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Caught in the Web: Capturing reaction to Lakers' 128-107 Game 1 win over Phoenix Suns

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Game stories

--The Times' Mike Bresnahan details how the Lakers fired on all cylinders in their 128-107 Game 1 victory over the Phoenix Suns.

--The Arizona Republic's Paul Coro explains how the Suns look far from ready to compete with the Lakers.

--The Orange County Register's Kevin Ding documents how a long rest benefited the Lakers.

--The Riverside Press-Enterprise's David Lassen likens Kobe Bryant's play to that of sunblock because both remain effective in "dealing with hot Suns"

--The Daily News' Elliott Teaford showcases how the Lakers carried momentum from their semifinals sweep over Utah into the Western Conference finals against Phoenix.

--The New York Times' Billy Witz focuses on how Phoenix couldn't stop Bryant and Lamar Odom

Notebooks

--The Times' Bresnahan highlights Odom's contributions, Andrew Bynum's limitations and Sasha Vujacic's return.

--The Orange County Register's Janis Carr features Vanessa Bryant's T-shirt in reference to Arizona's controversial immigration law.

--The Riverside Press-Enterprise's Lassen explains why Lakers Coach Phil Jackson has maintained his stance on Arizona's immigration law.

--ESPN Los Angeles' Dave McMenamin labels health as the biggest contributor to the Lakers' success.

--The Daily News' Teaford provides a snapshot of the wide-ranging questions Jackson dealt with in his pre-game news conference.

Sidebars

--The Times' Broderick Turner explains why Phoenix believes it can bounce back from its Game 1 loss.

--The Times' Lisa Dillman credits Pau Gasol's contributions.

--The Riverside Press-Enterprise's Matt Calkins hypothesizes that the Lakers will win the West finals with ease if Odom maintains the strong dominance he displayed in Game 1.

--ESPN Los Angeles' Ramona Shelburne reports that actor David Arquette was knocked to the ground at the end of the game.

--The Daily News' Jill Painter features the effort from the Lakers' bench.

--The Arizona Republic's Bob Young highlights Robin Lopez's return.

Columns

--The Times' Bill Plaschke chalks up Bryant's 40-point performance partly to revenge for the Lakers' 2006 and 2007 first-round losses to Phoenix.

--Despite the Lakers' dominating Game 1 victory, The Times' T.J. Simers predicts the Suns will win the series in six games.

--The Times' Mark Heisler notices Bryant's anger fueling his clutch performance.

--NBA Fanhouse's Sam Amick wonders if the Suns can bounce back.

--The Arizona Republic's Dan Bickley believes Phoenix played too tight.

--The Arizona Republic's Paola Boivin argues Bryant's performance served as an example for how Amare Stoudemire should play as a superstar.

--The Daily News' Vincent Bonsignore chalks up the Lakers' dominance partly to Stoudemire's poor defense.

--The Orange County Register's Ding argues the Lakers should do whatever it takes to keep Jackson as their head coach.

--NBA.coms' Scott Howard-Cooper argues that Odom's play set the tone.

--Sports Illustrated's Lee Jenkins highlights Bryant's effort.

--Fox Sports' Mark Kriegel believes no one can compete with Bryant in the postseason.

--ESPN Los Angeles' Arash Markazi believes the Lakers have undergone a personality change.

--ESPN Los Angeles' McMenamin argues that Odom's Game 1 performance illustrates why the Lakers value him.

--The Orange County Register's Jeff Miller left the game impressed with how easy the Lakers made it look.

--The Riverside Press-Enterprise's Gregg Patton says the Lakers somehow managed to beat Phoenix playing an up-tempo style.

--Yahoo! Sports Marc Spears believes Bryant's performance served as a statement.

--ESPN Los Angeles' Shelburne argues that the Suns lack nastiness.

--ESPN.com's Marc Stein details the Suns' collapse.

--NBA Fanhouse's Chris Tomasson thinks the Lakers have matured since their first-round series against Oklahoma City.

--The Orange County Register's Mark Whicker argues the Lakers' exposed Phoenix's poor defense.

