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Lakers expect series against Thunder to be defensive


The Lakers and Oklahoma City Thunder have been playing tough defense in the Western Conference first-round playoff opener.

Lakers Coach Phil Jackson said he expected the best-of-seven series his team led 2-0 to be the same way for however the series lasted.

Games 3 and 4 are in Oklahoma City on Thursday and Saturday night, respectively.

The Lakers are holding the Thunder to 85.5 points per game and 39.2% shooting in the first two games.

The Thunder is holding the Lakers to 91 points and 39.7% shooting.

"I think both teams have shown defensively that they are very aggressive, very active," Jackson said after practice Wednesday before the Lakers boarded their 2 p.m. flight to Oklahoma City. "That seems to be the theme of this playoffs right now."

Kobe Bryant, who is averaging 30 points on 38.3% shooting in the first two playoffs games, is closing in on another milestone.

Bryant is 16 points shy of tying former Laker Jerry West (4,457 points) for the franchise's all-time leading playoff scorer.

If Bryant (4,441) surpasses West, he'll become the NBA's fifth all-time scorer in the playoffs.

Andrew Bynum didn't practice Wednesday because of soreness in his left Achilles' tendon. Bynum, who missed the last 13 regular-season games recovering from the injury, got treatment and said he will play.

-- Broderick Turner

Photo: Kobe Bryant #24 of the Los Angeles Lakers shoots over Kevin Durant #35, Russell Westbrook #0, and Serge Ibaka #9 of the Oklahoma City Thunder during Game Two of the Western Conference Quarterfinals of the 2010 NBA Playoffs on April 20, 2010 at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. The Lakers won 95-92. Credit: Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

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I don't care for all the butt kissing for MM at least with the K bro's the posting was light years quicker, this guy doesn't cut it, perhaps less articles and more work ON THE BLOG


as much as i appreciate your enthusiasm, your latest bandwagon

DERICK FISHER I SUPPORT YOU - BANDWAGON it is a total embarrassment.

it is a total suicide. it's like following Jim Jones to Johnstown.

i already had the COMMON SENSE to ESCAPE and RUN AWAY.

Derek Fisher stunk up the place so badly that even the Live Chat shut down.

If he continues the blog will shot down. there r no more excuses for LA TIMES to back him up so they will retort with SILENCE.

Keep getting treatment Socks - we're going to need you to be at full strength (or as close to it) for the playoffs.

looks like the KISSY, KISSY, TOUCHY< TOUCHY politics and game plan is fruitless.


facilitator? r u jocking?


"Mama, there goes that man",

"Hand Down, Man Down"

i hear spanish crickets and veteran intangibles

maybe slowly some of you will understand finally how damaging Faux Pas speech was after the Memphis game. and the fact that DFish joined him and that ACTUALLY PJ approved of it.

the team was totally out of balance. until the 4th quarter.

ANYONE OBSERVED THAT KOBE IS NOT CHEWING GUM ANYMORE to keep his sanity? finally is playoff time and he puts his anger out on the floor.

as he said: after 13 years you should know better. i hope also FAUX PAS will get it right.

Do you guys think we'll see more of the Kobe from last night, or more of the Kobe from the past month?

It really is challenging to shoot with tape or split (or worse, both) on either the index or middle finger - it's how you feel the ball coming off your hand. At least Kobe does have one of them that he can still feel with - but controlling the shot in it's release isn't easy when you have so much tape there.

He's proven that he can do it, but he's proven also that it's not quite as reliable. If Kobe doesn't hit his shots last night, series is 1-1.

Having said this, I do think the Lakers get out of the first round in under 6 games, and that's something I can't say of Denver.

I'm hoping for a little luck, a little dejection, and a little execution to end this series quickly so that we may enjoy what we need most. Rest.

Usually I'd feel almost the opposite (rust vs rest) but the playoffs will hopefully give us the payoff.

Troll man - sorry for the delay. I was just driving back from practice.

Guys: Eric Wright has been banned. The tone and level of personal attacks kept increasing so I had to take a stand.


