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Caught in the Web: Reactions to Lakers' 121-96 victory over Portland Trail Blazers

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Game stories

--The Times' Mike Bresnahan details how the Lakers went on cruise control in their 121-96 victory Sunday over the Portland Trail Blazers.

--The Orange County Register's Kevin Ding focuses on Pau Gasol's fourth career triple double.

--The Oregonian's Joe Freeman observes Portland's no showing against L.A.

--The Riverside Press Enterprise's David Lassen mentions a Spanish television crew last week documented Gasol's play, but missed out on his triple-double performance.

--The Daily Breeze's Elliott Teaford showcases the Lakers' dominance.

Notebooks

--The Times' Bresnahan highlights the possibility Lakers rookies Devin Ebanks and Derrick Caracter will be sent down to the D-League.

--The Orange County Register's Janis Carr explains how Lamar Odom celebrated his 31st birthday.

--The Riverside Press Enterprise's Lassen shares how Lakers guard Steve Blake spilled some secrets about Portland, his former team, when the coaching staff put together its scouting report.

--The Daily Breeze's Teaford explains why Lakers Coach Phil Jackson doesn't want his team to pursue shattering the 72-win regular-season record, set by the 1995-96 Chicago Bulls.

Sidebars

--The Times' Broderick Turner credits Ron Artest's defense on Brandon Roy.

--True Hoop's Mike Lynch breaks down a few numbers from Gasol's performance.

--Forget McDonald's six-piece nuggets. ESPN Los Angeles' Dave McMenamin provides 10 of his own nuggets on the Lakers-Blazers game. He also explains why the Lakers have little reaction to their 7-0 start.

--The Oregonian's Jason Quick details Roy's struggles.

--NBA.com's John Schuhmann wonders how long the Lakers can sustain this excellence.

--ESPN.com's Marc Stein remains impressed with the Lakers' strong start.

Columns

--The Times' Mark Heisler argues it's unrealistic for the Lakers to surpass 72 wins.

--ESPN.com's J.A. Adande tackles the same question about whether the Lakers can get to that 72-win mark.

--ESPN Los Angeles' Ramona Shelburne credits the Lakers' team chemistry.

--The Orange County Register's Mark Whicker argues Pau Gasol could become the league MVP.

--Fox Sports' Billy Witz argues the Lakers-Blazers series will be a good playoff matchup assuming the two teams are healthy come postseason time.

Blogs

--CBSSports.com's "The Game Changer" point to the Lakers' chemistry as making the difference.

--ESPN Los Angeles' Andy Kamenetzky features post-game video.

--ESPN Los Angeles' Brian Kamenetzky breaks down the Lakers' victory.

--Lakers.com's Mike Trudell recaps the Lakers' victory in his running diary.

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

--Forum Blue and Gold's Darius Soriano believes the Lakers' performance against Portland shows the potential they have this season.

Tweet of the Day: "My defensive is better than some all-stars offense. But tonight Brandon Roy was hurt. His knee and back ... But this season and in playoffs I want to TRy hold someone scoreless I use to do that in Indiana. 0 points 7 points Etc" -- RONARTESTCOM (Lakers forward Ron Artest)

Reader Comment of the Day: "Yes, I did get to see last night's game. A true feast, to be sure. Gasol is more than capable of a triple double on any given night. I like that Ron and Barnes see themselves as a unit of stoppers. Blake blows me away. PJ will be challenged to find enough minutes for all the talent now assembled. What a start! Being back on the blog definitely accelerates my recovery. This is a remarkable family here." -- Rick Friedman

Photo: Lakers center Pau Gasol dunks during the second half of the Lakers' 121-96 victory Sunday over the Portland Trail Blazers. Credit: Francis Specker / Associated Press.

 
Comments () | Archives (71)

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Great win last night. Keep it up!

Go Lakers!

PHil says the '95 Bulls were better defensively than this year's Lakers?

Think it's more a statement about the teams of that era than it is about players.

This Laker defense is just starting to emerge. Matt, Ron, Kobe, LO, and AB at the rim? Even Phil may be surprised.

Rick Friedman - KUDOS for wearing the mantle of the Friedman Award upon your return. Well said, my BFF.


MM - and kudos to you for giving the people what they want! You're a gentleman, sir.