Blogs

--ESPN Los Angeles' Andy and Brian Kamenetzky break down Odom's game, the Lakers' defense and some significant stats -- and provide moving pictures.

--Forum Blue and Gold's Darius wants the Lakers to replicate their Game 1 performance for the entire series.

--Silver Screen and Roll's DexterFishmore explains the Lakers' dominance.

--Valley of the Sun's Michael Schwartz dissects the Sun's ineffective defense.

Tweet of the Day:"Vanessa Bryant is wearing a t-shirt that says "Do I look Legal?" is that a shot at phil?" -- janiscarr (Orange County Register's Janis Carr)

Reader Comment of the Day: Third quarter: Suns: 24. Kobe: 21. If the Suns are the most efficient offensive team in the league, what does that make Kobe? -- FEARless

-- Mark Medina

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

Photo: Kobe Bryant begins to celebrate after dunking on a fast break against Phoenix in the fourth quarter of Game 1 on Monday night. Photo: Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times

 
Comments () | Archives (28)

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@EASTCOASTJESSIE, That was a good article Princess thanks for the Link. Yes I do believe Phil will get paid!
Mamab24

Regarding Vanessa Bryant's shirt and the tweet of the day, why does Janiscarr think that is a shot at Pj? Did he write law? Did he have anything to do with it's creation/signing? How about she wore it as a shot at Arizona and the law. That makes more logical sense.

Re: Janis Carr's tweet
Hard not to notice that..
Anyone wearing that t-shirt --except maybe an underage girl being sarcastic,
is going to look cheap.

Just sayin...

Oh... DTM_T...
My bad.. that went right over my head. I thought.. apology apology

Good game last night. Not unexpected.

It looks like we're headed towards another EPIC Lakers/Celtics finals. I've been waiting two years to get another piece of the Celtics. This time, redemption will be super sweet.

It's going to be about the matchups as always and I'm very happy that we have Ron Artest on our side this time. Paul Pierce absolutely killed us in 2008, we had no answer for him. Now Artest can harass him.

I can't wait!

Go Lakers!

I'd wear that t-shirt in a heartbeat and it definitely won't make me look cheap. It's a statement, and a valid one at that.

I doubt it's a jab at Phil because he never said he was for or against the law. What he said was that he didn't agree with basketball teams being involved in political issues. Many people feel that way, so what?

Mamba24,

Do us one favor.

We want you or EastCoastJessie {aka Elle Woods} to drive little Joey Buss to the nearest 99 Cent Only store...so he can pick up lots of Green & White balloons to put up in the Staples Center rafters.

Unlike 1969, the Celtics want to celebrate # 18 with the proper balloons!!

Mark,

You may want to add a link to the article on Shannon's missed dunk -- absolutely fantastic photos. Kid almost jumped out of the building -- Kobe even looks amazed in one of the photos!

Jesse,
I sincerely retract the cheap comment.. I missed the immigration reference completely, and misjudged the woman's statement. Valid indeed.

Looking at the way Pau Gasol manhandled Amare Stoudamire last night, I'd say he's ready to punk Kevin Garnett.

Now that will be sweet.

Go Lakers!

Red, don't count your chickens before they hatch. I'll consider the source with the Elle Woods jab and refrain from comment.

Mamba24,Do us one favor.We want you or EastCoastJessie {aka Elle Woods} to drive little Joey Buss to the nearest 99 Cent Only store...so he can pick up lots of Green & White balloons to put up in the Staples Center rafters.Unlike 1969, the Celtics want to celebrate # 18 with the proper balloons!! posted by: RED`S LOVE CHILD | May 18, 2010 at 11:42 AM
Getting a lil Cocky there are you Red. I like that! That's all the better so when we sweep
I can give a shout out to Red as one of those that provided the inspiration for the victory.
Sorry Red, your team has no chance, no chance at all. I mean if you have to depend on Rondo to save you well...But you go ahead and do a good job with the Magic and you can Fly that Eastern Conference Finals Flag from the GAHDEN cause that's as far as your winning train is going. Red you haven't seen anything like what the Lakers have in store for the Celtics. I almost feel sorry the destruction will be so complete. but after a few decades don't worry the celtics will be able to regroup from the Whipping The Lakers gave them and once again compete for a championship in say 2025. Good luck to your team tonight. but remember the closer you come to winning the Eastern Connference Finals the Closer you come to getting blown out and sent for a two decade vacation by The Freakin World Champion LA Lakers.

