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Kobe Bryant's imprint in Lakers' 111-87 victory over Oklahoma City goes beyond the box score

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The Lakers had spent plenty of time Monday going through all that went wrong in their embarrassing Game 4 loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder. And it featured plenty of items to go over: the Lakers' poor shooting, poor rebounding, poor effort at the free-throw line and of course, the team's poor ability to counter the Thunder's transition points. Once the lengthy session ended, Lakers guard Kobe Bryant approached Coach Phil Jackson with a simple request.

"He said I'd like to take Westbrook," Jackson recalled Bryant saying.

Bryant was referring, of course, to Oklahoma City guard Russell Westbrook, the speedy UCLA product who had been largely instrumental in burning the Lakers' with 72 points in transition in the first four games, as well as making drives to the basket with ease past Lakers guard Derek Fisher. This request came from a player who vowed not wanting to guard him ever since the beginning of the series and who had been dealing with an assorted number of injuries. Although the avulsion fracture to his right index finger had officially healed, he still had to deal with arthritis in the knuckle of his same finger, his sore knee and sprained left ankle. But with the Lakers tied 2-2 with Oklahoma City in a series that became more and more competitive, Bryant simply chalked up the decision to "we had to make some adjustments."

Bryant's defense on Westbrook probably served as the biggest adjustment in the Lakers' 111-87 Game 5 victory Tuesday over the Oklahoma City Thunder. His official stat line -- 13 points on four of nine shooting - may appear mild compared to Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol combining for 46 points on 18 of 26 shooting, or even Ron Artest's shooting resurgence (a six of 11 clip for 14 points).  But there's a reason OKC Coach Scott Brooks argued Bryant's play "set the tone defensively" and Artest thought it was a "smart switch." 

He largely limited Westbrook to 15 points on four of 13 shooting, the exact performance the Lakers needed after they were left scratching their heads on whether they could stop Westbrook, and more importantly, responded to the Thunder's imposing Game 4 victory. 

"If we’re going to be eliminated I didn’t want to go in thinking I could’ve done something about it," Bryant said. "I accept the challenge."

This was a different type of challenge Bryant embraced this series. First came his ability to overcome his nagging injuries and still showcase his scoring dominance in Game 2. Then came his ability to do that to the extreme in Game 3. That followed with Bryant taking the opposite approach in Game 4, opting not to take any shots in the entire first quarter while the team worked to get the ball inside. His approach in Game 5 seemed to serve as the best approach, with Bryant still leaving an imprint on the game even if it didn't involve any late-game theatrics. 

"Kobe started off the game just giving me turns and assists," Bynum said of Bryant, who has seven assists. "Pau, also. That got me started early. As far as points in the paint, we were moving the ball and moving ourselves. When you do that, it forces defenses to collapes and then you get wide open cuts."

That started fairly early in the game, with Bryant throwing an alley oop lob for Bynum for a 6-0 lead, Bryant swiping a pass from Durant that led to an easy fast-break bucket for Bynum. And the chemistry continued onward. He had his shot back, such as when he cut up off Gasol’s down screen and pulled up for an elbow jumper as well as his runner that gave the Lakers a 55-34 half-time lead. He had lift, such as when Bryant received a pass from Gasol backdoor and converted on a reverse layup, or when he drove the lane in the third quarter past Westbrook and dumped a pass to Gasol for the layup. And he still had enough energy to play defense, making it a long and frustrating night for Westbrook.

"It’s more of a thrill [than scoring]; the defensive side of things because it’s harder," Bryant said."A guy with the ball for the most part dictates the tempo. The defensive play, it’s a bigger thrill for me personally than me scoring."

Yet for the Lakers, it was something that helped the team the most in retaking control of the series.

--Mark Medina

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

Photo: Lakers guard Kobe Bryant spins past Thunder forward Kevin Durant (background) to score in Game 5 on Tuesday night at Staples Center. Credit: Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times.

 
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Can't say I was surprised. Enjoyed that some of the trolls (likable but nonetheless trolls) decided to show up in force right before this game, as if they were vultures circling some dead meat.

Nothing like home cooking. That said, I think this closes out in the Blunderdome. The Blunder haven't had to deal with an elimination before, I think they succumb to their own pressure and inexperience to adjust.

I scanned through the comments after the win and can't find the bridge jumpers. Did they go through with it? They have a problem by concluding prematurely I guess. In more ways than one. If you know what I mean?
PT and Troy however, here's what I think. Although not the premature type like the others, damn...it must suck to be you! You're a "FAN"! Leave the concerns to the Lakers organization. That's their job. That's the coaches job and they have a proven track record. Sheez!
Just enjoy the awakening and EXPECT them to keep it up and not worry.

Now about the game, I have to views. One biased and the other realist.
Biased:
The Lakers gave OKC a gift. Because they are newbies and their hometown crowd were great. Hey, the Lakers got their measure, why ruin their party. It's their first playoff appearance might as well make it special. Haha!!!!

Reality:
the Lakers are just that much better than the Thunder. It's a matchup of newcomers vs. playoff vets.

ps. Ariza is Eddie Jones. At least Jones was an all star. Admit it Ariza lovers, you got dumped and he is now with the Rockets fans. Get over it. Time will heal!
Physical over finesse anytime!

Oh! Good morning btw!

Did Ron's ability to Dunk in traffic have anything to do with his haircut? Maybe it was just that little extra weight that was holding him back?

I loved Eddie but one difference between him and Trevor is that Eddie couldn't hit big shots in the playoffs, at least not when he was with the Lakers. Trevor didn't have that problem last year. Still I'm OK with the Artest deal.

About the Live Game Chat melt down:

Randy Michaels should fly in today from Chicago and fire everybody. Everybody!

OK, the first time it happened was a surprise. Let's get to the bottom of this, boys. The second time, well, I guess our fixes didn't work. Let's try it again and get it right this time. The third time, in a playoff game? Heads should roll.

Yes, somebody will say, but the wi-fi at Staples was just terrible last night. Well, it wasn't the first time. This was the third playoff game at Staples Center this season. It's been terrible. Not only that, but as terrible as it was, everyone else achieved a connection: Kevin Ding, the K-Bros, Dave McT, the Lakers Reporter. Maybe it's not a good idea to think the LAT can maintain a good enough chat connection and have a Plan B.

Oh, that's right. There was a Plan B. Austin K. hoisted the mantle and somewhere in the 1st Q established a Cover It Live chat, after some of us started our own in the Pre-Game thread. Then, just before halftime, POOF!! It was gone. Never to return. Technical difficulties. Yeah, right.

Hello! Remember MySpace? It was the bomb, until along came Facebook. There was no mass exodus when the K-Bros left. Virtually everybody stayed here. We're good, loyal customers.

There's still one more chance to get it right on Friday night. We'll show up to be with our peeps. But after the Championship Parade in June, assuming there is one, we'll have all summer to establish a reliable alternative if we have to.

The LAT was first-to-market in LA with this wonderful experience. Those in charge of protecting the brand have some answering to do. Not just to Randy Michaels, but to the Times' loyal customers.

Now paging Bitter, party of 100's. Bitter, your table is ready.

Doubters, trolls, haters and sportswriters, today's your day to eat ALL the negative words spewed about the World Champions these last 5 days. Chow down suckas.

Meanwhile, I'm buying me an Artest jersey.

GO LAKERS ! ! ! ! !

Damn it, I love this team!

Mark G,

re: your posting from yesterday pre-game. Is Garry Vitti the Master of
Sinanju? :)

Mark G.
I like Eddie Jones too. I even bought his hard to find Lakers #6 jersey.

About the Thunder. Ibaka will look good in a Laker uniform. I heard Phil like's him.

NOW THAT'S LAKER BASKETBALL BABY!!!!!!!!!!!

Celtics and Cavaliers both wrapped their 1st round series yesterday (Tuesday), but they dont play their 2nd round series until Saturday??

Why is there such a long (3-day) break between the series?? So that Queen Crab can rest his sore elbow?? Well played Darth Stern, well played!!