Damn! I feel good this morning!!

Damn! I feel good this morning!! Posted by: LakerLass | November 08, 2010 at 10:45 AM
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WOW! A LakerLass sighting!!! Lass is it really you? LOL!

RCOTD = RICK FRIEDMAN = OUT FREAKIN STANDING SIR!!!!!!!!!! KUDOS!!!

Yaaaaay Rick!

Mamba, Justa,

I guess frank was wrong yesterday.

Lass tell me the truth, the reason you feel good is not because you have been combining the Shake with The Healing is it? LOL!

Repost, sorry - I want in on some bandwagons!

Banner 17 will be the end result of the first 16-0 playoff run!

LO deserves his due - He's an all star this year or the voters need their heads checked!

Regarding East coast bias - was listening to BSPN radio and they were talking about the Lakers this year possibly being in the conversation for all time great teams. Maybe they are coming around?

I would like to pose this question to the crue...I know it's early still, and Kobe's hurt, but someday Kobe's skills will diminish to non-superstar level. You can already see that Gasol is capable of taking on the mantle as the focal point of this offense. Will Kobe be willing to take a more permanant back seat? I hope so, because Kobe will still be devastating as a number 2 or number 3 option. I don't think he'll go the way of AI...thoughts?

Lass tell me the truth, the reason you feel good is not because you have been combining the Shake with The Healing is it? LOL!
Posted by: mamba24 | November 08, 2010 at 10:51 AM

I am not EVEN gonna go there. LoL.

I am not EVEN gonna go there. LoL. Posted by: LakerLass | November 08, 2010 at 10:53 AM
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Sorrrrrrry!...LMAO!!!

To be fair to the Portland, they played 5 games in a week including 2 back to back games. So I hope the Lakers dont get too comfy..Go Lakers!!!!

Maybe the Lakers don't have any room now, but Eric Dampier's Houston deal seems to be dead now.

*_________________________________________________________________________*
WE GOT THIS – TITLE 17 AND WE CAN’T MISS !! - BANDWAGON
*_________________________________________________________________________*
(01) JUSTANOTHERMAMBAFAN - OWNER - We Got This & We Want More! Nothing but a (17th) Title will suffice.
(02) ZAIRA AMATERASU - GODDESS - have called for number 17th after first game ;) I belong naturally to any ring assured type of bandwagon man ;) This year we have THE TEAM. THE TEAM with a killer bench. We can sustain anything (excellent game analysis Mark, I can't say anything more, nor different). We are just so impressive I'm almost scared by the way we seem to roll. Sure, soon or later we will lose but that's not gonna be a drama (I know it will be here for some, but not for me at all).

(30) JOLLY RANCHER - Oh yeah, WE GOT THIS!!!
(31) MAGIC PHIL – WE GOT THIS.
(32) LAKERFANINCOWTOWN - Banner 17 will be the end result of the first 16-0 playoff run!
*______________________________________________________________*
LAMAR ODOM ALL-STAR OR BUST BANDWAGON
*_______________________________________________________________*
(01) HTJ - OWNER - But on a happier note, how about that Lamar? Finally playing ball like
we'd hoped 5 years ago. 16.6/11.4/3.6/1stl. Sounds like an all-star line to me. And that's a
bandwagon you can throw me on. LO - All Star Game or Bust!
(02) JUSTANOTHERMAMBAFAN – CO/OWNER- Alright - can someone please explain why I'm not the owner, driver and manager of the Lamar for ASG and 6th Man of the Year bandwagons?? What's a girl gotta do to get a post about LO read around here? I've been on that bandwagon since he BECAME a Laker. Geez... (03) MAMBA24 – DRIVER - Keep on Ballin LO you'll get there!
(04) 63 FOOTER – RIDING SHOTGUN - LAMAR ODOM ALL-STAR OR BUST BANDWAGON - hey,
I've been riding that little red wagon for a long time. But now, with the Worlds, I think more people
will take a look at him, and maybe the All-Star coach'll reward his efforts.
(05) JEFE101 - As far as Odom's All-Star Quest goes, "Get out of my way Saturn!"
(06) CYBERCOSMIX - L.O. all-star bandwagon: Absolutely L.O. should/will be an all-star! The Lakers should match the 4 all-star count of the '98 team (Shaq/Eddie/Nick/Kobe). How about Kobe/Pau/Drew/L.O. in 2011! Not only will L.O be an all-star, but 6th Man of the Year!!!!!
(07) DON’T BLAME DEL HARRIS - Lamar Odom. All-Star. Nuff said.
(08) PSYCHEDLAKERGIRL
(09) MAGIC PHIL-
(10) LAKESHOWINPHX - L.O. will be the next laker to get a triple double. all is good in LAKERDOM!
(11) KB2FOE - I feel like I'm on an episode of the classic tv show Wagon Train! L.O. all star? GIDDY UP!!
(12) LAKERFANINCOWTOWN - LO deserves his due - He's an all star this year or the voters need their heads checked!