No problem Chickism...I assume you missed the heated immigration debate last week.

Sorry to go off subject so fast, but no time today...I think the lottery thing is today...whenever trades are talked about, as soon as pick becomes a person I think the trade talk should include reference to who that pick turned out to be. For instance, Lakers don't have a first round pick again because they traded their 08 and 10 1st round picks, along with Kwame calves, and "quick draw" Crittendon....do you know who that 08 pick turned out to be?????? Donte Green of the Sacramento Kings....averaged 9 pts, 3 boards, 1 assist this year. Ended up being traded from Memphis to Houston to Sacramento. Now 2 picks above him was George Hill, a guy the Lakers could have drafted and developed. Below Donte, I didn't recognize anyone significant. Kwame became cap space fodder, Crittenton got traded to Whizzers (the sound of bullets flying past) for no one of great significance as well.....Can't evaluate a trade until the careers of all the players involved have ended, kinda....

The best coach in the league...as Nash said about carry over dribble of the ball....

“I’ve never heard anyone accuse me of carrying it. I mean, the best coach in the League, Gregg Popovich, didn’t have a problem with it last week.”

Break down that sentence, first he says no one accuses him of doing it, then he say Gregg (Boozer) Popovich didn't have a problem with IT last week.....well what is IT?......."IT" is that Nash carrys the ball, he's admitting it that he does. Put Popovich didn't wine over it......watch what you say Steve"Rocky" Nash, Stern, fine him up, he just admitted that he carrys the ball, and that your refs are not calling him for it, that's worth $35K......ask Phil that's the going rate.

Laker fan-

Looks like Ill be at the game tomorrow.

Let me know if you spot me. Ill be the one wearing a white shirt with a big red gatorade stain!

Well, I mean if George Hill were available, but he was already picked by San Antonio....SORRY!!!!!

Truth is, Jesse, I'm just so chronically disappointed in this culture.. how young girls are encouraged to dress and act "cheap"... that I just projected that kind of
message onto the tshirt we're talking about..
So my agenda blinded me to what was really happening.

Mamba24,

does leprechaun BBQ well?

It seems like it might be a touch on the bitter side, not to mention old and stringy.

>>>Well, I mean if George Hill were available, but he was already picked by San
>>>Antonio....SORRY!!!!!

Yeah, I was kinda confused by that logic as well.

Nicholas Batum was picked only 3 spots before the pick we gave up!!!!

Brook Lopez was picked only 18 spots before the pick we gave up!!! WHY OH WHY DIDN'T WE PICK BROOK!!?!?!?!?

If he wanted to make a case for someone the Lakers could have picked, I might have gone with Mario Chalmers, DeAndre Jordan, or Luc Richard Mbah a Moute. Those were the best players picked AFTER the Lakers 1st round pick.

But you know what? I'd rather have Pau than have Kwame and that first round pick back.

Question for anyone that could help. Thanx in advance.

At our Laker get together we had last night for the game, a question came up. Do and ones count in favor of your fg% or if they get fouled in the act of shooting and miss the shot, does it go against their fg%? How does this work? We tried to fallow Kobes shot count last night including the and ones and the misses when he got fouled in the act, but the ending stats didn't match the number of shots we counted.

Magia32, Shot attempts don't count when you miss while you're fouled.

Lakers must stay focused and determined. Welcome to the Kobe and Lakers revenge tour!!!