Some post game comments:

-- gotta admit I was one nervous sumabitch before this game.. But I knew it... the thunder couldn't handle REAL playoff pressure.. Too inexperienced

-- yes kobe shut down westbrook with a bad knee bad ankle and 9 fingers.. I keep tellin u westbrook aint THAT good.. Its ALL dfish.. And yes that was the ball game

-- artest also shut down durant like white on rice.. Did u see that man get up for the slam!! Its gotta be the plantar fascitus.. He must be savin himself for the crab.. Never lose faith in ron ron.. not in a 7 game series.. And not after just his first playoff series with us

-- after 100 years in the league dfish still is incapable of throwing the ball down low.. how many damn times did dfish botch an easy pass to the post? I counted 4 last nite.. He doesn't even wait for bynum to get his position and zaps it in with no touch.. This guy kills us in a multitude of ways

-- and finally can't close this post without giving a big shot out to stern.. THANK YOU STERN.. We got every single important call in the first quarter which led to our run.. Yes dare I say it was the refs? Didn't I rant and rave in a previous post its the REFS that determine the AGGRESSORS? Isn't the game so much easier when u get the calls? How can the same two teams lose by 20 one night and win by 30 the next??!! Just jump onboard anytime u like? The proof was in the pudding last nite.. Don't play dumb.. Stern was in full effect... Lend me your ears!


That was beautiful last night! That was what we've been waiting for, the Championship caliber team, the Championship Heart and Intensity! I hope the rest of the playoffs contenders were watching, watch out bec. the REAL Champs are baaaaaaaack!

No lose situation for the Thunder!!! Of course they would like to have the upset. But, realistically, they didn't expect to win it all this year. Yet, the Lakers have to make another road trip to Loud City. Not an easy place to win. But ultimately, the Lakers will move on.
It's been a great learning curve for the Thunder. Oklahoma City is a great place for the franchise. The future is bright.

People will talk about Kobe's defense on Westbrook, which was great, but what I was most impressed with that WE ACTUALLY LOOKED LIKE THE LAKERS ON OFFENSE!

In all seriousness, I remember watching the game and said aloud to myself, "Wow. We actually look like the Lakers. We're running the offense."

Can we keep doing this? I sure hope so.

We did the obvious: Ball movement, player movement, inside-out basketball, AND Ron Artest attacking the net instead of chucking up threes.

Artest seems to play better on offense when he's being contested by some player. He's the anti-Ariza in that regard. Ariza? You kick it out to him for an open three? Swish!

Artest? Clank.

But you give Thriller the ball 12 feet from the net and enough room for a couple dribbles, then all you see is bodies of various people wearing the wrong jersey flying into the hardwood and the Lakers' score improving by two points.

I think we may have found "the moment," that same moment we found in Game Seven against the Rockets last year. This year it was Game Five versus the Thunder/Zombie Sonics.

I hope so, because the Lakers I saw last night played smarter and better than any other team (Western or Eastern Conference) presently in the playoffs.

I could get used to this.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!!

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

GO LAKERS!!!!

Wow. Just wow. The Lakers came out smokin' and never let up. Talk about a statement game. Message delivered.

Every Laker...every single one...played like a champion. And not just for a quarter, but for 48 minutes. And Kobe was the one with his pedal to the metal. Man, did he ever show Westbrook who's really in charge.

Artest? Not just shut down Durant (again), but also scored inside and out.
Bynum? Truly beastly. Anybody who wants to trade this guy is nuts.
Pau? GasHard, baby. Didn't settle for the 8-ft hook, but spun and drove to the hoop, rebounded, passed, blocked shots. Ole!
Fisher? Competed hard, and showed he can hit shots when he doesn't have to guard the super quick guards.
Lamar? Defended and rebounded well, and I predict he'll be a beast in OKC now that he woke up.
The bench? Held the lead and played good, aggressive defense.

All in all, just what we needed. And I'll tell you something else that I haven't seen written or mentioned anywhere. This game showed that the Lakers are in fact QUICKER (not faster) than the Thunder...when they want/need to be. You heard that right...quicker. As in hand speed, for example. They repeatedly befuddled both Durant and Westbrook, as well as the other Thunder, with lightning quick steals, touches, and outright blocks. And they spun and cut quicker off the entry pass (FINALLY!) than the Thunder could , and got to blocks and intimidating blocking positions (Kobe on Westbrook) in situations when the Thunder looked like they had a sure layup/dunk.

THAT, my amigos, is going to be in the heads of the Thunder on Friday. They now know that our guys have jets too, and they can turn them on when it's all on the line. That's a big deal. Watch for them to be more tentative on drives. Watch for them to hurry (and miss) more shots.

This was more than just one good game. It showed who the real top dogs are...still.

This was a great TEAM victory. The Lakers came out strong, five guys bringing energy and aggression.
On defense, there was aggressive help, strong double teams and great rotation. Durant and Westbrook saw a ton of help defenders, bigs blocking their path and smaller guys swiping at the ball and getting in their face. As I said before the game, the young role players disappeared in a big, intense road playoff game.
On offense it was a perfectly spaced floor, with the ball moving, guys cutting and easy shots opening for everyone. It was passing up the 3’s for better shots.
Most important on offense, they seemed to find a way to way to get the most out of a banged up Bryant. A passive, deferring Bryant won’t get it done. Asking a limited Kobe to take over games doesn’t work. Last night he was an AGGRESSOR and facilitator, no deferring. He moved, he cut, he drove, he CREATED and he took good shots. He opened the floor up for other guys.
For the first time since Kobe’s injuries stared mounting, the Lakers seemed to find an approach, as a team, that can give them a shot at repeating. They need to watch film of this game and see what they can do together, and go out play with this intensity and unselfishness every night.
This blog often seems to more about individuals than about the team. Many posters have guys they love on the team and guys they hate, and that is what we hear about over and over again. Last night showed that isn’t what it is about. It is about intense TEAM effort. With that kind of effort Bynum had a great game, Gasol had a great game, Artest had his best game by far, Fisher looked good out there, and Bryant played a great overall game and was clearly the leader on this team. A great team effort makes everybody look good. It isn’t Fisher vs. Brown or Gasol vs. Bynum or Kobe vs. the world. It’s the Lakers vs. the Thunder. All the rest is just a distraction.

Welcome back Lakers !! Where have you been for the past couple months ?? The score did not make the difference. It was the victory and how the team played solid basketball and the bench kept the score even. Let's do it one more time.

Hobbit, are we talking Chiun here?

I've actually read more than a few of the Destroyer books but it's been years. I thought they were pretty entertaining. Some of the humor had me laughing out loud. There's not a perfect fit here but if Kobe is Remo, then wouldn't Tex be the Master of Sinanju? (I can totally see Tex hitting Kobe with something if he got out of line) However, since you are the Martial Arts guy I'd defer to your judgment in this particular matter.

Despite everything, trolls will show up today. Why? Because they're trolls. They're compulsive creatures of envy.

Everyone, prepare your eggs and rotten tomatoes!

I'm curious to see how these fetid little monsters try to spin last night's game into something that we should be ashamed of.

Yeah, right. Last night rocked!

What do we play for? RINGS!!!

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

GO LAKERS!!!

- and finally can't close this post without giving a big shot out to stern.. THANK YOU STERN.. We got every single important call in the first quarter which led to our run.. Yes dare I say it was the refs? Didn't I rant and rave in a previous post its the REFS that determine the AGGRESSORS? Isn't the game so much easier when u get the calls? How can the same two teams lose by 20 one night and win by 30 the next??!! Just jump onboard anytime u like? The proof was in the pudding last nite.. Don't play dumb.. Stern was in full effect... Lend me your ears!


Posted by: yellofever | April 28, 2010 at 08:18 AM
-------------------------------------------------------------

Yes, I agree! Officiating dictates the outcome. Maybe it's not the refs favoring one over the other but if they're not allowing one team to play with their strength then they have no chance of winning. The Lakers wanted to be physical with the Thunder but were not allowed on game 4 and allowed on game 5.

yellofever,

The refs actually allowed us to be aggressive last night... and the result was beautiful basketball.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!

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

GO LAKERS!!!

Personal gripe: Laker fans, when you lose you blame the Ref's. When you win, you never bring up officiating!!! The Thunder players and fans have showned more maturity. Not once have I heard a player or fan belly-ache about the officiating!!! Laker faithful, stop whinning/crying/belly-aching!! It gets old!!!

Rick,

"When you win, you never bring up officiating!!!"

Ummm... when I last checked we there were three posts noting that the refs finally called the game fairly.

SHOO!!!! Go away, troll!!! Scurry on, now!

What do we play for? RINGS!!!!

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

GO LAKERS!!!!

Rick (aka self-loathing troll),

"The Thunder players and fans have showned more maturity. Not once have I heard a player or fan belly-ache about the officiating!!!"

