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Caught in the Web: Reactions to Lakers' 90-87 victory over Oklahoma City Thunder

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Game stories

-- The Los Angeles Times' Broderick Turner credits the Lakers' defense in their 90-87 victory Sunday over the Oklahoma City Thunder.

-- The Oklahoman's John Rohde details how the Thunder allowed a double-digit lead to get away.

-- The Daily News' Elliott Teaford looks at Ron Artest's role in the Lakers' victory.

Notebooks

-- The Times' Turner highlights Andrew Bynum's contributions against Oklahoma City.

-- NBA.com's Randy Renner provides a few nuggets from the Lakers-Thunder game.

-- The Daily News' Teaford explains what Lakers guard Kobe Bryant picked up from Elvin Hayes after Bryant surpasses Hayes on the NBA's all-time scoring list.

Sidebars

-- The Times' Jerry Crowe catches up with former Laker Horace Grant.

--The Times' Turner credits Ron Artest's defense on Kevin Durant

Columns

-- ESPN.com's John Hollinger wonders how the Thunder will match up with the Lakers once Kendrick Perkins returns to the lineup.

-- The Oklahoman's Darnell Mayberry notices how the Thunder is preparing itself for the postseason.

-- ESPN Los Angeles' Arash Markazi and Fox Sports' Billy Witz credit Ron Artest for his defensive performance against Kevin Durant.

-- ESPN Los Angeles' Stephen A. Smith explains why Bryant isn't worried about the Lakers

-- The Oklahoman's Barry Tramel argues that the Thunder's loss to the Lakers showed why it was necessary for the Thunder to acquire Perkins from Boston.

--The Orange County Register's Randy Youngman says the Lakers displayed a few troubling signs in their win against Oklahoma City.

Blogs

-- ESPN Los Angeles' Andy Kamenetzky breaks down the Lakers' victory over the Thunder.

-- Lakers.com's Mike Trudell analyzes the Lakers' win in a running diary.

-- Silver Screen and Roll's DexterFishmore believes the Lakers have their swagger back.

-- Forum Blue and Gold's Darius Soriano says the Lakers are rounding into form.

Tweet of the Day:

"Just touchdown in minny. Damn dat cold air jus smacked da hell out of me in my face lol...Heard money grew on trees so i grew 1!" -- DevinEbanks3 (Lakers forward Devin Ebanks)

Reader Comment of the Day:

"This was a big win but the true test before the playoffs is on the horizon. Four huge away games in a row; SA, ATL, MIA, and DAL. If the Lakers can go 4-0 or 3-1 during that span, then they really have "flipped the switch" (I love over-used cliches!). Let's get it! On to the next one...." -- TNTLakerFan

-- Mark Medina
twitter.com/latmedina

E-mail the Lakers blog at mgmedin@gmail.com

Photo: Lakers center Andrew Bynum blocks a shot by Thunder center Serge Ibaka in the first half, Feb. 27, 2011. Credit: Mark D. Smith / US Presswire

 
Comments () | Archives (22)

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** REPOST**

Hi all: I missed yesterday's game. But it appears it was a total team effort. I like how everyone is writing about AB's increased activity - which is great. But given some of the highlights, I think Ron should be getting extra credit now too. That's all good.

It's very clear to me now - the TEAM is focusing in on the light at the end of the reg. season tunnel. Can we say win out?? How sweet would that be?

But back to reality, I'll setttle for a win against Minny tomorrow. A win tomorrow might be a huge accomplishment for this team since they tend to get their groove on and then "OOPS" with a crappy team.

Cheers - PLG

Mornin' CRUE!

Cyber - hope you're feeling better soon.

GREAT win yesterday!

I'm completely impressed with how good Socks has been looking lately. I'd like him to slam some home more often, but his D has been outstanding! Anyone still wanna trade him? ROTFLMAO!

I love Kobe. Completely and totally. No one better in the game. BUT - am I the only one who'd like to see a little less ISO and a lot more P&R with him and Pau? Too much ISO gives me butt cringe, but that P&R is deadly! More of that please.

Oh - and those refs.... oy vey.... I don't know how Kobe doesn't just walk off the floor. It's amazing how he channels that frustration into that Black Mamba focus. IN YOUR FACE. He's a BAAAADD mamma jamma. How blessed are we to witness his greatness?!!

GO LAKERS!!!

Any thoughts on Troy Murphy or Mike Bibby? Can the Lakers afford either of them? Can they afford NOT to get them? Discuss!


DBDH!

Cyber - Hope you're feeling better!

This was a good win. Early on the Lakers allowed the Thunder to play at their pace and fell behind. But they used their size and toughtness to stay in the game and eventually prevail. Good games from the bigs and Artest.


My only complaint was relying so much on Kobe-ball down the stretch. OKC did a good job on Kobe and had no answer for the Lakers' size. The Lakers were killing down low and moving the ball well. Yet the possessions in the last few minutes were all Kobe isolations against tough D.


