looks like we're not focused.

I feel like right now we are Mason "The Line" Dixon in the film "Rocky Balboa" and we need someone to test us to really be our best. It's crazy thinking, but I think that's what the case is. We really need someone to put our feet in the fire.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!

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

GO LAKERS!!!!

Jon K- 'not focused?' "DRINK!"

OH KOBE YOUUUU, YOU GOT WHAT YOU NEEED, WHAT YOU SAY YOU NEED TO WIN, WHAT YOU SAY YOU NEED TO WIN...."

WHY THIS LOSS DOESN’T MATTER
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Since there seems to be nothing but dismay and doomsday predictions, I thought it might be a good time to examine the reasons why this loss and truthfully the rest of the regular season don’t matter. I’m not at all saying that the team’s recent play isn’t reason for worry and concern. We won’t really know the answer to that question until after the season ends, hopefully for us sometime in late June. What we do have, however, are several sound reasons why this loss doesn’t really matter:
~
(1) THE GAMES DON’T COUNT. The Lakers know for sure they’re going to end up the season with home court advantage in the West but are not going to catch the Cavs for best record in the East. Win or lose really makes no difference, provided that the Lakers are as able as they think they are in turning on the switch. As another fellow blogger aptly noted, these are preseason games for the playoffs.
~
(2) THE OPPONENTS DON’T MATTER. Not only do the games not matter but neither have the opponents inspired. The Lakers are notorious for playing down to the level of their opponents and it was obvious that the team just did not view the Thunder, Hornets, or Hawks as serious challengers. Not only do they need the games to count, but they also need an opponent whom they respect.
~
(3) BYNUM CHANGES EVERYTHING. In a way, these recent tough losses have given a lot of Lakers fans a chance to rethink their opinion and appreciation for what Andrew brings to the table and how important he is to balance the essentially finesse games of Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom. When the playoffs begin, Bynum and Artest will transform the character of the team from finesse to power.
~
(4) SIZE MATTERS IN PLAYOFFS. This Lakers team, especially with the “trade” of Ariza for Artest, is designed for the playoffs, when everything slows down and intensifies, when full court turns into half court, and when tall ball smothers and eliminates small ball. While teams will still try to outrun the Lakers in the playoffs, they’ll find the tempo and pace of the game dramatically slower.

(5) GOTTA WIN 4 IN PLAYOFFS. There is a big difference between regular season games on the road where the home team and its fans are totally amped for what is often their biggest game of the year versus slogging it out in 7-game series where better teams excel and weaker teams are exposed. You HAVE to be lucky to win the NCAA crown. You HAVE to be best to win the NBA championship.
~
(6) HOME COURT ADVANTAGE. Unless Cleveland can emerge unscathed from the East, which is no sure thing, the Lakers will enjoy home court advantage throughout the Western Conference playoffs and possibly through the NBA Finals. It’s hard to imagine any team beating the Lakers in a 7-game series where they have home court advantage. They will be favored over anybody but the Cavs.
~
(7) BEEN THERE AND DONE THAT. Don’t discount the importance of playoff and championship experience. Phil Jackson has never lost the opportunity to repeat or threepeat as NBA champions. The Lakers are still the reigning NBA champions and Kobe Bryant is the reigning NBA Finals MVP. When the final whistle blows and buzzer sounds, the Lakers will have won their 16th championship.
~
So chillax and just be patient. Soon Drew will be back and the real games will commence and we’ll all forget about these stupid losses to jacked up teams whom we know we can easily beat. Just like the team needs to ready to perform at their best once the playoffs start, so do we bloggers. We need to be ready to generate championship level karma to give our team the virtual boost to win it all again.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
TOM

Facts:
The Lakers record right now is 54-21.
7 gms left
Dallas the current second seed is 4 games behind.

Comments:
Lakers will be the 1 seed. This was expected to happen. The Lakers had a favorable schedule therefore winning early in the season. Despite playing mostly on the road, they still have the best record in the West. That is still good.
Proposition:
For all those fans who think the Lakers have no chance this year should pack it in now. Jump off the wagon and promise you wont be back until the Lakers gets eliminated. Then you can do your "I told you so, I am a genius" posts.

Laker Tom,

>>> WHY THIS LOSS DOESN’T MATTER

Thank you. A voice of sanity.

I'm still worried that PJ is more Capt. Queeg than Capt. Scully, this season. But I still have faith in the team's talent.

I also think all the screaming about the bench play is overwrought. The return of Andrew to the starting lineup and the return of Luke to the reserves should bolster the lineup, going forward.

I'm hoping I can wake up Thursday morning with complete amnesia about what I watched on this road trip. I'd like to think the team will inhale some amnesia producing potion and return to playing like their real selves on Friday night.

Jon K. said: "However, the Cavs were given 45 FREETHROWS and the Bucks were given 9 FREETHROWS. I can practically hear David Stern screaming at the refs between quarters.

It was just plain darned WEIRD the freethrow discrepancy."


I could tell you that the Bucks have the worst FT +/- in the league by a wide margin, but I doubt you listen to that type of reason.

I could remind you that the Lakers had basically the same free-throw discrepancy in a close game against Golden State 2 weeks ago, in a road game no less, but I'm sure you'll have an excuse for that.

I could point out that this was a meaningless game for the Cavs and it would be silly for the refs to try to cheat in their favor, but reason doesn't work with conspiracy theorists.

I could point out that the Cavs are only averaging 2.7 ft/game more than their opponents, which is 5th in the league and only 3 spots ahead of the Lakers' 2.2 ft/game more, but when would you start caring about logic?

You're probably just trying to distract from the fact that Lebron nearly had a triple double while making two clutch free throws to tie the game with 49 seconds left, then drove in for a lay-up to take the lead with 17 seconds left (isn't that a game-winner for Kobe in MM land?), then made a steal with 2 seconds left to preserve the win. And you're probably scared of him and getting "the refs gave it to him" excuses ready for the playoffs.

Don't worry about it. They've had no continuity with players this year and no one else to step up in a playoff atmosphere. If the Lakers ever start trying, they'll still beat them unless Lebron plays an all-time series.

By the way - isn't that 4 game-winning defensive plays for Lebron this year? 2 blocks of potential game-winning shots (including Durant) and 2 steals that preserved the game on the final possession (including Wade). Has anyone done that before? I would guess Hakeem, Pippen, or Wade if anyone.

Let me put it gently,

Laker Nation is going to freak the frick out if this team doesn't turn it on in the playoffs.

Apocalyptic freakout plus.

Really.

I know.

I'm patient. I have faith. But hell hast no fury like Laker Nation scorned.

Seriously, burn everyone not named Kobe, Pau, Andrew, Ron, Luke (yes, LUKE!) and Lamar. I love this team, but TURN IT FRICKEN ON!

What do we play for? RINGS!!!

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

GO LAKERS!!!

REPOST


Thanks Rick and Jeanette!

@LakerTom

"(3) BYNUM CHANGES EVERYTHING. In a way, these recent tough losses have given a lot of Lakers fans a chance to rethink their opinion and appreciation for what Andrew brings to the table and how important he is to balance the essentially finesse games of Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom. When the playoffs begin, Bynum and Artest will transform the character of the team from finesse to power."


That is my hope as well. Artest is bringing it pretty hard. He does something positive with the rock when he gets it and doesn't let up on D. He's playing with some fire right now.