I am not EVEN gonna go there. LoL. Posted by: LakerLass | November 08, 2010 at 10:53 AM
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Sorrrrrrry!...LMAO!!!
Posted by: mamba24 | November 08, 2010 at 10:55 AM

I'm justa saying that I'll let our young goddess, the divine Miss Z, paint pictures for our reader's fancy and let her do what young goddesses gotta do...

I'm justa saying that I'll let our young goddess, the divine Miss Z, paint pictures for our reader's fancy and let her do what young goddesses gotta do...Posted by: LakerLass | November 08, 2010 at 11:02 AM
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Yes and they were some wonderful pictures indeed!!!!

Our new Laker team is now the Deadly Viper Assassination Squad:

Snake Charmer: Phil Jackson
Black Mamba: Kobe Bryant
Cottonmouth: Lamar Odom
Copperhead: Shannon Brown
California Mountain Snake: Matt Barnes
Sidewinder: Steve Blake

Including my additions:

King Cobra: Andrew Bunum
Bushmaster: Pau Gasol
Krait: Ron Artest
Diamondback: Derek Fisher
Death Adder: Luke Walton
Coral Snake: Sasha Vuyacic
Pit Viper: Derek Caracter
Tiger Snake: Devin Ebanks
Black Snake: Theo Ratliff

So Association beware...The Viper Assoc. to visit you soon...Or come visit the Staples Center...The most "venemous pit" in the world.

Lakers Dynasty - The Next Generation...

#17 Coming Up!!!

Kobe/Gasol era > Magic/Kareem era.

I think in this moment his career, Pau Gasol is better than Kareem in his prime. Pau Gasol become the great PF/C in the Laker history.

Mamba, Justa, I guess frank was wrong yesterday. Posted by: LakerLass | November 08, 2010 at 10:51 AM
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WTH? AW HELL NAW!!! NO, No, NO!! Impossible!!! I suggest you recheck your stats young Lady. Obviously all this talk of The Shake and The Healing have you somewhat confused.!!!

Hey guys. A heads up. The Lakers don't have practice today. Feel free to read that as Phil being very pleased with how the Lakers are playing today, Minnesota is absolutely no threat to the Lakers Tuesday, the team has to find someday to rest or all the above. Nonetheless, that means there won't be any practice reports today. Lakers offdays are fairly unpredictable in that lots of it depends on how Phil feels the team is playing for better or for worse, injuries, fatigue, etc. When you look at the schedule, it's safe to say the team will have a day off after coming home from a road trip or there are multiple days between games. But it's something that's really not determined until that specific morning.

So with all that being said, when days like today happen, I'll fit in a Lakers blog profile since it won't get lost in any news and we'll have a chat. Let's have a chat tonight at 8:30 after MNF

WTH? AW HELL NAW!!! NO, No, NO!! Impossible!!! I suggest you recheck your stats young Lady. Obviously all this talk of The Shake and The Healing have you somewhat confused.!!!
Posted by: mamba24 | November 08, 2010 at 11:06 AM

Nope. You sir, were the one who said the Lakers would win by 12+. You sir did not live by the stats of Sunday's past. You sir, were correct. Nuff said.

Rick with the Rick! Good job.

Glad to see Pau enjoying his role, getting into it. Having Kobe right there has to be a great luxury when "leading" the team... takes all the pressure off and lets a player just play.

Phil and his response to Blake tossing it off the backboard for Pau cracks me up. You can see that he trusts Blake, but also it goes against his grain.