Would you complain if you had received 42 more freethrows over two games? And more freethrows in EVERY game of the first four games of the sereies? Duh.

Go choke to death on your own vomit.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!

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

GO LAKERS!!!!

Ok, one last Prop, the team played great, but the Staples fans showed up finally. It reminded me of that Game 5 I was at v. the Kings. I don't know if was the regulars who were at the game or a different crowd but they did a nice job of being loud. That energy had to pump up the Lakers.

The Lakers finally showed up and played like the REAL Lakers not the impostors in game 4. However the REAL question is why not playing like that to end the series ASAP and allow the injured players time to heal and rest?
Having said that, obviously the Lakers played totally different than the previous 4 games; from active defense to picking their spots for good shots. Kobe's defense on Westbrook was monumental in the great win; Westbrook was more efficient than Durant with his speed that left the Lakers in the dust the first 4 games. Also the rule allows 8 secs for the offense team to move the ball past midcourt and the Lakers used to nonchalantly walk the ball upcourt using all 8 secs thus left only 16 secs for scoring.
That was changed in game 5, they pushed the ball and had more time to score. Only 2, 3 secs more seem insignificant however that caused their offense to be more efficient since it also gave the defense less time. Great game all around, now that the Lakers have found a formula, will they employ it in game 6?

BEDO/Tom Daniels,

You both are correct, sirs!

We won this game because TEAM BASKETBALL! That's when we're the best! Team basketball!

Let's keep this up!

What do we play for? RINGS!!!

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

GO LAKERS!!!!

Mark G,

you wrote:

Hobbit, are we talking Chiun here?

I've actually read more than a few of the Destroyer books but it's been years. I thought they were pretty entertaining. Some of the humor had me laughing out loud. There's not a perfect fit here but if Kobe is Remo, then wouldn't Tex be the Master of Sinanju? (I can totally see Tex hitting Kobe with something if he got out of line) However, since you are the Martial Arts guy I'd defer to your judgment in this particular matter.


my response: Sadly there isn't a perfect fit. In truth, Chiun would be MJ.
However, MJ never played for the Lakers. You could make the argument
for Tex, but Tex doesn't have the whole *fixer-upper* thing going. Since
I quoted with the "made whole", I went with Garry Vitti.

Those books were great easy reading. Some of my favorite moments:

Book 1 [ I believe ]: They're training at an amusement park. Up on the ferris
wheel. When Chiun tells Remo what they're going to do, Remo says, "Oh God"
Chiun responds, "Concentrate! No time for prayer!"

One of the latter books: Remo has been captured by the *evil* [ Celtics ? ]
doers. Chiun comes looking for him, crumpling the 2 ton steel doors as if
they were paper. "WHO HAS MY CHILD?"

Great Stuff!

Mark G,

I don't think the crowd was loud enough, at least not in the lower bowl.

Not enough fans wearing Laker colors.

Too many fans leaving for the exits before the game was finally over.

I can't believe someone would pay hundreds of dollars for tickets and then not stay to watch the entire game--whatever the outcome. That makes no sense to me. It's like, "Really? Really?"

What do we play for? RINGS!!!

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

GO LAKERS!!!

i never want to hear any more inside-outside talk out of phil, pau or dfish... EVER AGAIN... it starts with kobe and it ends with kobe..

and yes i agree jonk.. it was just beautiful to watch... a sight to behold.. kobe initiated the offense broke down the defense and created for *EVERYBODY*.


*
FINISH THEM WITHOUT MERCY FRIDAY LAKERS – BANDWAGON
X, X, X, 13, 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 5, 3, 2, 1, HIT IT LAKER TOM PARADE TIME
*
(01) ADRIAN PALOMAR – OWNER - Mamba24 can we please start,finish them without mercy bandwagon.I really cant wait until friday when my Lakers will kick this overhype thunder ass again.Lakers all the way baby!!!
(02) TEAMN – DRIVER - Finish this and roll on, baby!
(03) JOVBATZ44 – RIDING SHOTGUN - !" Adrian Palomar, I'm with you brother on the "Finish Them Without Mercy Bandwagon"!!!!!!!! Larry, let's do this brother!!!!! and yes, where is NINOY?????????LOL The "Switch is officially ON". It may be too early tell, but I can sense it. We got Kobe Bryant, and you've got none. Kobe is brutal in close out games. Remember Denver last year? Orlando? "SHOW NO MERCY
THERE WON'T BE ANY GAME 7. None my friends, none.

(04) #4 – KEEPER OF DYNASTY 4 & KOBE’S 4 RINGS - Nothing like home cooking. That said, I think this closes out in the Blunderdome. The Blunder haven't had to deal with an elimination before, I think they succumb to their own pressure and inexperience to adjust.
(05) KOBE81PTS – SGT AT ARMS - Please repeat this performance in game 6 and this series is over!!!!!!
(06) ILOVEKOBE33 – REFEREE - it was a great game from the start!
when they play like this there unstoppable!
kobe is the best player in the NBA
(07) JEFE1010 – REVIEW OFFICIAL - Great win Lakers - take care of business on Friday night!
(08) CORNER –J – ENFORCER - Oh, the humanity! The Thunder go down in flames. Hey, where are all the trolls? Come back, you punks, and let's hear how the Lakers are too old, too slow, and dead in the road now. Durant the best player in basketball??? Hahahaha. Nobody on the Lakers can stop Westbrook? Looks to me like Kobe punked him all night long. The Thunder are the next dynasty? More like die-nasty, stomped into the ground by the WORLD CHAMPION LOS ANGELES LAKERS. Never underestimate the heart of a champion, punks.
(09)CHICNSTU – GAME ANNOUNCER - That was an amazing display of team ball. Not only on offense but defense too, we played 48 minutes for the first time this season. I want more if that PLEASE!
(10) ALI – ALTERNATE REFEREE - The Sleeping Giant has awaken!!!! Finally and I hope they stay awake throughout the playoff series.
(11) ROBYN – ORDER RESTORER - Okay, order has finally been restored in Lakerland. Everyone can relax now and have a good night sleep!
(12) LAKERLADY – L.O.’S NUTRITIONIST - Sweet win. Lakers played great from start to finish. PJ did a great job letting Kobe guard Westbrook. DFish played scrappy D; Ron was all over the court and the two bigs were great. Lakers 'stayed thirsty', my friends. One more W to get this job done and then, NEXT!!!!GET IT DONE ON FRIDAY, GUYS!!!
(13) BENJAMIN - Kobe's manner makes it very clear. The manner of Kobe's teammates makes it clear. He's no longer ****ing around. This is some serious ish for everybody. The metagame is over. They're in the moment now. Game 6 oughta be interesting.
(14) JEANETTE - I agree with Kenny Smith, it does not matter how you win and how many wins it takes you to win a series, it is all about advancing to the next round and finally to the FINALS. Let us finish this in game 6. GO LAKERS!
(15) Nemaia Faletogo - As I've said on the game 4 game chat, the Lakers would respond and they did last night. When they play as they did last night, especially on defense, these Lakers are unbeatable in a 7 game series.
(16) TROY - Yes, the win was great, but I'm not satisfied, and I'm still concerned. The Lakers MUST win game 6 in order to be rested and healthy for a very good Utah team. No more of the disrespect for the Game I say in game 5; all that missing fts and layups BS. Do not go into your shells just because you're in Oklahoma, Lakers. Play hard, and end this damned thing already. We have a long way to go, and the road is difficult.
(17) CALIPHILOSOPHER - am looking forward to seeing how the OKC crowd reacts for game 6. As Derek Fisher said at halftime of game 3 (maybe it was 4; I think it was 3), the crowd, with their energy, makes you want to play your best (no matter if they are for you or against you). It should be a fantastic game on Friday.
(18) J24(LADY JEM24) - That was beautiful last night! That was what we've been waiting for, the Championship caliber team, the Championship Heart and Intensity! I hope the rest of the playoffs contenders were watching, watch out bec. the REAL Champs are baaaaaaaack!
(19) KEIFO - NOW THAT'S LAKER BASKETBALL BABY!!!!!!!!!!!
(20) MAMBA24 – IT AINT OVER TILL MIKE T SAYS IT’S OVER.
(21) MTI312 - Just enjoy the awakening and EXPECT them to keep it up and not worry.
(22)

Finally!