Bynum compliments Gasol and Lamar better than most give him credit for. He can be foul prone (which is sometimes a result of our defensive seive at the PG position) and uninvolved defensively (hopefully something still a factor of his relative youth), but even at his most lackadiasical he gives us a player light years ahead of Powell and Mbenga.


Which is the infurating thing about the Lakers. They're all lollygagging lackadasical loafers listing light years behind their collective potential right now. How's that for an alliteration? I only wish it would translate to wins. Fancy writin' don't amount to much on hard wood.

LakerTom - home team is "amped"? That's just an excuse. How many of these road losses came in games where a significant percentage of the fans were rooting for the Lakers, including tonight's game? I doubt that trend will continue in the regular season.

First quarter deficits.
Perimeter defense
Fisher getting smoked.
Lakers victory percentage is much greater when they win the first quarter.
Its difficult for the Lakers to get a lead at the gate because the other team's PG
is fired up for a career nite guarded by Fisher.

Lakers losses suggest change is needed.

Not a speech by Kobe or Phil.

Change could be Fisher on the bench.
Doubtful.

No matter what Fisher starts and plays the meaningful minutes until the game is lost. Then Phil immediately pulls him.

Bynum's return is big.
LO is hurt.

Phil is blowing it by his stubborn refusal to change.
Not playing Sasha is stupid too.
Sasha is rightfully frustrated.
He sees Fisher getting toasted on defense
and clanking on offense.

Fisher starts 82 of 82 any bets that he doesn't?

Wow….. Anyhow, the playoffs start soon. If the post's look the same then as these last three losses, playoffs will be painful.

-----------------------------------------------------------

I for one think the playoffs will be great. Not a blind fan, but a true one. Blind foolish praise or simple criticism this blog has been recently, with a few admirable acceptations.

-----------------------------------------------------------

I’d rather ‘crit the blog, or bloggers rather than my Lakers… Most folks don’t read the blog right after a loss anyway. Tomorrow I expect the blog to blow up. Keep it real.

GO LAKERS!

M

What a hard job it is to be a journalist when comes to this kinda games. Our beloved MM have to type "lacking that urgency ..., it allowed the team's inconsistent chemistry..." over and over again because he cannot point fingers. Stu Lanz, poor guy, had to dig up depth to find words, once he cannot point fingers as well...

Well, I can! it is LACK OF PRATICE!

We got the ball, rim. They got the ball, score.
We got the ball, rim. They got the ball, score.
We got the ball, rim. They got the ball, score.
etc...

You don't expect to win like this, do you? Box score is nothing;the above, that's what I saw.

Still time, let's just stop missing those darn shots. Let's just start hitting those darn shots...

please?

Cheers.

M.M., "after all, the lakers played with a full effort against atlanta". mark, i didn't get to see the game, i was once again spared by the nba tv gods! BUT, i'm still trying to figure out, how a 17 point loss to the hawks can be construed as "playing with a full effort"?

btw, Kobe was good tonight. He was the only one to hit his shots.

lakeshow - as i mentioned in the story, the lapses had more to do with execution this time around and how the team's bad chemistry caught up to them. the lakers certainly tried, just didn't execute

MM

Jon K - bullseye brother!!! I know you are still rooting for the Lakers and so am I but I am not the eternal optimist. I think this Laker team has sunk to new lows and it's not going to be able to just turn it on when they think they can.

Some keep talking about wait until Bynum comes back - who even knows if he will be back for the playoffs - and if he does will he be able to revert straight to pre-injury status? Highly doubtful.

I think what is going to happen is that the Lakers will get bounced even before the WCF. The Lakers were better last year, had more to prove thus playing with a chip on their shoulder, and they STILL just squeaked out series wins over Houston and Denver.

This year, they are not as good. They have no team chemistry. Kobe is about to blow up. PJ is either playing mind games or has given up if the team isn't responding to his coaching. Blah blah blah. Many fans are banking on the team being able to beat any team in a 7 game series...I definitely do not see that. I think Dallas has enough talent since the trades to take 4 games. Denver would have but with kmart and karl out - maybe not. Clev and Orlando - both have something to prove and can take the Lakers in 7.

I'd actually rather see the Lakers get bounced early than lose to the Cavs and get their arses wiped off the floor and lbj and others doing their fricken dancing. It would be like the 08 game 6 finals but worse. We all know the cavs have the height to compete against us and also the outside firepower to destroy this team. If they're hot, we have no chance. It will be like when Billups went off against us.

When the Lakers lose because they continue to play like this in the playoffs, this blog and other sites will implode with the fury of laker nation. We were expecting a dynasty and it's turned into a travesty.

Media Guys who read this blog,

Ask Phil if the only the line up change possible is Bynum's return?

Ask Phil to give Lakers fans a Fisher DNP-CD
and divide minutes among Farmar, Brown and Sasha.

That would be change to believe in.

LAguy

you said: yellofever - so we agree that Lebron's teams, unlike Kobe's, tend to breeze through the playoffs against inferior opponents"

my response: no way no how.. we will NEVER agree on anything .. i cant believe i'm actually taking the time to respond to a LECRAB LOVER in a lakers blog. first and last time.

you said: So how does Lebron do in really tough series?

my response: very easy.. when in doubt PUT YOUR HEAD DOWN, LOWER UR SHOULDERS, CHARGE THE LANE, AND PRAY FOR A WHISTLE. but i dont blame lecrab for utilizing this strategy so effectively.. it has ALWAYS been his BIGGEST WEAPON in times of need... you want stats? lets chronicle some of his FT shooting in those memorable detroit, boston and orlando series you mention

you said: Against Detroit in '07: Again coming back from an 0-2 deficit, this time Lebron dominates game 5 by scoring the final 25 points, including go-ahead and tying dunks in the final 30 seconds of regulation and the game-winning layup with 4 guys on him.

my response: aaah that series they win 4 straight. i remember that series very well.. it was a very balanced series tied 2-2... then suddently lebron cant handle the pressure and starts barreling the lanes like a bowling bowl.. all of a sudden its whistle whistle whistle.. leloser was averaging about 8 trips to the lane first 4 games but gets 14 and 19 TRIPS in game 6 and 7 respectively... (PLS TRY TO FOLLOW TREND HERE)

you said: Against Boston in '08: Loses a tight series in which the home team wins every game. Scores 102 points in the final 3 games

my response: another memorable lecrab FT clinic.. he went to the line an average of 13x a game.. and again his highest FT output was game 5, 6,7 and every game it increased from 13, 15, 19 respectively.. (STARTING TO SEE A TREND YET??).. i did the math for you.. he also scored a total of 68 PTS in that entire series at the FT line... his total scoring output was 187 PTS.. meaning he averaged 36% of his PTS (or more than 1 out 3) at the FT LINE... and if he was more clutch and better than his 75% that series maybe that number would be closer to 40%.. WOW! STERN IN FULL EFFECT!

you said: Against Orlando in '09: Loses to Orlando in 6 games despite averaging an incredible 39-8-8 in the series.

my response: wow.. did lecrab ever come through in the clutch in this series?? out of his 39PTS PER GAME AVERAGE... do you really wanna know how FTs he averaged per game?? how bout a WHOPPING 16 FT PER GAME.. also averaged 1 of 3 PTS came at the line again.

conclusion: until lebron starts to actually make shots outside of the key in the playoffs WHEN IT REALLY COUNTS and not rely on the refs to constantly bail him out I GIVE HIM NO RESPECT and haters like you even less respect for buying into the "i love the king crap" that stern worked so hard to build) but hey very admirable for you to come to his defense so swiftly again.. you must be on 24hour high LECRAB ALERT. keep it up!!

ps.. (and apologies again hobbitmage.. i'm beginnin to find ur format very convenient to use.. thats a complement!)