Mamba24 - I am requesting to be put on the "I Love & Support Fish" bandwagon. He is being completely underrated by most bloggers on here (of course not the true, informed Laker fans) as well as most of the media. This is ridiculous and must stop - NOW. He's been in a shooting slump? SO WHAT? He will improve - he always has come through for us. He can't guard Westbrook one on one? SO WHAT? No one can, and his team defense is very good. PLEASE - for the love of god - give the man some respect. If you don't recognize his value to this team, you don't know basketball.

MM - you banned Mr. Wrong????? WOO HOOO!!!! Good stuff - and kudos for taking a stand against the slings and arrows.

Tim-4-Show - I'm thinking more of Kobe like last night. It's the first time since last year that I've seen "the face" come over him. I LOVE IT. It can only bode great things for us.

1. Kobe shot the ball too much in the first half when he should be on cruise control, setting his team mates to boost their confidence, letting his team mates do all the heavy lifting. So that he is much fresher in the 2nd half, ready to take control in 4th qtr.
2. But Kobe just does not get it. After 13 years, Phil still questions Kobe's shot selection, why? Because it is what it is and is the reason he only has 1 MVP.
2. We all have witnessed this team play without Kobe. It is beautiful to see a team sport, fun for the players and fun for the audience and most of the time resulting in easy win.
3. As Sir Charles said last night, Kobe makes this game difficult for himself in spite of being surrounded by talented team mates, and I mean no slouches!!
4. I guess even the world’s best player has a lot to learn when it comes to simple matters, like team spirit.

i'm concerned about the soreness in bynum's achilles. we don't need a mehmet okur injury now. let us pray and keep our fingers crossed.

Thanks Mark

Did I help?

Invisibly yours,


Hey if it means less troll, I'm happy to kiss MM's butt as needed lol.

Anyways, I think it was a back-breaker of a game. Not saying they'll fold but when you give it your all and still lose (cough refs cheated cough) it says something. I said before the series started this would be a tough series and I'm right. OKC is no joke, they're young but their youth is such that they don't know any better than to hang around and play and play they have. Even with Kevin Durant mirred in a defensive battle with Ron, they're chugging a long. Unfortunately for them, we are too. And we got the Bean on our side.

For game 3 I think we might end up playing from behind. But that's ok, even in the playoffs the strategy is to keep it close and to close it out. With the defense we have shown we're capable of and the offense that I know can and will click sooner rather than later...we will take it and take it to the bank. 2 down, 14 to go!

GO Lakers! Go Kobe!

MM, I commend you for taking a stand and banning Eric Wright. here's to MANY more bannings yet to come. I for one appreciate your action MM, Bravo!

There are some here that are here simply to cause havoc. I don't need that. I felt Eric to be among that group.

Guys: Eric Wright has been banned. The tone and level of personal attacks kept increasing so I had to take a stand.


Posted by: Mark Medina | April 21, 2010 at 02:41 PM


To MM, and all the people that made this day possible, I just want to say thanks. A special shout out to Edwin G. for cluing me into the fact that I had actually won.

I'd also like to thank the live chat crew: JAMF, phred, ChicnStu, Zaira, Faith, Rick F., Cali, Amit, Taliq, TitansFan, and anyone else who I've forgotten. You all have helped me sharpen my wit until it has reached it's current razor/Masamune-sword like state. Though I don't live chat every game, I certainly like to think of myself as one of the regulars.

To be honest, I had long ago given up any hope of winning the "Reader Comment of the Day" award. I just figured my best commenting days had come and gone. Sure I've been nominated plenty of times, but until now, no cigar. For awhile, I thought maybe it was my radical political views that stood in the way. I have openly expressed my favorable opinion of JVG as a commentator. This certainly hasn't won me any friends here. Yet despite my penchant for controversy here I am standing in the winner's circle. I guess this blog really is a meritocracy.

In closing I'd just like to say to those who say being nominated is enough, that's BS.

It's all about the W baby!