Huh. Weird. Where's the little megalomaniac lieutenant this morning? Oh, right. SILENT. Probably penning some poetic drivel on one of his other unread blogs.

Thanks for waking up, Lake Show. I had too many drinks watching that game last night, and I loved every minute of it.

Go Lake Show!

Since I don't have cable anymore, I didn't catch the game.

Interesting articles about Kobe imprint on the game. He only took 9 shots?

That didn't prevent him from playing defense. I still say the guy is injured.

Let's face it...this is not a championship season if Kobe is injured.

If Gasol and Bynum have to lead the way offensively...that's good for nothing but 500 ball.

Win one lose one. That's 500 ball, right?

mike t.

Laker Fan-

Good win last nite but at the end of the day you are still struggling to get out of the first round. More games means more minutes and more risk of injuries. But if history means anything then the Lakers should win this series. Which brings me to todays triva question.

Todays Trivia Question ...

Lakers are I believe 17-1 after winning game 5 of a series that was tied 2-2. When was the only time they went on to lose and who beat them? (Let me know if you need a hint!)

That's what I'm talking about.


Play of the game belongs to Ron Artest getting up for the most important slam of his young Laker career.


Big shout out to the bench for bringing the hustle and passion they need to come with every night. Not as impressive statistically as other games we've seen from the bench, but we didn't get out played. Nice effort.


Bynum had another break out game, still would liek to see this type of intensity for every quarter of every game (rest of the team, too), but he played big. Sometimes our bigs don't and he played with every inch of size and muscle he possesses.


Kobe was awesome, much will be said about Phil switching him over to Westbrook and how it changed the dynamic of the game, but Kobe brought the Olympic-style defense he played two summers ago and it showed. It also bled over to the rest of the team. I've said it before and I'll say it again. We need Kobe Bryant to be on the court, but not JUST for his offense, he brings SO MUCH to every facet of our team. When he's playing smoothly and is gellin' on the court with his boys, it's a thing of beauty. Getting those calls helped, too.


Phil showed us he can still pull a rabbit out of his gigantic magic hat. Not only did he change the dynmaic of the game by putting Bryant on Westbrook, he drilled into his team the idea of a pump fake. We saw a smarter Laker team than we've seen since February. We saw Fish using his strength to get to the rim, and then dish as Thunder players swarmed him in the air. We saw Artest get his butt off the 3 point line and play in the paint, making plays and dunking on Durantula. We saw a nice synergy between Gasol and Bynum.


Gasol. Was. Epic. He scored, he rebounded, he defended, he assisted and he made all the right plays. some of those bounce passes to Bynum we're so subtle I thought he lost the ball a time or two, only to see 'Drew rise up and throw one down on some hapless Thunder player.


Now we need to finish it on the road. It would be good to send a message to whomever our next opponent is: We can take this Lake-Show on the road. We can compete at the highest level in the loudest building against maybe the most athletic team in the playoffs (Atlanta's right there, too).


Besides, we've driven the stake into the vampire's heart, now we just need to cut off it's head and stuff it's mouth with garlic. What better place than Oklahoma?

I'd also like to say that Stu Lantz is one great broadcaster. He's bridged the gap between the great Laker teams of our recent past and has always been a class act. We take him and his wisdom for granted.

Congratulations fellow Laker fans, we made it. We planted the seed that will guide our players on future competitions. I hope our successful bandwagon would guide us that we would not resort to name calling or labeling among us after all, we are all Laker fans with diversified behavioral patterns.

I thought the return of the prodigal brother, Mike T., would be a distraction to our goal, he came as a spy of Russell W. while also a fence sitter lurking in our midst with his pronouncement of "let us see what will happen tonight." Jon K was right the enemies from within namely: the Kings troll, Sonnybelfast and Mike "Kwame" T. were good omen. On the other hand, Mike was also right with his observation that Kobe is the enigmatic player that will feed the dynamic duo to stardom, you need the three and the superb role of other players to advance in these playoffs.

As a group, we don't win ball games on the blog with mere words eye view, good or bad; concern or always glass half full, it is our solidarity that will break barriers. This how the Polish people felt on their solidarity when they broke away from their Communist leaders in late 80's. This is how the Russian people felt when they stopped their enemies at their border in two wars. Well with us we are mere multitude of fans what can we contribute? We are often associated with Hollywood texting or tweeting while watching a Laker game. That is the face of LA on the screen and in other home court we are the "beat La crowd". They ignored that there are million Laker followers living in every nook and streets in the Southland and in all states of the union. Yes, we are known as the laid-back fans of NBA but the seed we planted on our "just win bandwagon" heeds a teachable lesson better than Zen motivation because it is the voice coming from the fans.We are part of the Lakers as such, the whole body will be healthy only when all organs are functioning well. Most of all, no matter how loud the Oklahomans with their new found OK Show, it is the Laker fans laid-back squeaky voice that prevailed. We did not shout to the top of our lungs, just planted a seed of doubt on the blog specifically addressed to Russell's head with a resounding message: "You don't have enough force to take over the City that reared you up."

To all media here and outside, from now on don't ever underestimate the power of the Laker fans.

Also, thanks Staples for BRINGIN' IT!!!!!


Right from the tip the building was rocking. It's like we're in the playoffs or something!

From Bill Plaschke

"That's what happened first here, Bryant shoving Westbrook on the game's first inbounds play and essentially mauling him throughout the first quarter, climbing into the kid's head and rendering him useless."

Now that is funny and I believe every word. It brings back memories of the Olympic Gold game against Spain and Pau Gasol. Kobe flattened Gasol off a screen in the first quarter. LOL! I guess Westbrook still has things to learn from a hardcore NBA Champion.

LOL!

mike t.

@mamba24


Throw me on the FINISH THEM bandwagon, puh-leaze! Can you put me down as 'Sub-Zero...wins...Fatality!'


It would be sweet if Lamar had Sub Zero's freeze bomb.

mike t

just caught up in some blog reading from yesterday.. very clever postings.. i can dig it.. dont know u but good to have the legendary and prodigal son back..

btw just an FYI but not a single day went by while you were away when these guys werent raving about you


Bryant did a good job slowing Westbrook down. Equally important, though, was his teammates help. Typical was a play where Westbrook got into the open floor, Kobe slowed him, and Shannon Brown came from the backside to take the ball. By slowing Westbrook down, Kobe allowed help to come and he got a ton of it.

Similarly, Artest had lots of help on Durant. He played him tight and toward the help, and most times that Durant found some daylight, someone like Bynum quickly showed up to block it out.

That is how you stop good guys - tough man on man defense and plenty of help.

Hobbit, as soon as I posted I realized you were alluding to Chiun's awesome healing powers. I should have seen it right off the bat but like I said, it's been years since I've read them.

I don't think I've read as many as you have but one passage always comes to my mind involving Remo dispatching members of a neo-Nazi group. I'll just say that he was quite creative in how he did it. Very funny stuff, dark, but funny.

@Edwin Gueco

Word. You shouldn't underestimate the power of those who bleed purple and gold.

LIKE FINE ART. . .

--stand too close, and the brilliance cannot be fully appreciated
--pass judgment before the masterpiece is complete, and short-change the genius of the process

Nobody ever marvels at the canvas underneath the final presentation, but instead the magnificance of the finished product.

This postseason run of the Lakers is like Fine Art. Wait, just wait on it, and behold the beauty!

Mike


analysis Kobe, analysis Pau, Andrew, Ron, analysis Phil ... all good

GO LOUD, GO Lakers!


"I can't believe someone would pay hundreds of dollars for tickets and then not stay to watch the entire game--whatever the outcome. That makes no sense to me. It's like, "Really? Really?"'

As someone who has sat in the lower bowl and on the floor for Laker games, you're right. For some people it's about prestige. But as for me, when I sit there I scream my brains out no matter what. One time I was so lucky to sit right behind Lawrence Tanter and after the game he turned around and said to me and my friend "so did you enjoy the game?," pointedly referring to the fact we were screaming our heads off. Then he smiled and walked away. Gotta love it.

I thought Staples did a fair job of screaming for their team.

Great Victory last night!!

I have to give Phil credit for making some vital adjustments...........granted that these adjustments may have been the result of desperation but adjustments just the same.