I'm very frustrated with this Sasha situation because the last five or six games when he was still in the coaches' "good graces" he was playing limited but quite effective minutes. I really believed that he was getting ready to peak during the playoffs and be the spark we need. He still may be.

I think we are all on edge because we see weaknesses both on offense and defense that it looks like even non-elite teams can exploit. What's most frustrating is that virtually the same weaknesses show up night after night and for whatever reason the coaches/players seem unable to come up with the fix. I guess I'd rather have those weaknesses exposed now then in the playoffs. Remember folks, this season isn't over. it hasn't even started. we know this team is capable of greatness. If they lose every game until the playoffs and then win the championship, the season will have been a roaring success.

problem starts and ends with Bynum, simple as that. That 6 game winning streak that we had could be attributed to the team DEVELOPING chemistry. However, he has to get injured (like always), and throw everything off the boat. Just when the bench guys were getting used to everything, and LO was playing well, Bynum goes down. It's just a typical Laker problem, it's ridiculous.

Media Guys who read this blog,

Ask Phil if the only the line up change possible is Bynum's return?

Ask Phil to give Lakers fans a Fisher DNP-CD
and divide minutes among Farmar, Brown and Sasha.

That would be change to believe in.


Posted by: Todd


Todd, Unfortunately at least half of these Laker fans still think that Fish can play. I can't figure out what they are looking at when they watch the game.
75% of the time he is either out of position or to slow to react. He has broken the NBA record for bricks in a season.

Ok, I'm going to be the Skip Bayless of the group and disagree with Lakertom, Friedman, and the whole easy peasy crew a little bit. What we value in this blog is opinion, a difference of opinion, so let's not all jump on the "it doesn't matter BS bandwagon". Now I'm not goin fult tilt and say that they are horrible, or that they aren't nearly as good this year as last year's team. I'm not part of that fanatic Laker opinion. But let's be honest about a couple of things and be completely real about what kinda teams we will be facing on the road to the Larry O'brien trophy.


1st round- Yea we all know its San Antonio. They are old, their window has finally closed, but they are the 4 time champions with more experience than any 8 seed ever. Plus Tony Parker, the point guard killer, will be as rested as rested can be, with D-Fish, Farmar, and Brown looking like fried bacon served and delivered. We'll make it but it won't be a sweep that's for sure.


2nd round- Well it's the hottest team in the NBA, 17-4 since the all-star break, with their star player playing for a max contract and a Canadian player who has been torching point guards like he did when he was the 2 time MVP. Yeah beware of Phoenix, I don't think we'll lose, but a 6 or 7 game series is coming, mark my words. And by the way, that got a new Tim Thomas and his name is Channing let it fly Frye folks.


Western Conference Finals- It's looking like Dallas. I don't need to even talk about this one. With Dirk averaging 25 a game (but capable to put up 40 on any given night), Jason Terry constantly killing the Laker guards, the Washington additions in Caron and crew, making them the team with the best trade acquisition this year, plus the Matrix, yuck. I don't even want to think about a 7 game series with this team. Nuff said.


Oh and by the way... after that we got either the homecourt Cavs, who many say could have the only guy to have a better season than Michael freakin Jordan, plus Jamison, a rested Shaq for a rusty bynum, plus big Z, blah blah. Or maybe we'll get lucky and play the Magic who are 1 loss behind the Lakers at 52-22. Did I mention this is the 2nd hottest team in the NBA, at 16-4 since the all-star break. But these games don't matter right? You guys are either blind or delusional with that attitude. That's the same attitude the Laker bench has. These games don't matter? The truth is, if we lose in the post season to any of these capable teams, it will be because of these last 10 to 15 games of the season that you guys claim 'don't matter'.

yellofever - I named every single series. You cherrypicked the ones that fit your argument. Am I surprised?

I could cherry-pick too. Remember Kobe averaging 12 ft/game against Denver last year, despite shooting far more outside shots than Lebron? Or how about his insane SIXTEEN ft/game against Utah the year before, including 23 in a single game? His 18 free throws in a must-win game three against Boston? You must have forgotten that.

And Lebron can't score outside the lane? He shot 38% from three-point range in the Atlanta and Orlando series, scoring 20% of his points that way. When you combine those with the long twos, he scored just as many points from the perimeter as he did from the line.

In 06/07 you mention the 2 games where he went to the line a lot, while ignoring the 8 games surrounding those two where he went to the line much less frequently, only 6 ft/game in games 1-4 against Detroit (including one game with 0 trips) and only 7ft/game against the Spurs.

In 05/06 he averaged 8 ft/game in that epic Detroit series, including 2 games where he only went to the line twice.

yello

pretty brilliant. remember the game 5 w/detroit. at the end, le Crybaby pushed off Billups during the inbound pass and he ended at the foul line. enough said.

the funny part is listening to various commentators from various teams/cities. there r 2 new lines:

1. that was a le Crab fouls (as Le Crab going to the line)

2. that was a Le crab steps/dribble

only LA Guy accuses the Lakers fans being partial and having hatred against Le Crab. obviously, it is the entire nation and the world that points the same SCAM out. and not on a blog. on local/national/international television. (yes, many games are done with the local commentators, especially the ones picked up by the international tv channels)

the world is laughing at Le Brick

If I were Dr. Buss I would ask for a refund from Gasol and Odom. A complete waste of effort on their parts to put on the uniform tonight. Gasol should never talk about touches again because the ball goes to him; he just holds it too long then pass it out for someone else to take the responsibility of taking a shot or his moves to the basketball are so slow and methodical he gets push off his shot. Poor help defense and just a general lack of rebounding on his part. On a scale of 1 to 10 I give his game and effort a 4 for tonight. As for Odom, I think he is hurting physically but his lack of consistency is hurting the team. If 2 starters are out to lunch, Fisher being Fisher and the bench is non existent then you will lose. It is no coincidence that struggling teams get better playing this version of the Lakers. The backup center for the Hawks had his first double double in a year against these Lakers. For me guys like Farmer and Brown are playing themselves off this team because the rest of the bench are just window dressing.

Fan since 73,

I don't think they should overwork themselves on game day. Shooting is mostly muscle memory. If you shoot a lot before an actual game on game day you run the risk of running out of energy for the game that actually counts.
My formula for better shooting is this:

1. Shoot for about 3 hours on nights when there is no game. Stop and rest when your muscles are getting tires and drink electrolytes then go back and forth.

2. Shoot just enough to get warmed up on game day. Don't overdo it on game day! WARMING UP IS JUST THAT WARMING UP. Most of the day should consist of getting your mind prepared by meditation IMO.


3. Practices on game day should be very light and intended to get their minds and shooting stroke just in the right zone. ( Like when you drink you don't keep drinking to the point where you are drunk and waste away). I know it can be hard to stop shooting when you're making everything you are jacking up. I know this but you have to STOP here!!!!!