Rick - Welcome on your return. I'm glad to hear you're making progress and I wish you a continued recovery. I'm one of many to say that your presence is invaluable here and we appreciate you being here

So with all that being said, when days like today happen, I'll fit in a Lakers blog profile since it won't get lost in any news and we'll have a chat. Let's have a chat tonight at 8:30 after MNF Posted by: Mark Medina | November 08, 2010 at 11:10 AM
OUT FREAKIN STANDING BLOG GOD!!!

@JAMF - Haha thanks. I'm glad at least for a day I'm not accused of rigging the system. lol

MM - you can't rig density.

Umm LASS???


Granted Mamba24 said they'd win by 12, but it was me who called BLOWOUT.


Thank you very much.


:)


If Larmar plays like this consistently, there is no team can MATCH UP with the Lakers...NONE. As simple as that!! I hope to see him as an All-Star at Staples in February. Gasol is the BEST player in 2 positions in the NBA now, C and PF. I am not sure if there is anyone who could be qualified as such in the NBA history. The Lakers have the 2 most versatile big men in the NBA.

Umm LASS???
Granted Mamba24 said they'd win by 12, but it was me who called BLOWOUT.
Thank you very much.
:)
Posted by: justanothermambafan | November 08, 2010 at 11:14 AM

Ah true. I adjust (not correct) my statement. Really the point was, we didn't win by just 1.

I guess I didn't get enough sleep this weekend. :)

I myself would like to see the Profile of that wonderful LakerBlog alumnus...BABYGIRL!!! Yes the groundswell is growing through the valleys and towns one name stands out among all others and that name is...BABYGIRL!!!! If this wish were granted I believe the number of posts would exceed the 1000+ Post weekend. Everywhere I go I hear shouts of BabyGirl!!!!, BabyGirl!!!! Mamba24 we must see the Profile of BabyGirl!!!. So I'm just saying it would be such a wonderful treat for Laker Nation and the Blog in general if BabyGirl where ever she may be would send in a Profile so MM can post it.

This line-up is THE line-up for Phil to show why he is the greatest professional coach of all time. So much flexibility. This is the perfect situation for a coach to show off his creative brilliance.
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What do we play for? RINGS!!!
-
Lakers Today... Lakers Tomorrow... Lakers Forever.
-
GO LAKERS!!!

Wes Matthews on the Lakers after last night game....

They're the world champs, two times, for a reason. They played great. They're a big team, they pass well, they have playmakers and one of the best players to ever play the game. We didn't step up to the challenge."
----------------
Wes - I'm sure your Daddy could have told you all about Laker domination!

Jon K,

I've been wanting to ask you a LeBron psyche profile question, but I just don't feel like talking about him today. So I'll save it for later in the week.

Lakers baby!

@Rick Friedman - RCOTD means you're officially back and all is right in Lakerdom.

@wildone – I thought of Skynard too….8 O’clock in Boise Idaho…I got a limo driver take me to the show

@Zaira – Chiddy Bang – good stuff and cool video.

@Justa – excellent random thoughts. Now here's a one word random thought for you...PROFILE!

I've been wanting to ask you a LeBron psyche profile question, but I just don't feel like talking about him today. So I'll save it for later in the week. Posted by: LakerLass | November 08, 2010 at 11:25 AM
*
Quite right Lass!! This time should be devoted to...BABYGIRL!!!!

Mamba24..Please put me on ALL the Bandwagon's!! I just really LOVE this team!! When we move that ball around it is really an awesome thing to see. I REALLY hope LO gets to be an All-Star this year. I remember one year the Pistons had 4, maybe we can this year.. That would be fitting since it's in L.A., and Phil coaching his last All-Star Game!!

a great test and a great win. lets just keep the pressure on all of the opponents this season beginning with the T-wolves tomorrow night. regardless of our opponent's record or status in the league, we have to play them as if our championship lives depend on it and it does. by doing so, we can build a lead much faster which allows the starters to rest while giving the 2nd unit and the remainder of the bench valuable playing time; an effective bench is an awesome and necessary luxury come playoff time.
no need to worry about kobe's scoring. he's a threat and a weapon to unleash if we ever need it. right now, he should pass more, defend better and rest on that bench as much as possible in order to get healthier, stronger and become more effective whenever we need to unleash the black mamba from within!
jerry and mitch have surrounded him with everything and everyone a superstar could ever want or need: a living legend in a coach, all star caliber, HOF bound teammates and a legion of fans to cheer for him and HIS team every single game.