1) The biggest adjustment to place Kobe on Westbrook ironically wasn't even Phil's decision............again Kobe showing his ability as the best player/coach in the business

2) Instead of Phil trying to control the outcome of the game by dictating it in terms of force feeding the post to players who are not stars but complimentary players.........Phil finally allowed his arrogance, hubris, control issues, or narcissism to subside and accepted his role around the star of this team.............This is how he did it

3) He allowed Kobe to be the aggessor as Kobe should ALWAYS be..........not necessarily to score but to take advantage of the defense..........note to Phil...........the other team's defense should dictate whether or not the ball goes into the post........NOT YOU PHIL! When Kobe is aggressive offensively he can take advantage of the defense because he draws so much attention........it doesn't matter as much if he is making or missing shots........just be in an aggressive mindset

4) Phil altered the triangle by setting down screens for Kobe, picks for Kobe curling in the lane and making Kobe the focal point of the offense...........what does this do? It forces the defense to make a choice or pick your poisen.........and most importantly it allows Kobe to make the decisions on the floor instead of Phil on the bench..........ironically you had the same result because Kobe only took 9 shots last night in 3 quarters verses the 10 shots in 3 quarters in game 4

What was the difference? Last night Kobe determined when and where Bynum and Gasol got shots based on how he was being played defensively........either by a direct assist or by a hockey assist. As a result Bynum and Gasol got easier shots which produced a higher shooting percentage for both.

In game 4 Phil tried to dictate how Gasol and Bynum got the ball by force feeding them which turned out to be disasterous.............I hope Phil has learned a lesson........but I doubt it.

LESSONS LEARNED (stat people)

1) Never judge Kobe by the stats! Kobe's impact on a game is never determined by stats because there is no stat to gauge his impact...........you have to watch the game. For instance Gasol had better stats last night..........but who had the greater impact?


P.S. Can anyone why Kobe isn't being criticized for only taking 9 shots last night as he was scorched for only taking 10 shots in game 4??

KOBE JUST DO THE RIGHT THANG:

Even though Kobe’s team mates contributed and scored more points than Kobe but the game ball belongs to none other than the Mamba King, Kobe, no ifs ands butts. It was Kobe’s leadership that was the key difference in game 5. Phil Jackson and staff should put together all the highlights of Kobe’s game from last night, to drive the point across to Kobe; that he does not have to huff and puff and take difficult shots; use arsenal of weapons at his disposal hand picked by GM and staff; the lithe, smooth, best teammate and best power forward in Laker history, Pau Gasol; the young upstart and future of laker franchise, the beast Bynum; the defensive enforcer Artest; Mr. Kloe and versatile Lamar; the aging rock Dfish and for sure rest of team to do all the heavy lifting. If, Kobe continues to play and lead like he did in game 5, then I see prosperous times for this Laker team. I must say, I even enjoyed the garbage time play as these moments have been slim picking.

Kobe listen to Zen, as I heard him in the huddle during the time out, Phil “Kobe don’t try to do too much” translates to manage your team mates.

mike tjust caught up in some blog reading from yesterday.. very clever postings.. i can dig it.. dont know u but good to have the legendary and prodigal son back.. btw just an FYI but not a single day went by while you were away when these guys werent raving about you Posted by: yellofever | April 28, 2010 at 09:00 AM
I Know I was. God The Intellect combined with modesty. Besides...'PEOPLE DON'T COME ON THIS BLOG, TO HEAR A NOBODY THE COME TO HEAR MIKE T, HE'S MIKE T. WHO THW HELL ARE WE" OH SWEET JESUS, HELP ME THE HUMANITY....ROFLMFAO!!
*
*
FINISH THEM WITHOUT MERCY FRIDAY LAKERS – BANDWAGON
X, X, X, 13, 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 5, 3, 2, 1, HIT IT LAKER TOM PARADE TIME
*
(01) ADRIAN PALOMAR – OWNER - Mamba24 can we please start,finish them without mercy bandwagon.I really cant wait until friday when my Lakers will kick this overhype thunder ass again.Lakers all the way baby!!!
(02) TEAMN – DRIVER - Finish this and roll on, baby!
(03) JOVBATZ44 – RIDING SHOTGUN - !" Adrian Palomar, I'm with you brother on the "Finish Them Without Mercy Bandwagon"!!!!!!!! Larry, let's do this brother!!!!! and yes, where is NINOY?????????LOL The "Switch is officially ON". It may be too early tell, but I can sense it. We got Kobe Bryant, and you've got none. Kobe is brutal in close out games. Remember Denver last year? Orlando? "SHOW NO MERCY
THERE WON'T BE ANY GAME 7. None my friends, none.
(04) #4 – KEEPER OF DYNASTY 4 & KOBE’S 4 RINGS - Nothing like home cooking. That said, I think this closes out in the Blunderdome. The Blunder haven't had to deal with an elimination before, I think they succumb to their own pressure and inexperience to adjust.
(05) KOBE81PTS – SGT AT ARMS - Please repeat this performance in game 6 and this series is over!!!!!!
(06) ILOVEKOBE33 – REFEREE - it was a great game from the start! when they play like this there unstoppable! kobe is the best player in the NBA
(07) JEFE1010 – REVIEW OFFICIAL - Great win Lakers - take care of business on Friday night!
(08) CORNER –J – ENFORCER - Oh, the humanity! The Thunder go down in flames. Hey, where are all the trolls? Come back, you punks, and let's hear how the Lakers are too old, too slow, and dead in the road now. Durant the best player in basketball??? Hahahaha. Nobody on the Lakers can stop Westbrook? Looks to me like Kobe punked him all night long. The Thunder are the next dynasty? More like die-nasty, stomped into the ground by the WORLD CHAMPION LOS ANGELES LAKERS. Never underestimate the heart of a champion, punks.
(09)CHICNSTU – GAME ANNOUNCER - That was an amazing display of team ball. Not only on offense but defense too, we played 48 minutes for the first time this season. I want more if that PLEASE!
(10) ALI – ALTERNATE REFEREE - The Sleeping Giant has awaken!!!! Finally and I hope they stay awake throughout the playoff series.
(11) ROBYN – ORDER RESTORER - Okay, order has finally been restored in Lakerland. Everyone can relax now and have a good night sleep!
(12) LAKERLADY – L.O.’S NUTRITIONIST - Sweet win. Lakers played great from start to finish. PJ did a great job letting Kobe guard Westbrook. DFish played scrappy D; Ron was all over the court and the two bigs were great. Lakers 'stayed thirsty', my friends. One more W to get this job done and then, NEXT!!!!GET IT DONE ON FRIDAY, GUYS!!!
(13) BENJAMIN - Kobe's manner makes it very clear. The manner of Kobe's teammates makes it clear. He's no longer ****ing around. This is some serious ish for everybody. The metagame is over. They're in the moment now. Game 6 oughta be interesting.
(14) JEANETTE - I agree with Kenny Smith, it does not matter how you win and how many wins it takes you to win a series, it is all about advancing to the next round and finally to the FINALS. Let us finish this in game 6. GO LAKERS!
(15) Nemaia Faletogo - As I've said on the game 4 game chat, the Lakers would respond and they did last night. When they play as they did last night, especially on defense, these Lakers are unbeatable in a 7 game series.
(16) TROY - Yes, the win was great, but I'm not satisfied, and I'm still concerned. The Lakers MUST win game 6 in order to be rested and healthy for a very good Utah team. No more of the disrespect for the Game I say in game 5; all that missing fts and layups BS. Do not go into your shells just because you're in Oklahoma, Lakers. Play hard, and end this damned thing already. We have a long way to go, and the road is difficult.
(17) CALIPHILOSOPHER - am looking forward to seeing how the OKC crowd reacts for game 6. As Derek Fisher said at halftime of game 3 (maybe it was 4; I think it was 3), the crowd, with their energy, makes you want to play your best (no matter if they are for you or against you). It should be a fantastic game on Friday.
(18) J24(LADY JEM24) - That was beautiful last night! That was what we've been waiting for, the Championship caliber team, the Championship Heart and Intensity! I hope the rest of the playoffs contenders were watching, watch out bec. the REAL Champs are baaaaaaaack!
(19) KEIFO - NOW THAT'S LAKER BASKETBALL BABY!!!!!!!!!!!
(20) MAMBA24 – IT AINT OVER TILL MIKE T SAYS IT’S OVER.
(21) MTI312 - Just enjoy the awakening and EXPECT them to keep it up and not worry.
(22) FAITH – DEFENSE GURU - This is how you do it. We are dominating like the world's best dominatrix. Who are we?! 16 championships LOS ANGELES LAKERS! Boo-yeah. Championship ball. OKC eat our dust! All. About. The. Love. GO Lakers! 3 down, 13 to go!
(23) JAMIE SWEET – SUB-ZERO…WINS..FATALITY - Throw me on the FINISH THEM bandwagon, puh-leaze! Can you put me down as 'Sub-Zero...wins...Fatality!' It would be sweet if Lamar had Sub Zero's freeze bomb. Now we need to finish it on the road. It would be good to send a message to whomever our next opponent is: We can take this Lake-Show on the road. We can compete at the highest level in the loudest building against maybe the most athletic team in the playoffs (Atlanta's right there, too). Besides, we've driven the stake into the vampire's heart, now we just need to cut off it's head and stuff it's mouth with garlic. What better place than Oklahoma?
(24) EDWIN GUECO – JUDGE - To all media here and outside, from now on don't ever underestimate the power of the Laker fans.
(25) LAKER MIKE -- LIKE FINE ART. . .--stand too close, and the brilliance cannot be fully appreciated --pass judgment before the masterpiece is complete, and short-change the genius of the process Nobody ever marvels at the canvas underneath the final presentation, but instead the magnificance of the finished product. This postseason run of the Lakers is like Fine Art. Wait, just wait on it, and behold the beauty!
(26)