"Quite a few bloggers tired of hearing criticism of Derek Fisher. "

the point its so repetive DFish. Seriously is that your life's goal? To hate on Derek Fisher? Yes he's playing bad but really in 3 years is this really irrevelant? Will the fate of America hang on whether to hate Derek Fisher? Why don't you keep hating on Robert Horry then? Yeah he's retired but hell remember when he shot 5.3% in 3 point land in 2003 Playoffs? Or when he choked in Game 5 with a chance to win Game 5 with a open shot and instead bricked it? Then all of a sudden Horry gets 2 rings in San Antonio and another Game Winning Shot in the 2005 Finals. But that don't matter since he was in SA and he shot miserable in 2003 so it don't matter about his Game 4 shot against the Queens! Horry is trash like Fisher is huh?

dammit MM
I finally get around to knocking you and you respond with niceness. It's just not fair. Keep up the good work.

"Because it is what it is and is the reason he (Kobe) only has 1 MVP."

So does Shaq and Olajuwon and KG and Dr J. But wait 2 of them are in the top 10 players of all time aka the Shaqtus and the Dream! KG is in the top 20 along with Dr J. So hell they are trash huh LA FAN? Shaq sucks Olajuwon was trash, KG (before his Celtic years) was turrible, and Dr. J was overrrated by your logic huh?


Mark G - way to go!! And if I - in any way - have helped to sharpen your wit - you're in trouble my man. My wit is about as sharp as a dull spork.


It's not so much that we're tired of criticism of Fisher, we're tired of YOUR criticism of Fisher. You have this myopic view where all you can talk about is Fisher day after day after day. You keep telling us how much you know about the NBA's game but all we get to read from you is "Fisher Sucks, has sucked and will always suck until he's forced into retirement". Do you think that Mitch or Phil is reading you stuff? Do you think you are having any influence on the coming summer? OK, we get it now move on the rest of the game and dazzle us with analysis drawn from your vast NBA knowledge. My gosh, there are 9 other guys on the floor. Don't you have anything to say about them? I know you can do it: I've seen it once or twice since October.

As to the rest: Nagging injuries (besides Kobe's) can kill us.

Bynum's Achilles is something to worry about. He's not particularly mobile to begin with but a sore Achilles is going to put a damper on his post play and elevating for blocks.

Hopefully Ron Ron's thumb didn't get any worse during yesterday's game. The way he gets his hands involved a painful thumb can't be a good thing. Not to worried about his shooting as long as he can keep playin' D.


lakerfan - I suggest you learn how to count. I'm not sure what numbering system you're using, but you had 6 points and numbered 2 of them #2. Was it 2a and 2b you were going for? Or do you just like the number 2? Or do you have something against the number 6?


Congrats on Reader Comment of the Day.

Bynum needs that (fill in your favorite chinese herb here) and soon. Without a relatively healthy Drew we're either in for a long but futile post season, or a short and futile post season...

PS glad that trolls are on notice to behave, thanks MM.

mamba24, I'm on that derek fisher bandwagon. Even if he has played bad, the team is still up 2-0.

I honestly thought Sasha was going to get the bulk of the minutes to fill in for Derek. Sasha's got size, shooting skill (or at least an aura of it that create's spacing), and can play with Kobe.

Ouuccchhh, et al,

I agree with your assessments of Derbrick Fisher. I'm grateful for what Fish has provided for us in the past, and I appreciate his professionalism. But the gap of talent and athleticism between Fish and the vast majority of starting point guards in the NBA is tremendous. Most NBA analysis and the sports media say the same thing. Mitch Kupchak even says they need to address the team's PG position.

The problem with Fish is simple; I don't care so much about his defensive problems; Fish CAN'T MAKE SHOTS ANYMORE.


Game after game, for the past 2 seasons, its been 2-11, 3-15, 2-13...he only usually makes 2 or 3 shots per-game, and he shoot so damned much. He shot in the low 30% this year, and this is a starting PG for a championship caliber team!

What's worse is that each one of his misses usually leads to a transition basket for the opposing team. Each Fish miss is, in essence, a turnover.

My appreciation for a quality Laker player like Fish isn't greater than my devotion to the Laker TEAM. It's not about the individual, it's about the TEAM. And those who choose to stick with Fisher, despite his obvious decline in ability and his liability to the TEAM, are hypocrites, because from one side of their mouth they preach about wanting the Laker TEAM to succeed, and from the other side, they cheer a player who is hurting the TEAM'S chances of succeeding. You can't have it both ways.