4. During pregame warmups just warm up on your stroke and don't waste energy on silly things.

5. Go very hard at practice after proper STRETCHING only 2 maybe 3 times a week when there are no games later that night. When I say hard I mean Hard. During the playoffs they can play very very hard ONLY once per week!!!

Phil needs to get them activated during pregame and get Andrew pumped up for defensive assignment.

If anything they shouldn't waste a lot of energy on game day. Sasha shoots good at practice but not as well in games that count, well Sasha my boy you need to cut down on shooting by a TON during practice on GAME NIGHTS ONLY. You can go hard on other days. Muscle memory needs the right amount of energy reserves to work like the muscle memory it is, otherwise its simply muscle forgottery.

Phil if you don't believe my theory of slashing Sasha's shooting at practice on game day do this for the next 3 games with Sasha. What do you have to loose? Give him minutes (Fisher's?) and let him loose shooting and by game 3 his confidence will be back and we'll hear Stu and the other guy saying "THE MACHINE IS BACK"!!! You are getting paid big bucks not to simply be safe, try some risks once in a while. This team played inspired with Benga a few games back. Take risks and use some imagination as I know there is a whole lot of activity in that great mind of yours.

Following my rules above will win a championship.

Not doing the things I have suggested is risky, but who am I. I'm not a coach, and I don't even have a job right now, but I watch every single game on my DVR. I get joy from watching and analyzing especially in slow motion every sequence of plays and I'm like an encyclopedia of the psychology of this current Lakers team and every single player in it. Morrison I'm not too sure about but everyone else I know what makes them tick, what their strengths and liabilities are. Nobody has to listen to me, but I know what is best for my baby(Lakers).

Luke can correct Artest's faulty chemistry with a few games in April. I'm sure of it, just as I'm sure that this is Fisher not hitting shots and Artest not getting the offense yet, fault. The Lakers are going to be fun once Luke plays about 2 or 3 games. I see it clear as day. CHEMISTRY IS COMING PEOPLE!!! I CAN SMELL IT COMING!!! Just use some imagination and considerations and it should be clear as daylight. To me it is anyhow.

PHIL DON'T OVERWORK THEM ON GAME DAY

The Sleeper Must Awaken

Let me get this straight

Sasha isn't playing because he hasn't apologised?

What are we in, Kindergarten?
This is professional sports where tempers flare, and Sasha has been a good soldier this year until this incident. If anything it's the coaching staff who should apologise for their effort.

Sasha is officially the scapegoat.

Laker is talent and deep team.They lost because they are outcoached by opponent.Pls don't tell me PJ got 10 rings.Replay the tape you can see clearly. On offense or deffense Laker totally lost nobody know what to do.PJ can not make a quick adjust or rotation.You can see the Laker play without game plan for O and D. PJ old and slow now.Remember Porland? w/o KOBE but TED W. show up Laker win with beatiful triangle O.

Good Article M.M
i agree that the Lakers might be waiting until the playoffs to turn on the switch. But can they? no, not the way they have been playing lately. If Kobe is frustrated then u know things are not going well.
All i know and think so far is that these playoffs are going to be very exciting/frustrating to our fans. i read a report on this site, which i forgot who it was, but the columnist said that we the Lakers have won it before and know how to win it again. That the Cavs are this year's version of the Lakers last year. When we faced them this year; he wasnt sure if the Cavs have it in them to win and beat the Lakers in a 7 game series.
I hope he is right, so far the Lakers are lost and seem to surrender when the calls dont go their way, i mean when Gasoft doesnt man up and play deense he complains/cries that he didnt get a call.
Im crossing my fingers for the playoffs, hopefully the teams haven't figured us out yet.

Greetings Lakeshow Fans,

Looks like the anti-Lakers critics are out in full force, especially some of the fans who have allowed doubt to creep in (funny how it all turned out last June). It's just human nature I presume...

Hmmm...the loss to the Hawks (which is a pretty darn good team itself) pretty much tells me that the Lakers are STILL not a healthy group "collectively as of now. Obviously, their timing and movement physically is hampered on both ends. As fans, let's not deny this bit of reality. The Lakers are not 54-21 thus far without being a darn good team in their own right.

We must keep in mind that a lot of the players CURRENTLY have a variety of hand/fingers (ESPECIALLY this area og the body strangely), knee, back, groin and foot issues that most likely linger for the rest of the season, into the playoffs, and the offseason. It's been VITTI time since day one...

There is no question that their will to fight through ADVERSITY is NOW in full effect...Other teams WANT what the the Lakers have, which is a "winning" tradition and title status. I'm actually glad they are going through it because it's going to either make them , or break them as a unit. I'm confident that they will see the ADVERSITY through like they have so many times before. This team is too good to be counted out just yet (BTW, you don't think that people too are doubting and counting out our historical nemesis, the Celtics as well? Hmmm...)

Believe me, top performing teams like Dallas, Denver, Utah, Cleveland, Atlanta, and Orlando are not going to publicly "trash talk" teams like the Lakers, Celtics and even Spurs moving forward. If they are all smart teams, they wouldn't dare do so. So much basketball left to play...and a lot to be DECIDED.

Remember, the playoffs are a whole DIFFERENT experience and animal. The stakes are quite high. The games start to slow down, players feel the pressure to perform...BTW, the last I checked, NONE of these teams mentioned have won the BIG prize EVER...The last three teams I mentioned above have. Hmmm...

BOTTOM LINE: Once the Lakers get a bit healthier the next couple of weeks collectively, we are going to see a better product on the floor on both ends. That's for SURE! The good news is that they haven't played their best basketball YET!

I expect KB24 to be a dangerous player come playoff time despite a dysfunctional shooting hand. Don't let his scowling nature, injury, and desire to dominate fool you. KB24 is a proven WINNER! The other guys are going to follow suit as their bodies physically get better. The mental aspect will soon follow...ala PHIL.

Also, who said repeating is going to be easy street? Defending a championship for that matter? We all knew that this season was going to be one heck of a journey for the Lakers filled with ADVERSITY and that their struggles would test the "true" faith of laker fans across the world. No question about it!

We have to believe that through the rough and tumble times, a great championship team is going to rise, from the starters to the challenged bench. The great news is that the championship is going to run through LA, PERIOD! My gut feeling tells me we should not gamble with that ace in mind...With Phil, KB24, and Fish, would you? Keep the FAITH fans.

BELIEVING did wonders for us last year, why not this year? Why not the Lakers AGAIN...Our team is about CHAMPIONSHIPS.

Laker pride through ALL and ANY ADVERSITY!

Peace!


jayden24

the loss in NO was very bad. Lakers have only one game in front of Orlando. if they will be tied at the end, the home court advantage will be decided by the conference record. Lakers 32-13, Orlando 33-13. Orlando can lose tomorrow in Dallas but that is against a western team. the rest of their schedule is very light compared to ours. obviously the Cavs were out of reach as record, but looks like now even Orlando will have the HCA. sad, but i'm sure they have their statistician.

1. "i did not see the game"

2. "i want a game report without the HISTRIONICS"

3. "looking at the scorebox, the team did not look focused"

some of the lines posted by Jon K.

-------------------------

i thought John K is synonym with histrionics.

i'm wondering how focused r U when u r looking at the +/- symbol. is it the SLANTED line? a little bit left? or right?

if you did not see the game why do u have to comment? can't you just listen? oh, noooooooooo. is it part of the HISTRIONICS?

