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Caught in the Web: Lakers' preparation never ends for West Finals matchup with Phoenix

May 16, 2010 | 10:30 am

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Lakers links

--The Times' Broderick Turner details the latest on Andrew Bynum's right knee.

--The Times' Bill Plaschke asks Kobe Bryant whether he tanked Game 7 of the 2006 playoffs against Phoenix.

--The Times' T.J. Simers argues that Lakers fans have a short attention span regarding Bryant's performance in the 2006 playoffs, given their negative reaction to LeBron James' play against Boston in the Eastern Conference semifinals.

--The Times' Ching-Ching Ni explains how Bryant's $25,000 donation has helped students at Richard Merkin Middle School in South Los Angeles learn martial arts.

--The Times' Fabulous Forum blog lists Jerry Buss and Shaquille O'Neal as 10th and ninth, respectively on the Lakers' all-time greatest list.

--AOL Fanhouse's Sam Amick expresses concern on how Bynum's injury could have long-term implications.

--The Riverside Press Enterprise's Matt Calkins extrapolates on the Lakers' growth ever since their first-round playoff exits in 2006 and 2007 to Phoenix.

--The Orange County Register's Kevin Ding has more on Bynum's injury as well as on the success Phil Jackson and Bryant have experienced together in the postseason.

--NBA.com's Art Garcia highlights the Lakers' contention that they're far from satisfied with just playing in the Western Conference Finals.

--The Orange County Register's Jeff Miller dissects Jackson's personality.

--NBA.com's Sekou Smith focuses on how the Lakers feel ready for the West Finals.

--The Daily News' Elliott Teaford looks at all the possible defensive matchups the Lakers-Suns series will feature.

--Lakers.com's Mike Trudell talks about the Lakers-Suns series with play-by-play announcer Spero Dedes.

Yahoo! Sports takes a look in the video below on Bryant's resurgent play.

--ESPN Los Angeles' Land O Lakers' blog paints a complete picture on the ups and downs that Jordan Farmar has experienced with the Lakers.

--Forum Blue and Gold's Darius argues that Lakers forward Lamar Odom will serve as the team's X-factor against Phoenix.

--Laker Noise's Roland Lazenby anticipates the Lakers and Celtics meeting up in the NBA Finals.

--ProBasketballTalk's Kurt Helin gives his take on Bynum's injury.

--ProBasketballTalk's Matt Moore argues the NBA needs to stop allowing Jackson to criticize officials. Nonetheless, he acknowledged he's entertained with Jackson and Phoenix guard Steve Nash needling each other.

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Suns links

--The Times' Lisa Dillman highlights the various contributions from Phoenix's bench.

--The Times' Baxter Holmes explains how Nash has remained on top of his game at age 36. 

--NBA.com's Fran Blinebury argues Phoenix made the right decision in keeping Amare Stoudemire.

--The Arizona Republic's Paul Coro highlights Phoenix's desire to win the tempo battle against the Lakers.

--The Arizona Republic's Bob Young illustrates how Nash has taken Jackson's comments about him carrying the ball in stride. Or you can see for yourself in this video. It's fair to say Nash isn't all that concerned about it.

--The Arizona Republic's Coro and Young highlight Alvin Gentry's want for Phoenix to focus on rebounding.

--NBA Fanhouse's Brett Pollakoff has more on the back-and-forth between Jackson and Nash.

--Ball Don't Lie's Dan Devine outlines Robin Lopez's value to the Suns.

--Valley of the Suns' Tyler Lockman compares the dynamic duo between Nash and Stoudemire to other top duos in NBA history.

Tweet of the Day: "I think @Lakers wins in 6 or 7, but frontcourt edge minimized with Bynum's knee" -- samickFanHouse (AOL Fanhouse NBA writer Sam Amick).

Reader Comment of the Day: Don't they realize if they respond to PJ, they have already lost...PJ's stuff is not usually for the Refs, but for the players. I don't know how it works, but it does. This is some powerful stuff he has. Look at what it did to Stern. He blew a gasket and wishes he never would have responded so foolishly. And Phil wasn't even going after him. Just watch. Nash will be thinking of PJ the next time he tries a cross over dribble, instead of focusing on his next move like he should. Just that little hesitation will lead to a mistake. Nash will kick himself for even letting PJ into his mind. Nash will then get mad. Nash will lose focus. Phil will see the whole thing. Phil will get that quirky little smile. Phil will turn to a coach and boast. "Ha, I told you so" Phil will have won. -- Fatty

-- Mark Medina

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

Top photo: Lakers guard Derek Fisher, left, goes head-to-head with teammate Jordan Farmar during a team practice session at the Toyota Sports Center in El Segundo on Wednesday. Credit: Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times

Bottom photo: Veteran shooting guard Jason Richardson has provided a spark during the playoffs by averaging six points more a game than his regular-season average. He'll play a critical role against the Lakers as he goes against Kobe Bryant on both ends of the floor. Credit: Mark J. Rebilas / US Presswire


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