Last night the Lakers clearly got The Stern Advantage. Lets hope on Friday the Lakers don't get The Stern Package!!!
I just want the refs to stay out of it. Btw, I love how Odom plays like should (when we're either up or down by 20).

Did anyone see lebron fake that elbow injury, only cuz he bricked that left handed freebie. Also noticed when the game was over, james was just going to walk off without shaking hands again. Not till someone tapped him did he turn around to thank the Bulls players.


>>>Did Ron's ability to Dunk in traffic have anything to do with his haircut?
>>>Maybe it was just that little extra weight that was holding him back?

Actually, the Ron-Ron transformation makes perfect sense to me and I even blogged about it after game 3. It just took 1 extra game for PJ to make the move I suggested then.

When the Thunder switched Kevin Durant onto Kobe, that left Artest guarded by someone smaller and weaker than him. It just makes sense to make him attack more.

ABOUT TIME!!!

We Laker fanatics have been whining for months to see this level of effort. I am glad it is still available.

Hopefully the Laker players will replay this effort and take the rest of the playoffs as seriously EVERY GAME!!

Sorry Tom Daniels,

Kobe had help but he did a great job, one on one on Westbrook too. Just 2 examples for you, fast break for Westbrook, Kobe chases him down and fakes a block, it throw Westbrook totally off. There were several times Westbrook tried to go to the hole and Kobe's one-on-one defense prevented it without help. Give credit where it's due man, stop trying to minimize Kobe's defensive effort, he did more than just slow Westbrook down.

Great team win!!!
Go Lakers!!!

Repost for Mamba24

Good morning,

About that WITHOUT MERCY BAND WAGON. I'm in.

If you had...
The Lakers season ending in April...
Kobe applying for Medicare coverage in May...
And Ron Artest with a one-way bus ticket back to Houston...
You're OUT!

Go Lakers!

Posted by: Rick Friedman | April 28, 2010 at 07:11 AM

Kobe does a great job defending smaller shooters. Kobe on Westbrook reminded me of the Lakers/Sixers finals.
Cut the head off and it's over.

The Outlaw,

"Where's the little megalomaniac lieutenant this morning? Oh, right. SILENT. Probably penning some poetic drivel on one of his other unread blogs. "

No. He's here making excuses for the Lakers eventual demise after not seeing the game.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!

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

GO LAKERS!!!

Kobe was beastly on Westbrook last night.
And by that I mean, Fishers leadership, his speeches, his .4, his Suge knight look is the real problem.

Here's something I want all you people who are both Shaq lovers & Kobe haters (Mike T, are you listening)?

I'd like to draw a parallel between the 2004 Detroit finals and this series... or at least games 4 and 5 of this series.

In the `04 series, Detroit really focused on denying Shaq the ball and shutting him down. You could argue that Ben Wallace outplayed him for the series. And in interviews after games when he only got 16 shots or 14 shots, Shaq would demand that his teammates get him the ball more. That was the only solution he could see... get me the ball more. Forget the fact that he was turning the ball over more than his usual clip, or that he was getting outrebounded by Ben Wallace, the only possible solution was to get him the ball.

The SLKH crowd would whine that the lost finals was because Kobe was greedy and didn't give the ball to Shaq enough. But the reality of the loss was mostly down to Karl Malone getting injured in the Western Conference Finals, after outplaying Yao Ming, Kevin Garnett, and Tim Duncan in 3 consecutive series. The fact is that Kobe shot more because Detroit did a good job of denying Shaq the ball.

So now jump forward to 2010. Oklahoma City changes their strategy and starts really obsessing on stopping Kobe. So in game 4, Kobe only got 10 shots and the Lakers lost.

So did Kobe complain about his teammates not getting him the ball enough?

Nope.

Kobe looked around and looked for a problem he could help with. He took on defending Russell Westbrook. And for a second game in a row, he only got a few shots off. But he got lots of assists to his teammates, and he put in the effort to stop the team from being hurt in another way.

And in the after game interviews, Kobe very succinctly pointed this out - he's happy to rely on his teammates if that's what the opponent is giving him. Shaq would never ever ever have said that after a game where he only got 9 shots.

I know this will never persuade any of the believers in the "Kobe drove Shaq out of town" theory, but think about this...

who's the selfish player?

and who's the team player?

mti312, I also thought Kobe did a good job of using his teammates ON DEFENSE. To his teammates credit, they were very active on the screens against Kobe tonight.

A word of caution though....Durant will probably shoot lights out next game. You could almost count on it.

>>>Now paging Bitter, party of 100's. Bitter, your table is ready.
>>>
>>>Doubters, trolls, haters and sportswriters, today's your day to eat ALL the
>>>negative words spewed about the World Champions these last 5 days. Chow
>>>down suckas.

YES YES YES!!!!!

It's awesome when I log in in the morning looking to smack down the doubters and I don't need to because it's already been done elegantly.

Magia32,

"Did anyone see lebron fake that elbow injury, only cuz he bricked that left handed freebie. Also noticed when the game was over, james was just going to walk off without shaking hands again."

I saw it, yeah.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!

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

GO LAKERS!!!

Mike T,

you wrote: Since I don't have cable anymore, I didn't catch the game.

Interesting articles about Kobe imprint on the game. He only took 9 shots?

That didn't prevent him from playing defense. I still say the guy is injured.

Let's face it...this is not a championship season if Kobe is injured.

If Gasol and Bynum have to lead the way offensively...that's good for nothing but 500 ball.

Win one lose one. That's 500 ball, right?

my response: So ... the Lakers are up 3-2. That's not .500 ball.

re: Cable. You should get DirecTV. The league pass has been extremely
educational to me and also allows for keeping tabs on villain who play in
the east.

re: Bynum & Gasol leading the way offensively. I think you're reading this
the wrong way. Allow me to paint a picture and see if it makes more sense.

Kobe is the driving force behind this team. Offensively & Defensively. We
run into problems when other team members forget their place/role and
try to usurp Kobe's position. The OKC have no 7-footers. It's sorta like
bringing a stick to a gun fight from OKC's perspective. You can win *IF*
the gun fighter doesn't know it's a fight and let's you get in close. Otherwise
he shoots you from 25 feet out and eats a hot dog for lunch. With mustard.

Pau is a top 3 PF in the world. From stats & skills & size & age. Bynum is a
large, somewhat skilled, gifted C. It would be foolish for the Lakers *NOT*
to take advantage of their size. It also allows Kobe to rest for the next
series.

With that being said, I don't care if the Lakers win by hook or by crook. I
only want them to win the whole thing in June.

re: Sir Spindly Shanks (aka Pau Gasol). Last year, the Lakers were winning
the whole thing regardless of who they played. Gasol played like a demon.
He needed to be validated at the highest level. He ran stronger C's off their
favorite spots. He fought for position. He played great basketball.

This year, if Bynum plays according to the Lakers game plan, we are going to
win it again. The game plan is: "he must play defense & rebound!"

Bynum playing C will allow Sir Spindly Shanks to play his natural position of
PF. His delicate frame won't take the same pounding and his bb IQ will make
a difference.