---------------------

and as a suggestion: maybe u should stop bringing up the CAVS. u just fuel LA Guy who is always waiting for any occasion to splurge his Infinite love and to Worship the Chosen One.

plus i don't think most of us r really interested in Cavs issues. if we don't play them in the final (regardless which team does not make it) it is really not a very interesting subject. same as the Clippers. r u familiar with that team?
--------------------

now u may take a day off. histrionics or not, your favorite players stunk up the joint. nothing to report. just look at Kobe's face above in the video.

Seems to me this is an especially bad time for Sasha and the coaches to be pouting and not talking to each other.
Aren't these people professional adults?
How about sit down, talk it out, restate the expectations, shake hands and get back to trying to unify the team.
But noooooo.
Phil says Sasha hasn't yet atoned for what he did.
Huh?
Atoned for?
This is a microcosm of whats wrong with this team.
This is not a tightly nit group of guys who love each other.
Can you say i-m-p-l-o-s-i-o-n boys and girls?

WHY THIS LOSS DOES MATTER

Overall I think you make a strong case for not panicing in Lakerland Tom, but while I like a lot of your assertions, I think they are somewhat flawed.

"(1) THE GAMES DON’T COUNT." The idea that these games don't matter ignores recent playoff prescedent that says that teams who are playing well leading up to the playoffs generally fare better than teams with HCA. The 2004 Pistons didn't have HCA in the ECF or Finals, but they were playing so well in the last few weeks that the momentum carried them to the title, sort of like LA last year. The 2006 Pistons, 2006 Spurs, 2007 Mavs and 2004 Pacers all had HCA throughout the conference finals and none made it to the finals. Connection: All played poorly down the stretch.

(2) "THE OPPONENTS DON’T MATTER." -In terms of the recent losses this is true, but what about their 2-2 versus Mavs or 2-1 verses Denver or 1-3 versus Cle/Orl- At best it emboldens their possible playoff opponents to believe they can win. Belief is all some teams need to win a series. The Lakers have always been so good in "statement games," Cleveland last year or Portland in 2000. This year, they are 5-10 against the division leaders in each conference. That's problematic.

(3) "BYNUM CHANGES EVERYTHING."-His health is a concern. Will he be back on time and healthy? If he is, how effective will he be? There are still question marks on this one.

(4) "SIZE MATTERS IN PLAYOFFS. " -Great point but how much will Pau have left in the tank come playoff time? He's logging a lot of minutes right now as is Odom. Plus Odom is clearly hurting from the shoulder injury.

(5) "GOTTA WIN 4 IN PLAYOFFS."-Last year a not so great Houston team won three. If they are healthy and rested, I think they probably will still win the West, but they are neither right now.

(6) HOME COURT ADVANTAGE. Again, this is irrelevant because teams with HCA lose all the time at home as LA did in 2004 finals.

(7) "BEEN THERE AND DONE THAT."-Many have mentioned the fact that PJ's teams always win titles in multiples which I sincerely believe is irrelevant. The three-peat Lakers had Shaq and three-peat Bulls had Jordan. The most dominant players in the game at the time. This Laker team doesn't have a force like that right now. Kobe is Kobe and he's still great but where is his consistent Pippen to play consistent defense or Horry to hit big shots or Rodman to carry that swagger? This squad is not nearly as deep as those three-peat teams.

Who knows, this recent level of play could be "Disinformation: false or inaccurate information that is spread deliberately." You play like you're wounded and then, BAM! You never know, it could be a mind game...

*
TAKE A CHILL PILL AND CALL ME WHEN THE PLAYOFFS START – BANDWAGON
*
(01) LAKERTOM – OWNER – WHY THIS LOSS DOESN’T MATTER – (1) THE GAMES DON’T COUNT. (2) THE OPPONENTS DON’T MATTER. (3) BYNUM CHANGES EVERYTHING (4) SIZE MATTERS IN PLAYOFFS. (5) GOTTA WIN 4 IN PLAYOFFS. (6) HOME COURT ADVANTAGE. (7) BEEN THERE AND DONE THAT. Don’t discount the importance of playoff and championship experience. Phil Jackson has never lost the opportunity to repeat or threepeat as NBA champions. The Lakers are still the reigning NBA champions and Kobe Bryant is the reigning NBA Finals MVP. When the final whistle blows and buzzer sounds, the Lakers will have won their 16th championship.
So chillax and just be patient. Soon Drew will be back and the real games will commence and we’ll all forget about these stupid losses to jacked up teams whom we know we can easily beat. Just like the team needs to ready to perform at their best once the playoffs start, so do we bloggers. We need to be ready to generate championship level karma to give our team the virtual boost to win it all again.
(02) LONG LIVE CHICK – DRIVER - I still have a lot of hope that we can turn this around and win the prize. It won't be easy, but we can definitely do it. We have the pieces. THERE IS A LOT OF POWER IN A POSITIVE STREAM OF ENERGY AND THOUGHTS. Kill the negativity starting right here on this blog.
(03) MTI312 – SECURITY - Facts: The Lakers record right now is 54-21. 7 gms left Dallas the current second seed is 4 games behind. comments: Lakers will be the 1 seed. This was expected to happen. The Lakers had a favorable schedule therefore winning early in the season. Despite playing mostly on the road, they still have the best record in the West. That is still good. Proposition: For all those fans who think the Lakers have no chance this year should pack it in now. Jump off the wagon and promise you wont be back until the Lakers gets eliminated. Then you can do your "I told you so, I am a genius" posts.
(04)
(05) RICK FRIEDMAN – RIDING SHOTGUN - Laker Tom, Thank you. A voice of sanity. I'm still worried that PJ is more Capt. Queeg than Capt. Scully, this season. But I still have faith in the team's talent. I also think all the screaming about the bench play is overwrought. The return of Andrew to the starting lineup and the return of Luke to the reserves should bolster the lineup, going forward.
(06) JON K – UNDERCOVER AGENT - Let me put it gently, Laker Nation is going to freak the frick out if this team doesn't turn it on in the playoffs. Apocalyptic freakout plus. I'm patient. I have faith. But hell hast no fury like Laker Nation scorned. Seriously, burn everyone not named Kobe, Pau, Andrew, Ron, Luke (yes, LUKE!) and Lamar. I love this team, but TURN IT FRICKEN ON!
(07) JAMIE SWEET - That is my hope as well. Artest is bringing it pretty hard. He does something positive with the rock when he gets it and doesn't let up on D. He's playing with some fire right now.
Bynum compliments Gasol and Lamar better than most give him credit for. He can be foul prone (which is sometimes a result of our defensive seive at the PG position) and uninvolved defensively (hopefully something still a factor of his relative youth), but even at his most lackadiasical he gives us a player light years ahead of Powell and Mbenga. It can't be all doom and gloom. They'll turn it around.
(08) M - I for one think the playoffs will be great. Not a blind fan, but a true one. Blind foolish praise or simple criticism this blog has been recently, with a few admirable acceptations. I’d rather ‘crit the blog, or bloggers rather than my Lakers… Most folks don’t read the blog right after a loss anyway. Tomorrow I expect the blog to blow up. Keep it real.
(09) MAGIC PHIL - Still time, let's just stop missing those darn shots. Let's just start hitting those darn shots...please? Cheers.
(10) DWNTWN ATTY - . Remember folks, this season isn't over. it hasn't even started. we know this team is capable of greatness. If they lose every game until the playoffs and then win the championship, the season will have been a roaring success.
(11) POO - Luke can correct Artest's faulty chemistry with a few games in April. I'm sure of it, just as I'm sure that this is Fisher not hitting shots and Artest not getting the offense yet, fault. The Lakers are going to be fun once Luke plays about 2 or 3 games. I see it clear as day. CHEMISTRY IS COMING PEOPLE!!! I CAN SMELL IT COMING!!!
(12) TROLL MAN - The Sleeper Must Awaken
(13) SOME DUDE - Man you guys are spoiled. Lakers still have the 2nd best record in the league, but they lose a couple games in a row and all of a sudden it's all wrong... this reminds me of Christmas Day when the Lakers were like 24 - 3 but were losing at home to the Cavs and getting booed. Really?
(14) JEANETTE - Jamie Sweet, excellent post. Now I feel much better.
(15) RAZDIZZLEFOSHIZZLE - The whole thing is that we as fans of this Lakers team know that this squad is capable of being very scary, but for whatever reason, we haven't seen much. I just hope this is only a phase that the Lakers will soon snap out of before heading into the playoffs.
(16) I'm taking things in stride, and I'm thankful that we are in the position that we are. I definitely won't be in the "woe-is-us" mode
(17) MAMBA24 – SLEEPY – Ho hum, please somebody call me when the Playofs start!
(18)