We should all appreciate and respect Derick Fisher, I certainly do. But we can also be true to the contention that Fish is no longer capable of being an effective starting PG for this Laker team.

I remember the 2003 playoffs against the Spurs. Horry's shot abandoned him. He lost us that series against the Spurs.

One difference between Horry and Fish is that Horry came off the bench and his minutes were limited, but the main difference is that although Horry struggled to hit a bucket in that series, most of his shots were good open shots. Fish, on the other hand, is making rookie type decisions, forcing the issue by trying to be a playmaker and for reasons unknown, he continues to call his own number by trying to create shots for himself off of his dribble. I have no problem with Fish shooting all the shots that he can handle, as long as the shots are open assisted looks, but that is clearly not the case. He might be forcing the issue to get a new contract, as someone mentioned, or possibly because he feels he needs to take over a bigger offensive role because of the the injuries to Lamar/Artest/Kobe/Shannon/Bynum. I can live with his streaky shooting and safety cone defense, but this team can not win it all unless Fish starts acting like the experienced level headed veteran that he is.

"...the " Stubborn Master" and Kupchak for not upgrading and making a trade..."

You have been strongly advocating that Derek should not be the starting PG but you have never mentioned: WHO SHOULD PHIL NOW USE AS THE STARTING PG?

Please enlighten us and fill this blog with your basketball knowledge since you think you are smarter than Jackson and Kupchak combined.

MM, I applaud your decision to ban Eric Wright. You were patient to a fault with that guy. In general, I personally have no problem with your garden variety troll on this forum. I fact, we've had some great sparring with some Celt trolls, Kings trolls, and others. So merely being someone who hates the Lakers, or even a particular Laker (cough, DFish, cough furball), in my mind, doesn't justify outright banning.

What made Eric Wright different was that his comments quickly and relentlessly devolved from targeted irritation, to stalker-like badgering of other posters, and finally to unhinged poor taste.

So, thanks. You've removed a malignancy from this forum.

Unfortunately this is the truth...but many of you don't want to hear it. He has 4 rings ! And he hit a shot with 0.04 seconds ! And he hit a couple of big 3's against Orlando last year.

Posted by: DFish | April 21, 2010 at 02:50 PM

No, wrong again.
Its not that we don't want to hear it.
It's that we don't want to hear only that over and over and over.
All you write is the same stuff repeatedly.
I don't care that you use the name DFish but you have more than made your point. You have run out of new ways to state things about Fisher.

I saw a post of yours a while back that actually talked about the Lakers and Kobe and Odom with no mention of Fisher and it was a pretty good post.
That's all I am looking for DFish, just kinda sick of the same monotonous posts about Fisher, that's all.

Faith is in the building!

"For game 3 I think we might end up playing from behind."

I disagree. I believe the championship Lakers will finally show up on the road. There will be some serious spanking on game 3.

My only problem with OKC is that they're too nice. LO needs someone to punk him to wake up.

I think MM has been doing a good job, and appreciate the ban.

The KBros were too slow in banning KL back in 06-07 (and his ban was lifted eventually).

MM, keep up the good work - my only input is that you really do post so many times that it gets tough to follow the CONVERSATION, and that's a big reason why people visit here...

Once I figure out where the last post of the day typically is, that's where I'll post most of my comments. Sucks to make a good point only to have it evaporate within 2 hrs because 3 more threads are added (and don't get me wrong, not complaining about the abundance of reading material)

"...And he hit a shot with 0.04 seconds ! ..."

That is a physical impossibility.

i am constantly amazed at how little some poster's real lives mean to them compared to being able to bully someone, anyone on the internet. i guess it's easy to bag on a player compared to doing something of value one's self.

don't like a player or want to criticize him? go ahead, but when that becomes more important than the team you are rooting for winning a game, there is a sickness, a crippling lameness involved.

i am SO glad, noone on this messageboard runs the team or plays the (actual playoff) game.

The Snake:

Not to but in, but I'd like to answer your question. Who should the Lakers start at PG? They should start Fisher. But your question was relevant much earlier in the season.

