Lakers/Celtics Game 6 Chat

Kurt —  June 17, 2008

Let’s be honest: This is the game that scares Lakers fans.

We know that the Celtics fans will come and be loud, expecting a coronation. We know that the Celtics themselves will come out and play like this is their game seven. We know it will be physical and the refs are not going to be as much help as we’d like.

We also know every game in this series has been close, and that the Lakers can win — but to do so they will have play their best game of the series.

Usually by this point in a seven-game series there are no secrets, no big matchup changes that can be sprung to turn the tide. And that is largely true coming into this game, although because of injuries and lack of execution there are some things that can be changed up for the Lakers.

On offense, the Lakers need to get to the basket and finish strong — it would be nice if Kobe could do more of that but the Celtics have worked hard to take that part of his game away. Kwame a. had a one suggestion on what to try to get Kobe going:

I think it imperative to play Kobe OFF the ball more. Whether this means cross-screens on the block to give him good post position, or running him off single-doubles on the baseline like Rip Hamilton and Ray Allen, or off the slice cut in the triangle, getting him a head-start to the basket. No matter what, we cannot stick with this top-of-the-key iso, it is asking Boston to flex its defensive prowess.

It is obvious that Odom and Gasol both need to be forces inside, both getting to the rim and on the offensive boards. They were more aggressive in game five but will have to take that to another level tonight.

Defensively, the Lakers need to play off of Paul Pierce more, make sure he doesn’t get to the rim, something coach Anthony Macri talked about at Basketball Prospectus:

The Lakers were largely successful in defending the Spurs’ side pick-and-pop action in the Western Conference Finals. However, their ability to guard high ball-screen action against an offensive player as big, versatile, and strong as Paul Pierce is has been a bugaboo for Los Angeles during this series. If they have any hope of defeating the Celtics, the Lakers must find an effective method of defending this ball-screen action. Because Garnett is such a capable outside shooter, L.A. cannot afford to trap the ball-handler. Their typical soft-hedge and fight over technique has also proven ineffective. Instead, in Games Six and Seven, expect the Lakers to find a way under the screen, daring Pierce to shoot the long jumper off the dribble but preventing him from wreaking havoc in the lane. Again, defense in the NBA is all about making choices, and at this point, with their proverbial “backs against the wall,” the Lakers have little choice but to attempt the high-risk solution.

Pierce is going to hit jumpers, he’s a great player, but fewer jumpers will fall than lay-ups. The Lakers have to force him into help, they have to be smarter on their defensive rotations. The Lakers need to take advantage of when Rondo is in the game by helping off him — but stop doing that on House.

But after five games, this game is going to come down to execution. So far in this series it is the one area the Celtics have outplayed the Lakers consistently — they have done what they wanted to do while the Lakers have seemed to take some mental vacations.

As fans, all we can do is wear our lucky rally cap, hope the Lakers execute tonight and cheer (and not some creepy government-approved cheer but something from the heart). It’s one game at a time still, for us and the team.

May the best team win tonight.


409 responses to Lakers/Celtics Game 6 Chat

  1. @188. You have the causality backward my friend. Haven’t been paying attention?

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  2. Would Chick put this game in the refrigerator yet? Please…a better effort. Play the best damn 24 minutes of ball you guys have EVER played.

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  3. why are the clippers playing tonite?

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  4. I know the Lakers derserve tremendous admiration for the surprisingly wonderful season they gave us, but this is a pathetic embarrassment on every level, every player, every facet of the game. This disgrace has left me speechless. How do you just not show up at all in an NBA Finals elimination game?

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  5. Now who thinks the Lakers have an all-star coaching staff? All at once now.

    The players are doing poorly, but Phil has stuck to his rotations and refused to adjust to the game. I really hope people roast his *** for the coaching job he has done in this series. The players lost the games, but the coaching staff didn’t put them in the best position to succeed.

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  6. How can a team, that arguably dominated just about every other team on its path to the finals, be this lackluster in the biggest stage?

    The true NBA finals, at this rate, was between Cleveland and Boston. And if I don’t see a monster half from Kobe, I’m going to say that LeBron is the better player, not Kobe.

    And it’s not going to be close, either.