I love Kobe, but his teammates have to make better decisions than giving the ball all the time and standing around.


Also horrible no-calls for Kobe on his drive to the hole (hammered!) and his "AND ONE!"


But a good win against a tough team on the road.


Did Mike Bibby get bought out? I'm not a big fan of the guy just cuz of his Sac days.

JR

When kobe is the facilitator the lakers are hard to beat. Also if you feed the beast Bynum on the offensive he will be more active on the defensive end as well. I heard on espn radio before the game the interview kobe had with Dr Jack. Kobe said to the effect that him and Gasol should get most of the shots. Ummm Bynum is getting franchise money so kobe needs to include him as well with the shots. If LA depends on Kobe shooting to win this year we will be disappointed. Get the ball to gasol and bynum and play off them.

Bynum is shooting almost 57% while kobe shoots 44%. Continue to feed the beast Kobe. Get him the damn ball Kobe like Shaq used to say. Build up his confidence cause imo Bynum is the second best center in the leahue. But he doesn't get enough touches. If he gets position feed him the ball. I am high on bynum because without him last year Boston would have wiped the floor with gasoft. We need a tough and bruising center and kobe should not be firing wild and off balance shots when we have the beast down low. That is why i never agreed to carmello for bynum. I used to call mitch Kupcake but he is more wiser than that.

Brown should definitely be a starter over DFish. But he needs to develop a mean streak to try and lock defending pgs down. Also he needs to be able to run the offense. Ron Ron played his first great game in a long while. Excellent defense on Durant. Someone made a point yersterday that when he is in motion he has a better offensive game than just standing in the corner.

Congrats TNTLakerFan!!

Congrats TNTLakerFan!!


@ISLAND PRIEST... Excellent set of posts.
...
I agree with you 100% that the Lakers need to do a better job of getting the ball to Drew, especially when he has great low post position. Not only does feeding the Beast make him play harder on defense, but he has by far the highest shooting percentage on the team. I’ve really been disappointed at how inefficient we are feeding the post, especially against teams that try to front Drew. There were at least a half dozen times in the last few games when Drew had the fronting defender sealed and should have had a lob pass thrown. There were another two or three times when Drew made a great fake and spun around for a back door lob but again no pass was thrown. And finally, there were several instances where the Lakers had swung the ball from the strong side to the weak side corner where Drew had sealed his man right under the basket ala Shaq without the Lakers giving him the ball. My complaint is not necessarily Kobe and Pau getting too many shots; it’s really Drew not getting enough touches, especially since his passing has improved a lot.
.....
I am not sure whether I would start Shannon in lieu of Fisher and if I did it would be at shooting guard with Kobe moving over to point guard because Shannon cannot really play the lead guard position. Fish has actually been playing much better lately, probably because he can smell the playoffs coming. The bigger question to me is what do we do about the point guard spot next year because Fish is definitely slowing down and we do not have a #1 draft pick for next year because we used it to make the Sasha trade to save $9M. At some point, the new Lakers’ coach next year might have to consider moving Kobe or Lamar into the lead guard spot. It’s much easier finding another shooting guard or power forward than a point guard. And while I’m hoping we will still be running the Triangle Offense, it would be great to see how a true point guard would improve it.
............................................
TOM

Thanks Laker Tom I agree with you on UPS he is a shoot first type of player. I think Kobe could be a top 5 league point guard and that will almost gurantee a 3 peat. The greatest play I saw kobe did over the last several years was against Orlando in the Finals. He came down the lane and did a 360 around Petrus. He leapt in the air and did a no look to Gasol for the jam while Kobe blocked off Howard. That was off the hook!. I think Kobe should run more point.

Congrats "TNT..."

"Winning or nothing. You get to a point when that's just the way you feel and you do whatever it takes." K Bryant

I've said it all along: all this team has to do is adopt that "by any means necessary" attitude possessed by #24 and No. 17 is in the bag! They have the talent, all they need is the genuine desire to improve and win.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M4DlfEQ7cyk

I rarely complain about the officiating but yesterday, those guys created cause for suspension. I was surprised we got that whistle in the end though because I might've put my foot through the screen! Temper, temper...

The team is on track winning the games they're expected to win. Nothing to applaud about - they're doing their job but the meat of this schedule is going to be huge with upcoming games against the Spurs, Hornets, Celtics & Magic. As far as I'm concerned, they have to sweep through all of their upcoming games right through 14 March which ends in Orlando.

During this period, I would like to see them take fewer shots from 3-pt range - especially when it's so early in the shot clock - and fewer turnovers. You can see that the team's defense is improving and I would like to see Bynum fight for better position down low in order to minimize the perimeter shots that this team seems to fall in love with.

Pau is playing great. He's getting the ball and taking it into the paint. I like that $h!t! We can see this team beginning to sharpen its focus and execution. It's been said before: it's a process and we are all "witnesses."