Both of these things are predicated upon Kobe directing the offense/defense
and everybody else following his lead. We run into problems when 2nd tier
players think they are better/more important than they are. Kobe's finger
is healed although arthritic.

re: Kobe. The jutting jaw is back. The glare is back. It's GO time!

Stick around. More good basketball is coming your way.

yellowfever,

we're raving our long lost prodigal brother because he provided us before delightful entertainment in comparing the calves of Kwame to the upper extremities of Chris Mihm. Who can imagined those detailed comparison? he's our court jester that relieved us from boredom. a unique fan who can rattle precise analysis without watching the ball game huh...mamba24 was right, we come here just to listen to this delusion of grandeur from nowhere. lol!

I told you so...


This game will be easssssyyyyy for the Lakers! INSIDE-OUT, they play the right way, it is easy!!!


Bynum and Gasol dominates, Fisher and Kobe stopped their jumpshots and look to pass inside everytime. I love the way Fish and Kobe not shooting many times in the game, just to look for inside pass.


A Bynum dunk is +4pts for the Lakers PLUS all the momentum for the Lakers. a Fisher jumpshot is +4pts for Thunder... PLUS all the momentum for Thunder...


I love Fisher in this game, because he looked to pass inside!!! He should do a better job though of passing it to Bynum, he always throw it almost out of bounds, so hard to catch..


Kobe on te other hand is the best passer to his bigs in the NBA. When he is focus on getting the ball to Bynum and Gasol, the Lakers are unstoppable. Kobe finds those two with ease and efficiency. I love Kobe Brynat when he plays like this!!! It is so much fun to watch. 13 pts only, but he was the big difference in the game. Bynum and Gasol dominance is a big result of Kobe's game.

Lakers should play like this the rest of the 2010 playoffs.


My Predictions: Champions Lakers!!!

Fan of the Mamba,

I had no intention of mimizing Kobe's defense. I thought he did a great job. Sometimes one on one and often with help.

I was just pointing out that the Lakers played great TEAM defense. They can't win with just Kobe playing great one on one defense.

As I said, the help couldn't have even come if Kobe hadn't slowed him down to begin with.

But Kobe can't win one on five. It's about team defense, and the Lakers had it last night.

Hey guys, I want to apologize for all the mishaps with the Chat, most lately during Game 5. I appreciate your patience and resilience as well as your willingness to do the chat on a thread. The communication breakdown was incredibly poor with my inability to get online to alert you guys as well as the desk's heavy workload contributing to the delay in getting up a thread and then not being able to run it correctly.

I'm following up with management for more discussion. But basically the problem on my end has been a combination with bad Internet and technical issues with Cover it Live. Thought I had an Internet connection, it was incredibly slow to load whenever I wanted to go to a site. That bad connection already in place,anytime I would load Cover it Live, it took very slow to launch and it would end up freezing.

I will keep you posted once I talk to management today, but one proposal they've listed is to use a different chat moderator. I'm thinking that on Thursday I may do a morning non-game chat and that could also serve as a test for people to sign up. It may require you guys to make new accounts because it's a different server, but I'll keep everyone posted here.

Again, my apologies for all this.

MM

kobe needs to lead with defense instead of offense. the proof was last night. it seems to also take the defensive load off of fish and open up his offensive game. if kobe averages 13 pts the rest of the playoffs but commits to defense like last night, lakers will win title.

Finally the Lakers played with pride focus and energy! Like Champions. They displayed some B-Ball IQ. When was the last time we actually blew somebody out the whole game? Putting Kobe on Westbrook was genious but shouldn't PJ be coming up with that idea. Give it to Mamba, he''l do anything to win. The Thunder really only has 2 scorers, Durant & Westbrook. When they have to go up againt a motivated Kobe & Artest 2 of the best defenders in the game that puts pressure on the likes of Green Thabo Kristic to carry the scoring load and they are not going to be able to do it consistently. How about pounding the ball inside! Our boys were throwing it down and pump faking putting Ibaka deep in the Popcorn machine with the salt & butter...Chick would love it! No block party tonight little men. The bench did its job too. The upstart Thunder was beginning to believe they would Shock The World but now they must realize the giant woke up. The thunder will play better at home but if the Lakers come with the same energy and focus in game six we will shut up those t shirt wearin Okies and move on.

As a warning to those who don't know Mike T., it is best not to engage heated arguments and endless debates like what we used to witnessing w/ hobbit and LT or else, we have nothing to talk anymore except their word tussles. It could also be dangerous to the camaraderie of the blog and the automatic posting feature of MM because it could drag mothers, children to the debate.

>>>Bynum? Truly beastly. Anybody who wants to trade this guy is nuts.

This is probably a sore topic to bring up...

but since you did...

Bynum has been very very good this series. Bear in mind that OKC doesn't have anyone as strong as him, so he might not look so beastly against Dwight Howard or Shaq (or even Kendrick Perkins).

But if he continues to play hard, he will either cement his place as a lifelong Laker...

or cement his worthiness to be traded for a top flight PG like Deron Williams or Chris Paul.

If Utah or New Orleans gets the top pick in the draft and drafts John Wall, then they might be willing to trade off one of their two dominating point guards (probably the higher paid one) for a dominating center like Bynum.

That would be the ONLY situation for which I'd consider trading Bynum.

BLOG CRUE
Great win last night. Truly a demonstration of our capabilities. I'd love to see the thuggets go down tonight.

Where is Lakers4Realz????? Have a great day nation!

Colorado loves our World Champion Lakers!

Mike T,

All that wonderful BasketBall knowledge and yet, you cant take advantage of the Vegas bookies? Not only should you be able to afford cable, you should be able to purchase your own NBA team and win multiple championships. OH well, Next time don't bet all your money on one game.

GO LAKERS!

LTLF,


INSIDE-OUT EVERYTIME.... Look to pass the ball inside first everytime, that is exactly what Fisher and Kobe did the whole game. THE MOMENETUM WAS WITH THE LAKERS THE WHOLE NIGHT ISN"T IT!!!


BIGGER BODY ON WESTBROOK! Westbrook can't get a field day like he does when Fiaher guards him.


I was right the game was going to be eassssyyyy!!!


Lakers play INSIDE-OUT again on game 6. The Thunder fans will be quiet for sure. The formula worked to its LEXUS perfection. Stu Lanz said, you got the FORNULA NOW, just keep using it and it is a W everytime.

>>>Huh. Weird. Where's the little megalomaniac lieutenant this morning? Oh,
>>>right. SILENT. Probably penning some poetic drivel on one of his other
>>>unread blogs.

OUT FREAKING STANDING!!!

(or maybe he's doing things that "intellectuals" do - like pouting about how wrong he is.)

INSIDE-OUT!!!

BOOZER, DUNCAN, SHAQ will be in foul trouble early.


LAKERS are CHAMPIONS!!!!

Oh Edwin,

you wound me so. :)

Artest looked comfortable playing within the offense, he was aggressive on offense, defense, and as a play maker. It was a good sight to see, since I always cringed whenever he is in the act of shooting.

Pau and Bynum are showing signs that they will be deadly once their on court chemistry heightens. They played beastly together.

Everyone played great team basketball last night. Now let's take care of business on Friday. They need all the rest they can get, especially the Old Savvy Dog that is Kobe Bean Bryant.

Bynum and Gasol, mixed with KOBE's passes!!! The perfect formula to win a Championship.


FINALS MVP! KOBE BRYANT!!!

WHAT DID YOU EXPECT
Life is a very funny thing they say, but it’s not funny for the boys from OK.
They sat on the bench after game 4 & clowned, came game 5 they got a Laker beat down
Can you help me I’m looking for Westbrook, That’s right Black Mamba gave you the Hook
And Princess Jimmy shame on you, Acting like you have an injury like Kobe too
Did you think that would make you seem more a Man, Fool you’re a Princess understand
Did that ouch on your elbow hurt, All right Princess go home and change your skirt
The announcers “OOOH Jimmy shot with his left hand”, Didn’t make the shot, Kobe can
Left hand, right hand it’s all the same, Kobe Bryant is the real master of the game
All the world were able to see, Kobe’s not just about offense, he’s also about “D”
Princess Jimmy you ought to be ashamed, blaming a hurt elbow for a bad game
Mangled fingers, bad back, strained thigh, Kobe’s still better than Princess Jimmy no lie
As for the team that can beat the Lakers, Suddenly I can’t find anybody in Vegas not 1 taker
Never underestimate the Champions will, Never underestimate Kobe & Phil
The synergy of this Blog yesterday was beautiful to see, that’s the way it always should be
So I’ll leave this note for you, We’re The Freaking Champion Lakers, Friday OK you’re thru.