GO LAKERS & IN BUSS WE TRUST!! MITCH IS THE EXECUTIVE OF THE YEAR!

Mamba, careful what you wish for...

I would like to pose this question to the crue...I know it's early still, and Kobe's hurt, but someday Kobe's skills will diminish to non-superstar level. You can already see that Gasol is capable of taking on the mantle as the focal point of this offense. Will Kobe be willing to take a more permanant back seat? I hope so, because Kobe will still be devastating as a number 2 or number 3 option. I don't think he'll go the way of AI...thoughts?

Posted by: LakerFanInCowTown | November 08, 2010 at 10:38 AM
---------------------
I love Pau as much as anyone (okay well not as much as Ricky), but I don't know if he wants that responsibility. Just the other day he said he was playing too many minutes. That's not a alpha dog mindset.

LakerPeace, great post. Really, who is a better Center in the league right now (and that's not even his natural position!)? You might say that Howard is better defensively, but as much as he is gifted physically, he's a one dimensional player. Pau really has it all.

Odom is ridiculous. Never seen a 6-11 guy who can handle the ball like him. And the way he's been shooting the ball this year so far, he really can play all 5 positions!

I'm impressed that Phil didn't want to have a practice today (not even for those who logged less than 8 minutes).

Maybe the team will get another off day if they play against Minny-haha as they did against Portland.

Mamba, careful what you wish for...Posted by: LakerLass | November 08, 2010 at 11:28 AM
*
ROTFLMAO!!!! Yes Lass!

Congrats Rick - your namesake award is back in its rightful place.

Great coasting win last night, but I'm not reading into it too much. Always better to catch a team on the second night of a Home-Away Back-to-Back, than be the team being caught. Portland didn't have it last night, but I wouldn't rule them out as a threat as the season wears on.

So here's what I saw:

Great to see the starters rest, but still put up solid numbers. All 5 in double figures, triple-dub from El Pau, and another all-star line from LO. LO All-Star Game or bust bandwagon still running strong.

The Killer B's are rocking out there. Love the unselfish play from Blake and timely shot making. Shanon still going strong shows resigning him was a great move. And who new Barnes was so great a the quick putback? He looks like he should get it blocked but gets it in the hole before the defender can react. Loving his game and how it fits this team. I'm thinking it's time for a Mitch for Exec of the Year Bandwagon. Those three moves alone should solidify it.

Caracter looks like a nice fit. He's got a NBA-ready build and soft hands as well as being a willing defender. A steal late in the second round and a keeper. I'd also rather see Ebanks picking up garbage minutes rather than players whose potential is a known commodity, but I've (reluctantly) learned to stop questioning Phil. Not sure who goes on the inactive list once AB comes back, but having too many quality players is not exactly something I consider a problem.

7-0 with 75 more to go. 82-0 Bandwagon in Full-Effect!

Hey Lrob, do you think the triangle really requires an alpha dog mindset as it's focal point? Sure, it's been dominated by alpha dogs historically, but its beauty, I think, is more apparent when the post player is a willing passer. It's always good to have an alpha dog who can will a basket when the triangle breaks down. I would argue that Pau has that ability. I'm not saying it's going to happen any time soon - it just seems to me in this early season that Pau (albeit reluctantly) has the ability to be the focal point of this offense and that if Kobe, in his waning years, would graciously take a step back, we could go on winning championships for many years.

Mamba24..Please put me on ALL the Bandwagon's!! I just really LOVE this team!! When we move that ball around it is really an awesome thing to see. I REALLY hope LO gets to be an All-Star this year. I remember one year the Pistons had 4, maybe we can this year.. That would be fitting since it's in L.A., and Phil coaching his last All-Star Game!!Posted by: NewMexicoLL | November 08, 2010 at 11:28 AM
*
Good Morning NewMexicoLL. How are you this lovely Lakers post Victory Blowout day? I will surely put you on all the Bandwagons. Wow that's right Phil will be the coach if we have the best record at the all star break. Something else to play for. Yep this season is going to be outrageous! I think 4 is asking for a little bit too much though. But who know's, after all we are The Freakin 16 time NBA Campion, 4 Dynasty LA Lakers and anything is possible.