"Even when we didn't make the playoffs, I thought we'd win the championship." Dr. Buss

GO LAKERS & IN BUSS WE TRUST!!

agreed island priest24 - Kobe should do more play-making... how about some pick and rolls with Bynum! That kid is dying for some oops or lobs from Kobe!

The biggest consistency the Lakers have had is their inconsistency. They'll win 4-8 in a row and it looks like they're coasting to a championship and then they'll go and lose 3 out of 4 and Lakerland goes into a collective panic.

I guess we'll soon see if DexterFishmore is right about them having their swagger back or if they're due for another relapse.

@Island Priest - agree about Bynum, especially since he is also getting better at passing from the post when the double gets there to block his move. His 4 assists against the Clips and the 2 he got yesterday were almost all on timely passes he wasn't up to making until pretty recently. That means he's seeing the floor better and thinking/reacting much more efficiently. Still, the reality is that he's going to remain 3rd option whenever he shares the floor with KB & Pau.

Disagree on Brown - Shannon brings a lot to the team off the bench - his energy has been very instrumental in a lot of games this year - especially the 3rd & 4th quarter comebacks, but he still plays out of control way too much to consistently play the point. Point has to keep the offense from devolving into a series of inconsistent one-on-one possessions. I think SB is actually pretty easy to defend when he's the ball manager in the half-court offense. He's effective in transition and when he's moving off-the-ball in the half-court. Develop his game by playing to his strengths before you try to hand him the keys to the bus.

Oh, yeah - officiating...was absolutely AWFUL yesterday, especially the "Kobe sandwich" play down the stretch. The only question on that was who they should have called the foul on since both OKC players hammered KB almost simultaneously. How did THREE different officials miss this call?

As an aside, though, I think Kobe would get more calls if he could find a way to stick a cork in it and stop complaining so often. I don't think he realizes that NBA refs don't like to be shown up, and even though he is probably justified 80% of the time or more it's pretty obvious that he's not gaining any points with them by bitching a dozen or more times a game.

IMO if I were calling a game I'd take an occasional call-gripe from an established veteran player very seriously and consider it on the next play, but I'd probably get my "T-Call Dance Groove" ready to roll for someone who is constantly trying to tell me how to do my job every play on just about every night. Yeah, that would probably make me a lousy ref, which wouldn't actually DQ me from being an NBA official. But Hell, I don't like to fly all that much anyway, so I think I'll keep my day job.

"Oh, yeah - officiating...was absolutely AWFUL yesterday, especially the "Kobe sandwich" play down the stretch. The only question on that was who they should have called the foul on since both OKC players hammered KB almost simultaneously. How did THREE different officials miss this call?

As an aside, though, I think Kobe would get more calls if he could find a way to stick a cork in it and stop complaining so often. I don't think he realizes that NBA refs don't like to be shown up, and even though he is probably justified 80% of the time or more it's pretty obvious that he's not gaining any points with them by bitching a dozen or more times a game.

IMO if I were calling a game I'd take an occasional call-gripe from an established veteran player very seriously and consider it on the next play, but I'd probably get my "T-Call Dance Groove" ready to roll for someone who is constantly trying to tell me how to do my job every play on just about every night. Yeah, that would probably make me a lousy ref, which wouldn't actually DQ me from being an NBA official. But Hell, I don't like to fly all that much anyway, so I think I'll keep my day job.


Posted by: Tax Analyst | February 28, 2011 at 03:54 PM "

I agree, I don't think Kobe and several other Lakers are endearing themselves to the officials with their actions.

The sandwich play was a strange no-call but I think the "let them play" attitude of the officials was better for the Lakers than a game where every slight contact was whistled. In the end, the Lakers went into the house of the #2 free throw attempt team in the league and got more free throws than they did. OKC averages around 30 a game and they barely reached half that number.

I saw missed opportunities for easy dunks for Drew. Artest had the ball in the corner being over guarded and Bynum was being fronted. Ron passed the ball out to perimeter and Kobe dribbled and passed ball to Fish on the other side. Drew had a clear path to the basket as he was being fronted so quick pass back to Drew would lead to straight path to basket. This happened a few times. To do that would stop the fronting and easy pass to Drew for pass off for cutting Kobe.

@Bay to LA: "The sandwich play was a strange no-call but I think the "let them play" attitude of the officials was better for the Lakers than a game where every slight contact was whistled. In the end, the Lakers went into the house of the #2 free throw attempt team in the league and got more free throws than they did. OKC averages around 30 a game and they barely reached half that number. "

Yeah, you are probably right about that. Most of the current Laker squad does indeed play a physical game, especially on the perimeter with Ron-Ron, Fish and KB at the top of the list.

But it really was weird that KB did not go to the line even ONCE yesterday.

Hi Justa
Good observation on Bynum. Are they saving wear and tear on him? Why not feature him in teh offense more? He is a better free throw shooter than many other Lakers.

2 things I can't see enough of, lobs to Bynum, and Artest being a pinball in the lane.


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