The Lakers have their rotations now, and to disrupt it would be to disrupt the rhythm. Of course, they can't change the starting line up right now. They're stuck with what they have.

The problem is that Phil (and Mitch) should have addressed the PG situation earlier in the season. They failed to do so. Likewise, we're stuck with what we got in Fish.

Off topic.

Any computer savvy folks help with this?

For the past week, I can no longer log onto the Lakers site.
I always get this message:

Safari can’t open the page “” because the server unexpectedly dropped the connection. This sometimes occurs when the server is busy. Wait for a few minutes, and then try again.

I have cleared my history and also cleared the safari cache.
Anyone have any idea what I can do to get Safari to let me into the Lakers site.

I switched to another browser to get into the Lakers site but generally use Safari so would just like to get it back.
Any help appreciated.

With all due respect, there are other Lakers concerns. However, without question the biggest concern is poor play at the PG position.
Posted by: Todd | April 21, 2010 at 03:07 PM


Thanks for the well written and reasoned response.

You have a point but I disagree with you that the PG position is the biggest concern.

I have stated in numerous posts that if the open guy hits their shots the Lakers will win. I stand by this still. I think the lakers can win it all if they get consistent shooting from the open guys. If they don't get that I do not think they will win the finals and I question whether they will even make it that far.

Look at the shooting stats of the other guys taking open shots, not just during the playoffs, but for the last half of the season.
Look at game 2. Odom goes 2-9, Ron goes 2-10. If they each hit one more shot (it still would be a poor shooting nite for them) but the game is not a nail biter coming down to a last second OKC miss.

To me, the guys shooting so poorly is the biggest concern.
Lakers team D overall has been good these first 2 games.

Another concern perhaps bigger than Fisher, is some of the coaching decisions and substitutions of PJ. It's easy to armchair quarterback and most all sports fans seem to like to do it, but still, some of PJ's decisions are real head scratchers.

Another issue I would rank above Fishers play is the team not playing inside out very consistently. In game 1 they put on a clinic in the first quarter then got away from it. They start off inside out then get away with it. That has been a big problem all season and I am a bit surprised it is continuing to be a problem.

Now OKC has decided to just try and take away the inside game. I think that's a smart move on OKC's part. They are trying to force our outside shooters to beat them. This strategy just might work for them if they can shoot better. If the Lakers can't pull out a win in games 3-4 I think this becomes a 7 game battle.

If the Lakers do prevail, you can be sure every team they face is taking notes and will be packing the paint to force the outsiders shooters to beat them.
Their next opponent will be better than OKC.

Our outside shooters have got to step up and PJ needs to do some smart substitutions and game adjustments to keep this run going.
We can win with Fisher.
It's already been proven.


Congrats on reader comment of the day.
I especially liked the last line.
It sure was block party!
Good one.

"One difference between Horry and Fish is that Horry came off the bench and his minutes were limited"

WRONG! Horry not only started but also averaged 30 min a game. And it was necessary he started considering the only other PF were Mark Madsen and Samaki Walker and the infamous Slava Medvedenko. I'd take Josh Powell over any of those 3.

" but the main difference is that although Horry struggled to hit a bucket in that series, most of his shots were good open shots."

Fisher in Game 1 atm already made more 3 point shots than Horry did in the entire 2003 Playoffs!

"forcing the issue by trying to be a playmaker"

He made 6 assists leading the team in Game 2.

"because he feels he needs to take over a bigger offensive role because of the the injuries to Lamar/Artest/Kobe/Shannon/Bynum"

No majority of his shots were open shots created by Kobe. he does take a few off the dribble but that's about less than a 3rd usually. At the time being the Thunder are taking away the post (as seen with Bynum not providing as much energy compared to game 1) so your outside shooters has to pay. Ron didn't do much with a 2-10 shooting (1-6 from the perimeter) did he?

You have been strongly advocating that Derek should not be the starting PG but you have never mentioned: WHO SHOULD PHIL NOW USE AS THE STARTING PG?

Please enlighten us and fill this blog with your basketball knowledge since you think you are smarter than Jackson and Kupchak combined.

