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Caught in the Web: Previewing Game 1 of Lakers-Jazz series


Lakers links

--The Times' Mike Bresnahan details Andrew Bynum's small tear in some cartilage in his right knee, prompting the Lakers to list him as questionable for today's game against Utah.

--The Times' Bill Plaschke isn't excited about this Lakers-Jazz matchup.

--The Times' Mark Heisler details how Kobe Bryant is coping with his assorted injuries.

--The Daily News' Vincent Bonsignore has nothing but good things to say about the effort Oklahoma City gave in the first round against the Lakers.

--The Orange County Register's Kevin Ding breaks down each matchup in the Lakers-Jazz series.'s Scott Howard-Cooper details his keys to the Lakers-Jazz series.

--ESPN Los Angeles' Andy and Brian Kamenetzky preview Game 1 of the Lakers-Jazz series in podcast format.

--ESPN Los Angeles' Dave McMenamin argues that the Lakers' familiarity with Utah should benefit them this series. He also lists five things to watch in the series.

--The Orange County Register's Jeff Miller argues Lakers forward Lamar Odom needs to have stand-out performances against Utah.

--The Riverside Press Enterprise's Gregg Patton argues the Lakers shouldn't have too much problem with Utah.'s Mike Trudell has a comprehensive series preview.

--The Daily News' Elliott Teaford details the Lakers' familiarity with the Jazz.

--The Daily News' Gene Warnick has a position-by-position breakdown of the Lakers-Jazz series.

--Yahoo! Sports previews the Lakers-Jazz series.

--Forum Blue and Gold previews Game 1 as well as the entire series.

--Silver Screen and Roll's DexterFishmore expects the Lakers to breeze past Utah.

Jazz links

--The Times' Lisa Dillman highlights the value Carlos Boozer provides for the Jazz.

--Dillman also has details on Wesley Matthews and C.J. Miles.

--Fox Sports' Marques Johnson breaks down the Lakers-Jazz series in the video below

--The Salt Lake City Tribune's Kurt Kragthorpe explains why Utah likes its chances against the Lakers.

--The Salt Lake City Tribune's Steve Luhm reflects on the Jazz' first-ever playoff series against the Lakers, and also analyzes the series' matchups.

--The Salt Lake City Tribune's Ross Siler details the Jazz's problems at Staples Center.

Tweet of the Day: "What I'm seeing is a lot of conflicted Laker fans who can't help but root for the Celtics - they're extremely conflicted" -- EricPincus (Hoopsworld's Eric Pincus)

Reader Comment of the Day:"By now I don't get disappointed anymore because of Bynum's assorted injuries since they are sort of expected to happen. This is somewhat related to consistency issue; he has not been consistently healthy." -- CTran

--Mark Medina

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Photo Credit: Andrew Gombert/EPA.

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Following the advice/opinion of the modern day Zakee will get you exactly what you want:

A better Lakers team.

A more harmonious blog.

Now, let's win game one!!!

Good Morning Everyone!

I'm looking forward to seeing you at the live chat today. Hope you're having a good weekend!

Via Mark Trudell's tweet: In essence, Bynum will start and Jackson and his staff will monitor how he's moving on the knee, with Lamar Odom on call.

Kevin Ding's tweet: Phil on Bynum, who will start: "Andrew's prepared to play. ... He's going to try and work through it."

I think Bynum is slowly getting it, play through the injury and be a warrior like the rest of your teammates who are also nursing an injury.

One game at a time. One win at a time. Let's get it done men!!