7-0 with 75 more to go. 82-0 Bandwagon in Full-Effect! Posted by: htj | November 08, 2010 at 11:34 AM
*
I like that! I'm putting it on Roll Call right now! Thanks!

LakerLass,
-
Okay. I'll be around.
-
I'm thinking it's only a matter of times before LeCreep turns into a Howard Hughes-type case.
-
What do we play for? RINGS!!!
-
Lakers Today... Lakers Tomorrow... Lakers Forever.
-
GO LAKERS!!!

mamba24,

Please place me on all the Bandwagons!

Great to see RF back!

as kobe's skills diminish, he will become more of a point guard because he has tremendous passing ability and will still remain a scoring threat which will continue to draw defenders. kobe's game is evoling today and he will still be relevant on this team for the duration of his contract and possibly beyond if he chooses to do so. Kobe has proven that he will compensate for whatever is lacking in his game a la game 7 in the finals. he couldn't score but he became a rebound machine. this season, he struggled with his shot but became a "passer." it goes on with this young man. he's never taken his talent for granted which i beleive was the most frustrating thing on his mind playing with Shaq. he's one of those players that hates to witness "wasted talent."

My son and I talk during and after every Laker game and we both agree that the B's are absolutely SUPER! How nice to see Kobe sit out (can't believe I said that, but you all know what I mean, ha, ha) and rest. Play till your at least 40 KB24!

frmkt,

Very well said my friend!

On another note, I'm not at all impressed with Miami. Bosh is undersized at the 5 spot. Wade and Lebron are only good when they are the sole focus. Also, Lebron is due for a significant injury (he's been in the league long enough for one). Mike Miller will only add to a roster already dependent on the outside shot.

Miami is just another version of the Phoenix Suns of a few years back, only without the consistent perimeter play.

frmkt,
Very well said my friend!
Posted by: D(erek)J(eter) | November 08, 2010 at 11:47 AM

frmkt, I second that. Excellent analysis of Kobe. Absolutely on point.

welcome back rick, the Lakers 7 - 0 record and your fellow Lakers bretheren has mystical healing powers! may the Lakers force be with you!

i dont understand why lebron's teams always get the exceptions to the rules, like they can have 20 players on the roster when the league max is supposed to be 15. and how Zydrunas was added to cleveland's playoff roster last year when a person traded or contracted to a team after a certain deadline cannot be added to a playoff roster.

correct me if im wrong, but it seems like there is always an exception to lebron breaking the rules.


anyways, nice win for the lakers. let's keep it up. we win the right way each year. we dont need no baby loopholes.

@Mamba - Yep I'm down with the Lamar All-Star bandwagon. We've been waiting for this LO for a long time.

Now that LO's polished up his act
and showed he's got the knack
He's ready for the Big Time...so says fellow New Yorker Rick James:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LbWqX8cdnfk

RFFTW!

Rick Friedman For The Win!

DBDH!

i dont understand why lebron's teams always get the exceptions to the rules, like they can have 20 players on the roster when the league max is supposed to be 15
Posted by: brian | November 08, 2010 at 11:58 AM

Even though I knew miami doesn't have 20 players on their final roster I decided to go to their website and look at it. (of course, now I have to gouge my eyes out - but I digress)

What I noticed immediately was that NONE of their players are smiling. They all have these stern (hah, get it? Stern?) looks on their faces. "Oh look at us. We're so mean and tough. Better watch out."

Meh

On the flip side, on the Lakers website, each Lakers player is smiling. I guess that's what real champions do.

Wow great game last night! It's so much more amazing to see live. I will definitely be finding a way to go to at least one game every year from now on!

is anyone AT ALL worried when blake has the rock?

also , it's only been a few games but 3-5 all stars this year?

First of all, let me greet my buddy Rick who is back in true form. Our prayers have been answered. Keep it up that way.