Posted by: The Snake | April 21, 2010 at 03:59 PM

*Clap* *Clap* Fisher is played turrible but hell neither Jordan Farmar nor Shannon Brown are the total answer.

And they fail to ask who is the back up PG who is supposed to lead the bench to some scoring.


Just a suggestion here for the blog. I have no criticism overall.

Perhaps at the end of each of your articles you could have a link that says,
to post a comment click here, or, to go to Lakers blog click here, or whatever.
The actual blog could be at that link. That way, all comments would run in a continuous stream and not end with each article.
Just a thought.
Keep up the good work.

["Anyways, I think it was a back-breaker of a game. Not saying they'll fold but when you give it your all and still lose (cough refs cheated cough) it says something. "

Posted by: Faith | April 21, 2010 at 03:03 PM ]

Explain please? What was the cheating and which side did it favor?

ART - FL Lakers fan - I'll pass the suggestion on to management.

In the meantime, I wanted to get everyone's take on the idea that I do a post like poll of the day and topic of the day and that can be seen as the main conversation thread. I will certainly approve comments in the other threads, but I thought it might be a good idea to have one seen as the main one so you guys don't feel like your conversation isn't as disrupted while we can keep the news coming along?

What do people think? I have a new post up. Feel free to post there or here or anywhere.


".. Likewise, we're stuck with what we got in Fish.

Posted by: troy | April 21, 2010 at 04:17 PM

Exactly. Complaining about Derek as the starting PG at this time is like complaining about Luke's contract.

It is what it is.

Art - FL Lakers Fan

i use only safari and is working. usually i just put the computer to sleep and the lakers blog on all the time. so i don't give them too many hits. but for many PC sites, Firefox will be more stables. i prefer safari for bookmarks and archiving, but when it's not working i just paste the link in the Firefox and go ahead. Firefox is also much better at saving music files and downloading. different strokes for different reasons.

i play 360 espn only in Firefox. safari is very finicky with it.

other game links in Safari. hope it helps.


nice too see a sighting of you. thought we lost U. i felt abandoned line a "newbie" in the middle of the playoffs. :-)

The Moderator ( not MM, the real one)

thanks for sunday's lines. i will have to go back to read it again and make a comment. in the future posts.


Hi Faith,

you wrote: Anyways, I think it was a back-breaker of a game

my response: I wish I could agree with you. I think they believe &
possibly expect to win every game at home. Game 3 is huge. If we
win that one the series is over.

Yeah, P Ang, I'm backkkkk :-) It's good to be here.

Ok so I think the reason why we'll be down early is because the OKC crowd and the OKC team will want to shake off their jitters. But to no avail, we will steal homecourt and close out the series. One game at a time lol.

Cough Cheating often do you see 15+ blocks in the game? Replay it on DVR and tell me some of those aren't fact fouls that were called on the other side.

Finally, I use Safari. It's fine for me. Did you update to the newest possible? 4.0.5 for me. If that doesn't help clear out your preference files of Safari (but make sure to export your bookmarks first) and see if that helps. It's actually a lot better in Safari than it is in Firefox for me. Which I admit is weird. But I love my safari and won't use anything else unless absolutely necessary.

"Cough Cheating often do you see 15+ blocks in the game? Replay it on DVR and tell me some of those aren't fact fouls that were called on the other side.

Posted by: Faith | April 21, 2010 at 04:57 PM"

So there were a lot of blocks, therefore there was a lot of contact that wasn't called, therefore, the refs were cheating for one of the teams? I'm kind of missing the logic here.

While it won't be a problem here, I wouldn't recommend taking this to any forums with Thunder fans. The two biggest calls of the game were the two calls that took Westbrook out of the game for a considerable amount of time and both of those were very iffy calls. That will surely be thrown back at you if you try to claim there was a conspiracy against the Lakers.

I agree wholeheartedly that some of those blocks were actually fouls, especially one in particular in a series with Odom- he was plainly hacked. On the other hand, I for the life of me couldn't see the foul that Durant supposedly laid on Artest in that sequence near the end. Looked like good, hard defense, and good offense as well. Not to be a ref apologist (far from it) but it's gotta be tough to be on the court making these decisions (sightlines?) without benefit of instant replay.


We all missed you.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!

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