1,2,3......CANCUN!!! Looks like majority of the Lakers are already doing a Van Exel.

*** IS IT OVER ***
Is it over, will it go away, The regular season so the real games they can play
This close to playoffs, let the players rest, The NFL knows how to do this best
We’ve cinched everything worth anything; Now rest your players so they get back that spring
That spring that helps make the jump shot fall, legs are kind of important playing basketball
Let a Laker get hurt playing a meaningless game, then just who will be the one to blame
The Lakers played in finals 2 years in a row, What this does to the body God only knows.
Not just the body but also the mind, 2 full seasons thru the Finals is a very long time
The Bulls 3 peated twice you know, but there’s more to the story that I will show
After each 3Peat MJ retired if you recall, His body was through from so much Basketball
Each time he retired for over a year, he needed the time to get his body back in gear
So rest your regulars, you know I’m right, let them get fully healthy for the real fight
Quite as it’s kept most of the team is ill, but they play on to match the Mamba’s will
Courage is fine but don’t you be insane, you don’t play as well when you’re in pain
This no excuse that I offer here, it’s just the truth and I am sincere
Kobe is hurt, as well as Dfish too, Lo, Pau & some more of the crew.
But they don’t want to earn a “Soft” label, so they soldier on even if the bodies not able
So that’s my spin on why they play as they do, No matter what Freaking Lakers I’m with you

What I see is the same thing that happened back in '04 when they lost to the Pistons. The team is starting to faze Phil out of their eardrums. You have guys ***ching at the coaches (Sasha), not playing hard or commited (Farmar,Brown,Fisher, hell the whole team), lack of focus, satisfied with winning one championship and so on and so on. I'm tired of turning on Sportscenter and seeing them get their butt kicked. I know this team has the talent to win it all, however, somewhere you have to have the wherewithal to put everything aside and accomplish the goal you have in front of you. I'm still waiting for the real Ron Artest to show up and put his foot down with some of these players. Yes its Kobe's team, but Ron, please kick some of the guys butts so they can get it in gear. Ron, we need the looney side of you on the court to get in the other teams head. I've seen Ron play may five good games all year. And like I said in the summer and will say it now, the front office did a terrible job of putting this bench together. Where are the shooters at on the bench? Can anyone name one? Regardless of what happens this year in the playoffs, I don't believe Phil is coming back next year cause the guys have tuned him out. Why, who knows? The bench will have to be overhauled in a major way. And do not be surprised if Kobe opts out of his contract if the front office does not make guarantees to fix this terrible bench. Every team in the league plays hard against the Lakers and that's understandable. But, fellas please show some heart if any of you have some. I'm tired of reading the blog about how terrible they played, lack of effort (you guys get paid a helluva lot of money not to bring it every night), cohesiveness (this is basically the same team that won it all last, so how do you not have cohesion). Somebody pass me a glass of brandy please cause I'm very pissed right now. I live in Dallas and have to hear these Mavs fans everyday and I need my boys to handle their *%&@in business and get it together. 7 games left and these 7 are crucial and against teams who feel the time is theirs right now and are trying to make a statement. Take off your panties Lakers and put your big boy draws on!!!! I'm out!!!!

@POO, YOU MUST SHARE THE "SPICE" WITH ALL OF US!!
Mamab24(Larry)

*
ALL POINTS BULLETIN….(Where are the Real Lakers have you seen them)- BANDWAGON
*
(01) LAKESHOWINPHX – OWNER - ! let's put out an A.P.B..... where are the real L.A. Lakers? have you seen them?
(02) MAMBA24 – DRIVER – I’ll track those guy’s down Laker Nation Don’t worry. Lol!
(03) RIDING SHOTGUN - ? -

I wonder what causes a person to be a troll?

I assume that their mother didn't love them.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!

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

GO LAKERS!!!!

He has broken the NBA record for bricks in a season.

Posted by: DFish | March 31, 2010 at 10:39 PM

Just curious, what exactly is the NBA record for missed shots in a season (i.e. "bricks")?

Do you happen to have a number and a verifiable source for said record?

Reasons why I don't want to play Cleveland in the Finals:

1. When we beat them, I will literally have LeBronaics throw glasses at me and then be charged with assault when I defend myself.

2. The Q is a weird place. I will state unequivically that it is the least pleasant arena that I have ever attended a game at. Why? Sensory overload. No dead space. Robot voices constantly telling the crowd what to do and how to feel. Really weird. I understand why the Cavs have such a good home record. They're the only ones who are numb to the strange environment.

3. The Cavs' bench plays with chemistry, while our bench plays like a bunch of high school students thrown into their first NBA game.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!

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

GO LAKERS!!!!

Luke is supposed to be back on Sunday.

Thank God.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!

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

GO LAKERS!!!

Let me get this straight Sasha isn't playing because he hasn't apologised? What are we in, Kindergarten?Posted by: Troll Man | April 01, 2010 at 01:26 AM

ROFLMFAO!!! HAHAHAHAHA OH THE HUMAITY!!! RIGHT ON TROLL MAN!!

Luke is supposed to be back on Sunday. Th!ank God.Posted by: Jon K. | April 01, 2010 at 07:59 AM

Please, stop it!!! ROFLMFAO!! Oh praise the Lord, wer're saved now! hahahahha!!!

Ouchhhhhhhh - I don't troll other team's message boards, but in the interactions I've seen on things like ESPN's Daily Dime it certainly looks like most fans respect Lebron's skills. I sure you believe that every commentator and basketball expert out there is a hack, and it's only the "true Kobe fan boys" who know the truth about Lebron.

Oh, and yellofever's "expert analysis" points out Lebron's "whopping" free throw totals, which I already showed were cherry-picked, not to mention matched by Kobe himself in other series? What if I pointed out that Kobe scored 31% of his points against Denver on ft's, or an incredible FORTY PERCENT of his points against Utah the year before on free throws?