Kobe's skills have not diminished at but still @85% on knee rehab. He is still in a preseason mode. The older you get, it longer the warm-up to reach the boiling point. It appears that he is no longer desperate to be the sole scorer or shoot at will like in the past years because the rock falls into his hands on every last few seconds. He was forced to carry the load of scoring and jacks up 30 attempts per game. Today, he recognizes the talents on the floor. My dream scenario that someday LO will become a combination of "Jr-Magic and Jr-Scottie" is already happening after discovering the hidden treasures in the FIBA exposure. LO is no longer inconsistent sugar coated gunner but a real threat that commands attention from all teams. Gasol became standby Tower in the post with less efforts, no longer double teamed like in Memphis because of the Laker spacing of possible threats in the perimeter. All teams are confused who to guard in the Laker line-up. These ease in scoring were brought about by tremendous contribution of the killer bees plus the defense mentality of new Lakers. The Lakers are just an overachieving team this season diametrically opposite than the Lakers during Scrubs Era. The passing of the ball is just fantastic based on prescription of PJ and coaches, you can't ask more from it. You don't see anymore players standing around looking for Kobe (Or Farmar dribbling till it becomes a TO or Walton passing the ball at will & afraid to shoot) Therefore, Kobe's talent are in semi hibernation not needed during the season but would be available as need arises or during the playoffs. There are still 4 more players waiting on the wing eager to join in the future namely: Bynum, Sasha, Walton and Ebanks. The goal is get home court advantage and if they break some records along the way, fine. If not, lose some games but avoid injuries, so much the better. There are still so many games to be played, many months to play to say we are already there. While we are in pre-Christmas mode, let's enjoy what the Lakers bring and gifts given to them by other teams. Don't jinx it by making unrealistic predictions or over exuberance because they are winning. The mojo in every game should be: keep it up and we can be better in the next game. Anything and anytime could change in NBA if standards are lowered.

I have to believe (although many don't want to admit) that the Lakers' fast start has something to do with the Heat. I think the Lakers players (and organization and fans, including myself) took it personally that the Heat was getting all the publicity. Instead of talking about the "Lakers Dynasty," the media (and Vegas) has been fascinated with the Heat. But, I really think it is good for the Lakers. If LeBron had stayed in Cleveland, there would not have been any real challeging teams this season (I also doubt if the Celtics would have signed Shaq.) Now the Lakers are trying to show everybody who is the real team to beat, which is a good thing.

is anyone AT ALL worried when blake has the rock?

Posted by: lance from da' bronx | November 08, 2010 at 12:24 PM

________________

absolutely not!

one of the great advantages these guys have is to have so many players playing so many positions. i swear, it reminds me of the concept of total football demonstrated by johan croyft in barcelona. these guys have at least 4 guys able to play 3-5 positions

"is anyone AT ALL worried when blake has the rock?"

Blake's steal and backboard pass to Gasol made the #1 play of the DAY.

happy that Blake had a good outing against his old team.

@lakerpeace- though you make a good point about the Heat providing motivation, I think there's a much simpler explanation for our strong start. Dur
Last year our bench would consistently lose big leads and our starters would have to come back in. This year our bench is doing a much better job in protecting leads. Also, because our bench is doing so much better, our starters are getting more rest. That is leading to our starters being fresher and having more energy each game. It's a cyclical thing.

Welcome back and congrats to Rick Friedman! All is right in Lakerville!

Only two things I didn't like about last night's game. One is that Kobe got lit up on defense by Andre Miller. The other is that Devin Ebanks didn't play at all. Is Devin hurt? I cringe when I hear that Caracter and Ebanks may be sent down to the D League. I don't see much sense in bashing Sasha or Luke, but the case could easily be made that their contracts are blocking the two rookies' development.

Anyway, I guess that too much depth is a good thing and I trust Phil will do the right thing to get championship results from this crew. He's got a little experience with these type of things.

@Troy B
I absolutely agree with you. I'd have to say the points you made have much bigger impact. Maybe I was just projecting my state of mind that how much I have come to hate the Heat (as most of us) and took it personally myself. I am just HAPPY that we don't need to worry about COMPLACENCY of the Lakers team this season.

@lakerpeace- I know what you mean. The Heat made me want the Lakers to have a better season just to shove it in everyones face. Normally I'd say regular season record isn't too important to me as long as we win the title. I do think the attention the Heat is getting has provided motivation to the Lakers to not get complacent. With that said though, I think if our bench was this good last year we would have done the same. I remember us opening big early leads in most games only to have our bench blow it.

Too early in the season to tell anything right now.


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