HOBBITMAGE… “Are you surprised that Bynum has another injury in his knee?” Hola. No, I’m not surprised. A little disappointed sure. But I also don’t think it’s a big thing. Drew wasn’t acting like it was a big deal, even chest bumping Pau to congratulate him after his redeeming game winning tip in. The game is tough and injuries are inevitable. I like that Drew is committed to playing injured or not. I think he has been more unlucky than injury prone but at some point why really doesn’t matter. We need him to be able to play because he gives the team an entirely different dimension they need.
Even when he is not 100%, Drew’s presence is one of the big keys to our improved interior defense. I’m sure you’ve seen how other teams immediately start attacking the rim the minute Drew goes out.
And it’s not just his size, length, and shot blocking we lose. It’s the intimidation factor that keeps opposing players from even driving into the paint. I think Drew has been playing great defense. I wish he would be better at boxing out and using spin moves to get better position posting up but it’s like nobody in the league does that anymore. Even you or I could have made that tip in Pau did to win.
Despite being in the league for several years, we always have to remember that Drew is still in college as far as the actual number of basketball games he has played in and is still only 22-years old. And while the jury is still out on whether he is injury prone, Drew has remained optimistic and motivated and each year has recovered faster, played increased games, and contributed more in the playoffs. That of course assumes that he is able to play through the pain and continue to anchor our defense.
Can the Lakers win without Drew this year? Maybe, but if you go back to the last times that Pau Gasol played against Tim Duncan and Shaquille O’Neal, it becomes obvious that the Lakers need Andrew Bynum’s size and bulk to defend the paint. Both Duncan and O’Neal had a field day backing Pau down and dunking on him when we last played the Spurs and Cavs. As inconsistent as he was at times on offense in the Thunder series, Drew was one of the keys to the Lakers playing great defense. I think we are going to need him even more if and when we play San Antonio and Cleveland.
Interested to know in general what you think but let’s not get into a detailed parsing of every word. :-)

Lakers in 6

Perfect second series. Even Sloan doesn't think they can win this. It's all lining up in our favor.

Turn it up, turn it on, go LOUD, GO Lakers!

I thought last night was going to be the first time that I ever rooted for the Celtics. But let me tell you, this is what it must feel like for a man to put on a dress. LOL. I mean, imagine me sitting there in front of the TV screaming “Great play, Paul!” or “What a block, Kevin!” Just imaging the words were enough to make me puke. So what do you do in that situation. Simple, try rooting for the Cavs.
But wait a minute, this is even worse. While hating the Celtics is sort of like an institution in my family, hating LeBron and Shaq is significantly more personal. A quick test of “Great drive, LeBron!” or “Throw it down, Shaq!” were disgusting. Not to mention listening to the former and never again to be head coach whose firing led to the ascension of Phil Jackson’s coaching career worshipping LeBron and bowing submissively to kiss his feet on national TV. The guy probably sleeps with LBJ’s puppet.
As every old timer knows, when nothing seems to work, go with your gut instinct, which in this case is to hate and despise both teams and let them know it. “FU, Jimmy! Way to blow the dunk, Shaq! Nice turnover, Paula? Another brick, Rondo! Smart foul, Big Baby. Smart move, Doc. Shoot it left handed, Jimmy.” Funny how just doing what comes naturally can increase your pleasure of watching. Like how having action hones your interest in a game, this is the only way to watch Celtics vs. Cavs.

LOL Laker Tom!! I understand the feeling of hating the very idea of cheering for either one of those teams. I too could not stomach any form of approval for any move any of them made. Mocking and deriding both teams is the only sane way for me to go as well...!

I just hope they can beat the crap out of each other for the full 7 games.

Whatever your predictions and/or pronostications, don't underestimate the enemy. There is always a new day of upsets if things are not in the right place. First and foremost, a game has to be played in order to record it as a win. Secondly, it is unfair to belittle opponents just basing it on history, have we not learned from that lesson. Thirdly, Drew is also half-injured, so our strenght in the post is also haphazard. Odom, Artest have not done a great job in their offense in the previous series. That one too has to improve too, both have sustained injuries also that we have to be concerned of.

Go Lakers, continue the business of moving on through hard work and not hard talk.

Kobe owes it to the Lakers organization to sit his butt down in the off season and get his finger operated on and healed and be healthy for the first time in the last 3 years. He has an olympic gold medal and have nothing else to prove in this league. He has done everything an athlete can do. Championships are the only goal for the lakers now..

What can we say about Bynum!! He is hurt all the time and is reminding me of Greg Oden. The Lakers had better start looking for another big man... Trade Bynum while you can.

The league and media has given LeBron titles that he has not yet earned. They call him the King? King of what? He hasn't won the big one yet but the league is working hard to ensure he is in the finals and get his shot at a championship. He won the MVP last year and wasn't a champion. Why hasn't Kobe won 2 MVPs by now? Just shows who the league wants to market..



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