Oh, I know, when Lebron scores 32% of his points on free throws its a conspiracy and evidence of no skill, but when Kobe scores 40% on his points on free throws it's just proof that no one can defend him, right?

You fail again.

btw - I love the fact that you use 6 inflammatory nicknames for a player in a post where you're claiming you're not biased. I don't see any other fans using negative nicknames for any other star players, even Kobe.

LakerTom,

you wrote: (2) THE OPPONENTS DON’T MATTER. Not only do the games not matter but neither have the opponents inspired. The Lakers are notorious for playing down to the level of their opponents and it was obvious that the team just did not view the Thunder, Hornets, or Hawks a serious challengers. Not only do they need the games to count, but they also need an opponent whom they respect.
~
(3) BYNUM CHANGES EVERYTHING. In a way, these recent tough losses have given a lot of Lakers fans a chance to rethink their opinion and appreciation for what Andrew brings to the table and how important he is to balance the essentially finesse games of Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom. When the playoffs begin, Bynum and Artest will transform the character of the team from finesse to power.
~
(4) SIZE MATTERS IN PLAYOFFS. This Lakers team, especially with the “trade” of Ariza for Artest, is built for the playoffs, when everything slows down and intensifies, when full court turns into half court, and when tall ball smothers and eliminates small ball. While teams will still try to outrun the Lakers in the playoffs, they’ll find the tempo and pace of the game dramatically slower.

my response:

1st. Hello.

2nd. Smoke some of that with me. Don't hoard!

3rd. Disrespect of the opponents and of the game is part of why we didn't
break the bulls record and will be part of why we don't repeat.
[ if we don't repeat. ] Isn't this the same thing that happened when we
lost to Boston in 08?

4th. Bynum changes *NOTHING*! Here's why:

1. In the last game against the Orlando Magic, Bynum played just as he did
last year. He was quickly in foul trouble. He will be in foul trouble again.
Why? He hasn't learned how to play in traffic. He hasn't learned how to
play against skilled big men.

2. Bynum cannot make shots for D-Fish, Artest, J-Farmar or S-Brown.

3. Bynum cannot make catches/shots for Pau. Pau has clearly stated that
the offense should run through him. He has been noticeably clumsy
this year. There is no reason to believe that he will be less clumsy in the
playoffs.

4. Our defensive coach is now head coach in Minnesota.

5. Our quickness won us a championship last year. There have been a number
of teams who won the championship without a *HEAVY* center. It
was *NOT* our size.

6. Every serious contender seems to have upgraded their team. We did not.
We made a small change & it has yet to play out as to if it was an upgrade.
Yes, Artest is bigger, feistier, & a smarter bb player than Ariza. Ariza is
longer & quicker. Speed kills. Ask Magic about the 1st time and the last
time he played the bulls in the finals.

7. Your analysis of the tempo of the playoffs is flawed. It doesn't matter if
the tempo is fast & furious or slow as molasses. If our perimeter shooting
remains as it has for the entire season, we are screwed!

These are some things you didn't speak of:

Bynum's conditioning & play when he returns. My questions:

Q1. If Bynum can't run because of his Achilles tendon, why will he come back
in basketball shape?

Q2. If Bynum isn't getting in the final practices/games before the playoffs
start, why will he not pick up stupid fouls, make the correct reads/passes,
remember to focus on defense instead of offense?

Q3. If the chemistry of the bench is screwed because Lamar is starting, why
will their chemistry sync/mesh/grow when he returns to the bench? You
will essentially be adding two players to the bench. Luke & Lamar. They
haven't played together for the entire year.

Kobe does shoot FTs better than Lebron, that's about the only thing.

What I am afraid of is we play Portland-1st round, Denver-2nd round, Dallas-3rd round, and finally Cavs-4th round. That would be my nightmare that is coming to life!!!

the lakers need to be more consistent in games and have a will to win every single game. The way their playing right now there is no chance that the lakers can win another championship!!!!

@JAMIE SWEET, Your quote I used in the Bandwagon is more than...OUT FREAKIN STANDING! It is MAGNIFICENT!!! Kudos brother Jamie! I salute you sir!
Mamba24(LarrY)

I'm pretty pumped that the pre-season is finally coming to an end. It drags on and on. They've accomplished 1 of the most important pre-season goals by locking up homecourt and fell short of cementing the effort by having the best overall record. It would be nice if they used these final games to get into season mode, but I have no doubt either way that they will be ready in a few weeks

The Lakers are designed to win 16 games between April and June. While any team is capable of beating any team on any given night, at full strength, I don't believe there is a team out there that can beat us in 4 of 7.

@DWNTWN ATTY, You know you're right counselor! Keep on keeping it real!
Mamba24(larry)

*
ALL POINTS BULLETIN….(Where are the Real Lakers have you seen them)- BANDWAGON
*
(01) LAKESHOWINPHX – OWNER - ! let's put out an A.P.B..... where are the real L.A. Lakers? have you seen them?
(02) MAMBA24 – DRIVER – I’ll track those guy’s down Laker Nation Don’t worry. Lol!
(03) RIDING SHOTGUN - ? -

