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Gatinho —  December 9, 2006

“Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall”


The uneven play of a young but talented team is a frustration that can sometimes be hard to bear. You see the potential and the flashes of continuity. Sometimes, as happened last Wednesday, you see that potential manifest itself throughout the course of a ball game. But losses to teams like the Bucks and Hornets are gut punches that can be tough to recover from.

The sign of maturity that can be a help in that recovery is the Lakers 5-1 record after losses. The next step would be to avoid losses to lower echelon teams altogether, but even the Spurs have losses to Golden State and Charlotte. More on that tomorrow.

Zoned out: When the Hawks finally went zone in the third quarter, someone forgot to tell Lorenzen Wright, who followed Kwame through the paint leaving Mo Evans to run to the open spot, and causing Josh Smith to have to run over and commit a foul. Camera close ups and courtside microphones caught Smith saying to Wright what we all already knew, “It’s a zone. It’s a zone.”

Ewing effect in effect: Don’t tell me that career highs for Mo Evans, Luke Walton, and Jordan Farmar would have happened if Kobe had dragged his leg out onto the court last night. More distressing was hearing from Jack Haley, who usually causes me to dive for the mute button, that Kobe said he “wished he hadn’t played” against NO/OKC because it “did more damage” to his ankle. A Kobe-less win, and there have been three of them now, does more for the development of this team then what happened against the Hornets.

Westphal said it best when he commented that it doesn’t do the team any good “if Kobe drags his leg out there just to show how tough he is.” Maybe that wasn’t his sole motivation, but there was definitely some machismo involved in his decision to play.

Smush v. Farmar debate: …can end when Phil explains in the postgame news conference that he has:

“…had a number of teams in which guards have split minutes, and I’ve been very happy with it. It gives us an opportunity to play with more momentum and energy out there, particularly in that position, which has to be real active, and we like to get up and put some pressure on the ball.”

Trust the LA media?: Last week Roland Lazenby was kind enough to respond to a comment I made concerning his coverage of the Lakers being an alternate and more insightful source than the LA media. He responded by defending the competence of the LA media, which you can imagine sparked some lively comments. The ensuing discussion is worth a read