Staples24,

you wrote: When he is focus on getting the ball to Bynum and Gasol, the Lakers are unstoppable. Kobe finds those two with ease and efficiency.

my response: You mean like in Game 4 where we got blown out? that is
exactly what he did in Game 4. Next time would you give a more complete
description of what happened?

Beautiful game. Lakers set the tempo from the opening tip. Thunder didn't have a shot, they had a scared look about them like a kid caught being bad and sent to the principals office.

This victory began and ended with Kobe Bryant, he not only established an excellent tempo and kept the effective inside-out game the Lakers operated last night, but he totally nullified any effect that Russell Westbrook had on the game. Not only was Russell totally ineffective, the Black Mamba struck early and the poison spread quickly, thoroughly and mercilessly.

Kevin Durant doesn't change his demeanor much, but you could see in his eyes that they weren't going to be able to compete at all, they were totally overwhelmed and outclassed.

The coach that makes the best adjustments in a series usually wins, and Phil showed why he is the winningest coach in NBA history last night.

C's troll who's living in the past with his username,

>>>More games means more minutes and more risk of injuries.

No. More games means more time for Kobe and Bynum to get back in sync with the team after missing a bunch of games with injuries.

Must be nice to play a 1-man team in the first round. Sorta like you & the Tragic and the Cadavaliers padded your win totals playing all those crappy leastern teams while the Lakers were toughening up playing quality teams that have better records than the C's every other night.

Have fun with the Cavs in the next round. I genuinely hope you beat them. Much as I'd like to see a Kobe-LeBron finals, I'd get much more joy watching the Lakers smack the green out of your team for 4 games like they bitch-slapped the Chunder last night.

I eagerly anticipate watching Paul Pierce writhing on the ground in faux pain... and then Ron Artest walking over and kicking him in the gut while he's down.

I will revel in watching slow old KG getting dominated by "soft" Pau Gasol

I will laugh every time Wrajon Wron-go dribbles around for 20 seconds trying to get past Kobe and then throws up a brick.

I will chuckle at Doc Rivers histrionics every time a call doesn't go his team's way.

I will smirk every time Sheed jacks up another brick 3, and I'll laugh when he gets thrown out of a game for trying to strangle Sasha Vujacic.

And the joy of winning another championship will be nicely seasoned by the mopey faces of Pierce and Garnett and Allen and Doc as their dream of another title dies on the parquet floor in game 4.

@STAPLES24, You're on a roll again brother! Now don't ruin it:-)

>>>Huh. Weird. Where's the little megalomaniac lieutenant this morning? Oh, >>>right. SILENT. Probably penning some poetic drivel on one of his other >>>unread blogs. OUT FREAKING STANDING!!! (or maybe he's doing things that "intellectuals" do - like pouting about how wrong he is.) Posted by: LongTimeLakerFan | April 28, 2010 at 09:42 AM

ROFLMAO!! BEHAVE LTLF...WAHAHHAHHAHAHA! OH THE HUMANITY!

And the joy of winning another championship will be nicely seasoned by the mopey faces of Pierce and Garnett and Allen and Doc as their dream of another title dies on the parquet floor in game 4. Posted by: LongTimeLakerFan | April 28, 2010 at 09:52 AM
THAT'S IT, THAT'S IT! I'M SORRY BUT...OUT FREAKIN STANDING SIR!

Odom and Walton should play more with Bynum and Gasol, their passing skills is next best to Kobe Bryant.

*
THANK YOU EDWIN GUECO FOR THE JUST WIN PETITION WORK - BANDWAGON
*
(01) MAMBA24 - OWNER - Edwin Gueco my mentor, thank you sir. You may not believe it but I think you can take part of the credit for the Lakers victory. If you don't think the Lakers
FO doesn't listen to us they do. KUDO'S BROTHER

Make no mistake folks, Kobe was and still is the driving force behind the offense. Literally and figuratively.

They switched Durant on to Kobe. Supposedly because of the confusion that this caused when they did so in the 2 away games. What Kobe was able to do in many of those instances was use screens set by Pau to drive. Pau would roll, setting up confusion on their part.

But Kobe set that up. It wasn't back to the basket postups, where the athletic Thunder could double team. Pau showed why he's the most skilled PF in the game off that pass. Bynum was ready to be a recipient or ready to get a rebound. But the basis was and always has been Kobe.

PREACH STAPLES24, PREACH! TELL IT BROTHER(Now don't blow it lol)

This Ariza / Artest debate is so ridiculous its not even funny. Let me present some FACTS that hopefully shine some light on the naive.

Ariza this year shot 33% from 3pt land.
Artest this year shot 35% from 3pt land.

Ariza last year shot 31% from 3pt land.
Artest last year shot 39% from 3pt land.

Ariza happened to catch fire in a contract year during the playoffs. This is blinding everyone on this board that actually think that Ariza was a better fit for LA than artest.

Playoff basketball is a half court game and extremely physical. Artest's game fits this style best.

Playoff basketball is a half court game and extremely physical. Artest's game fits this style best. Posted by: Mo P | April 28, 2010 at 10:02 AM

Mo P I don't know if you are a new blogger or not, if you are Welcome to The Lakers Blog, Laker Nation & the Laker Family. I hate to do this but whether you are new or not...OUT FREAKIN STANDING!!!

cont'd mid-thought lol

Very few coaches are open-minded, non-controlling enough to allow their players to choose their defensive assignments. Phil let Kobe take Westbrook - genius. Artest more active in the paint - beautiful. Inside-out game - flawless. Stifling defensive adjustments - excellent. Phil doesn't coach play-to-play, or even game-to-game many times. He isn't the X's and O's type coach that other minutiae-oriented coaches are. He is a cerebral coach that is more interested in making sure players approach games with the proper MINDSET and ATTITUDE to win, something many coaches overlook in their detail oriented type approaches. Phil is more motivator than tinkerer, more therapist than engineer. HOWEVER, when PJ DOES make adjustments, they usually work. When they spent an extra hour+ in the film room, I KNEW they'd be making the necessary adjustments.

Kobe though was so masterful, it's like watching Picasso paint or Michaelangelo sculpt. He has become such a great leader that he can score 13 points and still be the most dominant presence on the floor - by far. His defense is still outstanding, he still has his offensive gifts. What makes Kobe so valuable though is that he can overcome serious injuries like he's had, totally change his game and still dominate. Kobe didn't force shots, he did what he had to do to WIN. THIS is what seperates Kobe from the other MVP-type players - HIS WILL TO WIN! Sorry, the MVP regular season trophy might go to someone else, but whoever might get awarded it DOES NOT POSSESS THE WILL TO WIN THAT KOBE BRYANT POSSESSES - NO ONE DOES!

I'm just thankful on a daily basis that Kobe is a Laker, and now seemingly for life.

GO LAKERS!!!

Good NMorning Rick Friedman! And a fine morning indeed it is sir. The Force, Lakers Blog & Lakers Nation is in balance. And Rick Friedman is classy as ever.

Mamba24,

"You may not believe it but I think you can take part of the credit for the Lakers victory."

~~cannot be, there is only one almighty in the blog that could claim that credit. You are the soul of the blog. Rick, Justa and I just thought of doing it while you are sound asleep in Chicago. It is good the rest of the group followed our cue or else there is no bandwagon.

lately, there are new blogs sprouting in LA, like this money Smith, another Chick pretender. I didn't know that Stu and Bresnahan have blog of their own but still nobody can match the energy and excitement of the MM's blog.

@CYBERCOSMIX...OUT FREAKIN STANDING BROTHER!
Keep on doing what you doing!

>>>Lakers are I believe 17-1 after winning game 5 of a series that was tied 2-2.
>>>When was the only time they went on to lose and who beat them? (Let me
>>>know if you need a hint!)

SIXTY NINE!!!

The answer is 1969 - to the Boston Celtics of course. That was the Russell/Havlicek C's vs the West/Baylor/Chamberlain Lakers. If I remember right, that was the famous game where the Lakers had ballooons suspended from the rafters, and Russell made a speech about not letting them use those balloons to inspire the team.

THE KRAKEN WAS UNLEASHED!

 
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