*
TAKE A CHILL PILL AND CALL ME WHEN THE PLAYOFFS START – BANDWAGON
*****
Moving on from this road trip, moving on from this mental place & moving forward. Finding spirit. Inside that locker room is a team of Champions who have lost their way. Phil talks about journeys. They have embarked on one now. My hope is that it is a journey to the roots of the team. A journey into the spirit of what this team is about. Rediscovering the joy of the game. It will always be a game. It's only work when you don't play. @ JAMIE SWEET
*****
(01) LAKERTOM – OWNER – WHY THIS LOSS DOESN’T MATTER – (1) THE GAMES DON’T COUNT. (2) THE OPPONENTS DON’T MATTER. (3) BYNUM CHANGES EVERYTHING (4) SIZE MATTERS IN PLAYOFFS. (5) GOTTA WIN 4 IN PLAYOFFS. (6) HOME COURT ADVANTAGE. (7) BEEN THERE AND DONE THAT. Don’t discount the importance of playoff and championship experience. Phil Jackson has never lost the opportunity to repeat or threepeat as NBA champions. The Lakers are still the reigning NBA champions and Kobe Bryant is the reigning NBA Finals MVP. When the final whistle blows and buzzer sounds, the Lakers will have won their 16th championship. So chillax and just be patient. Soon Drew will be back and the real games will commence and we’ll all forget about these stupid losses to jacked up teams whom we know we can easily beat. Just like the team needs to ready to perform at their best once the playoffs start, so do we bloggers. We need to be ready to generate championship level karma to give our team the virtual boost to win it all again.
(02) LONG LIVE CHICK – DRIVER - I still have a lot of hope that we can turn this around and win the prize. It won't be easy, but we can definitely do it. We have the pieces. THERE IS A LOT OF POWER IN A POSITIVE STREAM OF ENERGY AND THOUGHTS. Kill the negativity starting right here on this blog.
(03) MTI312 – SECURITY - Facts: The Lakers record right now is 54-21. 7 gms left Dallas the current second seed is 4 games behind. comments: Lakers will be the 1 seed. This was expected to happen. The Lakers had a favorable schedule therefore winning early in the season. Despite playing mostly on the road, they still have the best record in the West. That is still good. Proposition: For all those fans who think the Lakers have no chance this year should pack it in now. Jump off the wagon and promise you wont be back until the Lakers gets eliminated. Then you can do your "I told you so, I am a genius" posts.
(04)
(05) RICK FRIEDMAN – RIDING SHOTGUN - Laker Tom, Thank you. A voice of sanity. I still have faith in the team's talent. I also think all the screaming about the bench play is overwrought. The return of Andrew to the starting lineup and the return of Luke to the reserves should bolster the lineup, going forward.
(06) JON K – UNDERCOVER AGENT - Let me put it gently, Laker Nation is going to freak the frick out if this team doesn't turn it on in the playoffs. Apocalyptic freakout plus. I'm patient. I have faith. But hell hast no fury like Laker Nation scorned. Seriously, burn everyone not named Kobe, Pau, Andrew, Ron, Luke (yes, LUKE!) and Lamar. I love this team, but TURN IT FRICKEN ON!
(07) JAMIE SWEET - Moving on from this road trip, moving on from this mental place and moving forward. Finding spirit. Inside that locker room is a team of Champions who have lost their way. Phil talks about journeys. They have embarked on one now. My hope is that it is a journey to the roots of the team. A journey into the spirit of what this team is about. Rediscovering the joy of the game. It will always be a game. It's only work when you don't play.
(08) M - I for one think the playoffs will be great. Not a blind fan, but a true one. Blind foolish praise or simple criticism this blog has been recently, with a few admirable acceptations. I’d rather ‘crit the blog, or bloggers rather than my Lakers… Most folks don’t read the blog right after a loss anyway.
(09) MAGIC PHIL - Still time, let's just stop missing those darn shots. Let's just start hitting those darn shots...please? Cheers.
(10) DWNTWN ATTY - . Remember folks, this season isn't over. it hasn't even started. we know this team is capable of greatness. If they lose every game until the playoffs and then win the championship, the season will have been a roaring success. I'm pretty pumped that the pre-season is finally coming to an end. It drags on and on. They've accomplished 1 of the most important pre-season goals by locking up homecourt and fell short of cementing the effort by having the best overall record. It would be nice if they used these final games to get into season mode, but I have no doubt either way that they will be ready in a few weeks. The Lakers are designed to win 16 games between April and June. While any team is capable of beating any team on any given night, at full strength, I don't believe there is a team out there that can beat us in 4 of 7.
(11) POO - Luke can correct Artest's faulty chemistry with a few games in April. I'm sure of it. T he Lakers are going to be fun once Luke plays about 2 or 3 games. I see it clear as day. CHEMISTRY IS COMING PEOPLE!!! I CAN SMELL IT COMING!!!
(12) TROLL MAN - The Sleeper Must Awaken
(13) SOME DUDE - Man you guys are spoiled. Lakers still have the 2nd best record in the league, but they lose a couple games in a row and all of a sudden it's all wrong... this reminds me of Christmas Day when the Lakers were like 24 - 3 but were losing at home to the Cavs and getting booed. Really?
(14) JEANETTE - Jamie Sweet, excellent post. Now I feel much better.
(15) RAZDIZZLEFOSHIZZLE - This Lakers team know that this squad is capable of being very scary, but for whatever reason, we haven't seen much. I hope this is only a phase that the Lakers will soon snap out of
(16) I'm taking things in stride, and I'm thankful that we are in the position that we are. I definitely won't be in the "woe-is-us" mode
(17) MAMBA24 – SLEEPY – Ho hum, please somebody call me when the Playofs start!
(18) THE OUTLAW - I feel strangely calm about this. And I'm not usually calm when my Lakers lose. Come June, we won't even remember this. Or if we do, it'll be a vague recollection, a mere moonshadow of a memory that fades in the stark morning light of a victory parade. I still believe, and I always will, until the purple and gold tinsel drops from the sky.
(19)

Oucchhhhhh - I agree with you for once. If Jon K. didn't bring up the Lebron/Cavs, I wouldn't have replied. The topic had nothing to do with the Laker game at all. It's interesting that he brings that focus into a Laker message board.

Jon K. - I'm still waiting for your response on getting shown how silly your free throw conspiracy theory was. Which part had you forgotten - that it was a meaningless game, that the Bucks are way out in front with the worst free throw differential in the league, that the Lakers got just as bad a differential in a close game only two weeks ago, or that the Lakers and Cavs average nearly the exact same free throw differential?

Tom Tom - that's exactly what I was thinking 3 weeks ago. Now, though, I'm not sure if any of those three teams are quite as scary as they looked at points earlier in this season. Other than Dallas they've all had some really disruptive injuries, and other than the Cavs they've all played really inconsistent over the last month or so. Still, it would be 4 straight weeks of real challenges.

Just finished to watch the game rerun over here (yesterday night... things drove another road than teh planned one: message to my fellow chatter advisers... THANK YOU. All was solved and fine :)) and well...

If that was an advanced April Fools, it wasn't pretty nor entertaining at all.

I have to say I was actually expecting it.

I was so expecting it, I didn't vote in the poll before the game chat about which team was going to win.

Because I honestly felt that could have been NOT us.

MM, your analysis in this article is completely shareable by me.

Under these conditions, all I feel we can really do is sit down, wait, (hope) and expect.

If these tensions can built and glue the team together, we won't have problems.

If the torns will be instead not conjunctive, but disjuntive, well... you get the point.

I am confident the first option still the most likeable and more natural to happen.

But I have no crystal ball (nor I would like to have it), so all is up in the air.
For what it counts, I feel lots of the comments about the disgrace this team might be into at the moment are like... ways to heal a possible future pain.

It's like lots of people don't wanna face a certain reality that tehy don't want to witness, then they exorcise it by actually painting it even more tragic than it is at the moment.

I am different.

I will watch what comes like another chapter in the glorious Laker history, and history might be good this chapter or not, but still be part of the glory this team has made me to love and live and get into so widely.

I still believe odds are all on our side.

I do.

If I will be wrong, it will be just a matter of a year more waiting.

It's not a bad position, really, to be a laker fan.

It still not even when a road trip like this one we've just accomplished (?) to make question our own pride and our players skills displayed.

Which isn't my case anyway.

My pride is intact, my love for my players is intact, and my hope will never, ever vanish.

Just a final message to MM: THANK YOU ; to justanothermambafan : dear... hope you get the speediest recovery!!; and to wes, phred and those who have helped me yesterday. You have been adorable :)

PS: Kobe with that face at the end of the game... whooooo.
*chilllllllz down my spine*
Scary.
Scary.
Scary.

My pride is intact, my love for my players is intact, and my hope will never, ever vanish. PS: Kobe with that face at the end of the game... whooooo. *chilllllllz down my spine*
Scary.
Scary.
Scary.
Posted by: ZairaAmaterasu | April 01, 2010 at 10:21 AM
*
ZAIRA, OUR BLOG GODDESS, No OUT FREAKIN STANDING! for you, just a simply; MAGNIFICENT!!!!!!
MAMBA24(Larry)

He has broken the NBA record for bricks in a season.

Posted by: DFish | March 31, 2010 at 10:39 PM

Just curious, what exactly is the NBA record for missed shots in a season (i.e. "bricks")? Do you happen to have a number and a verifiable source for said record? Posted by: Caliphilosopher | April 01, 2010 at 07:46 AM

CALLIII!!! THAT'S WHAT I'M TALKING ABOUT!!


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