STUNNED, DEMORALIZED, SPEECHLESS, THE WIND KNOCKED OUT OF THEM! this is how the phoenix suns fans felt after last nights LAKERS BEATDOWN. at the arizona republic blogging sight, they CANNOT BELIEVE the BUTTKICKING they received from the Lakeshow! they were so sure that their beloved suns would steal game 1. they've been telling me for weeks the Lakers were OVERATED! the bench stinks, L.O. never shows up, gasol is a wuss, d-fish is old, etc. i was telling them, with the exception of artest, this the same Laker team that won nba title last year, you fans and the suns should have some respect for the Lakers. if you think for one moment L.A. is going to lay down and die for you because you've won 6 games in a row, you are sadly mistaken! of course, after the game they went to "excuse city". the refs took grant hill out of the game. the refs weren't calling fouls on the Lakers rough play. david stern conspiracy to get L.A./Boston back to the finals, etc. FINALLY i said to the MYOPIC SUNS FANS, can't you ever JUST SAY the other team was better than YOU? of course no answer to that. it's a glorious day in arizona. just trying to decide which jersey to wear today to my favorite sports bar! kobe, gasol or my vintage baylor......hmm, FEELING IT!

Where is Butler when I needed him?

Bring on the Celtics! let's break it down!
1. Center: Bynum = Perkins (both have bad knees, both take up space, are a big body to shoot over or around, and both get garbage points). Advantage = draw
2. Power Forward: Gasol > Garnett. Pau is in a groove, but so is Garnett. Pau is a better passer and gets easy buckets and is much more mobile. Garnett will try to punk Pau, but Pau will push back this year. Pau has to take a few on the chin and then assert himself. Advantage Lakers
3. Backup Big Man: Odom > Rasheed. Odom's play is a major factor in the series. Lamar must want revenge. Lamar should take a few more boxing lessons to prepare for the upcoming fight with Garnett and Sheed. Odom is going to have to fight all 3 celtic bigs for rebounds, but Odom is smart he won't ruffle Sheed's feathers, he'll go around him, pick the rebound and be at halfcourt while Sheed argues with the refs. Rasheed will get some big shots and rebounds but if LO brings it, this is advantage Lakers (I know Sheed plays Center and LO plays PF)
4. Small Forward: Artest Rondo. I predict lakers use Kobe to slow down Rondo, and Kobe cheats off him to expose Rondo as still an unreliable jump-shooter. Meanwhile Kobe may srtuggle and have 5 turnovers per game from Rondo's excellent defense, but Kobe should rise up and teach Rondo a few things about playoff basketball. Kobe is healthy again, enough said. The trash talking between these two should be fun to watch.
Advantage Lakers
6. Shooting guard. Fish Brown
Back up ball handler Farmar ...?
Other guys... Bring in Mbenga, and Sasha for defense, and Walton to keep the ball moving...?
can anyone help out with the rest of the positions or comment on what looks to be a great series?

Parts of my above post got hammered.
Small forward Artest plays Pierce to a draw and this is the most enterataining match-up of the series. If artest can put up 12-5-5, he will negate Pierce's 15-5-2. My only hope is that Phil tasks Artest with taking Piece into the paint and posting him up 5 times per game. Piece cannot stop Artest in the paint. Artest is smart enough to bother Pierce enough to hamper his effeciveness.

Final thoughts.. I hope sheed breaks down and loses it and that RonRon doesn't!!!

">>Well, I mean if George Hill were available, but he was already picked by San
>>>Antonio....SORRY!!!!!

Yeah, I was kinda confused by that logic as well.

Nicholas Batum was picked only 3 spots before the pick we gave up!!!!

Brook Lopez was picked only 18 spots before the pick we gave up!!! WHY OH WHY DIDN'T WE PICK BROOK!!?!?!?!?

If he wanted to make a case for someone the Lakers could have picked, I might have gone with Mario Chalmers, DeAndre Jordan, or Luc Richard Mbah a Moute. Those were the best players picked AFTER the Lakers 1st round pick.

But you know what? I'd rather have Pau than have Kwame and that first round pick back.

Posted by: LongTimeLakerFan | May 18, 2010 at 12:31 PM"

LTLF, oh, I absolutely agree, I just want people to keep thinking about how situations play out. My favorite discovery was that Shannon Brown was drafted 1 pick ahead of Farmar....I bet one of the main goals of the Ammo/UPS trade was to get UPS who they were probablty going to draft if he were not taken by Cleveland.!!!! (Yes, salary dump was a major part of the trade to get him, but we had AMMO for 1.5 years now, and what has he done???) Who they were probablty going to draft if he were not taken by Cleveland.


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