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  7. UGH Assists – 5 to 17

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  8. Halftime crew, it’s not that the Celtics are totally dominating. The Lakers are playing supremely sloppy, uninspired ball. That’s the huge factor in their first half meltdown.

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  9. Zero offensive rebounds? The Lakers have not shown up to play.

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  10. HUMILITY leads to hard work on defense, up or down in a game. Lakers are not humble enough to work their asses off, no matter the score.

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  11. forget the game..i’m just going to watch the euro 2008 france/italy game on right now

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  12. The Lakers are being outhustled, outmaneuvered, and outsmarted. I’m pretty disappointed. The Celtics are the superior team.

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  13. We may be one “greatest comeback of the week” short. But I continue to watch. Anybody mention JVG going all “pure”? Made me all warm and fuzzy. Way back then.

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  14. Los Angeles is worth giving ur life for, like Pac said; To live and die in LA!!! The laker players don’t listen.

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  15. Lamar’s defense in the paint is disappointing….as well as Pau. Those 2 guys don’t have the guts to assert themselves or their games.

    I know they are both good, but Boston’s play in the paint shows that we have NO heart or pride right now.

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  16. i agree with you craig….the laker coaching staff have been as much ‘no shows’ as some of the players…

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  17. hmmmm….don’t lose hope guys lakers can still pull this off! =)

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  18. Defense requires, Sacrifice!!!

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  19. Pitiful effort from the Lakers. They should all take their jerseys off and fly the hell home. I didnt think they win tonight, but this is just a sad sorry effort on their part. I aint even watching the second half.

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  20. Don’t knock Phil and the coaching staff…it’s not their fault their players don’t have any heart. Everybody not named Kobe or Derek Fisher didn’t come to play. As much as I’d like to try to be optimistic, Andrew Bynum doesn’t mean a whole lot if your players don’t have the heart to show up in Game 6 of the Finals.

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  21. That should be “Andrew Bynum coming back next year doesn’t mean a whole lot if your players don’t have the heart to show up in Game 6 of the Finals.”

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  22. Lakerpauer and lakersfan88 are cracking me up. Lakers fans who think the league is biased…against the Lakers? Now that is hilarious.

    The Lake show is being exposed for what it is tonight. A great, but flawed system. Anybody that likes defense and team basketball should be happy with a Lakers defeat in this series. Until the Lakers learn to play better D and until Kobe learns to play team ball in times of adversity they are going to have a hard time winning it all, let alone winning the West against improving teams like Utah, Portland, Houston, etc. Kobe is the “greatest player on earth” when things are going well, but when things start to go south–like in the Q2 tonight–the guy feels his rep being threatened and starts launching anything and everything, which often just makes things worse

    Despite the likely 4-2 outcome, this series really hasn’t been close. And no the refs aren’t the reason for that…

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  23. As a lakers fan… hate to admit that but the celtics are the better team and deserve to win. It hurts so bad… especially if you are in italy and it’s 4.34 a.m. and you are going to face a tough work day but let me hug all the laker nation and send a sweet kiss to everyone. I’ll be waiting a long year to get our revenge with Drew in the mix.

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  24. My cable went out……what a blessing!!

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  25. Well, it took Boston 3 all stars to bring Kobe down… so don’t pat yourself too hard on the back Boston. Although you will probably win, I can only take solace in the fact that this will be your last title for another 18 years.

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  26. Despite the likely 4-2 outcome, this series really hasn’t been close. And no the refs aren’t the reason for that…
    ***
    Take it to Celtics blog. Don’t need that here right now.

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  27. As disappointed I am about the Lakers, I think the series was actually fairly close.

    Barring that monumental collapse in game 4, it’d be 3-2 the other way and counting the games where both teams almost came back from big deficits, it could’ve been over in 5 games either way.

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  28. …and in reality some of our losses have been very winnable. And right now, Kobe is doing anything but chucking up shots.

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  29. The Celtics D is really the best I have seen, maybe ever. But the Lakers are playing with supreme stupidity. That’s what it comes down to. They continue to make the wrong choices on offense AND defense.

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  30. As disappointed I am about the Lakers, I think the series was actually fairly close.

    ***

    If they show up for the 2nd half.

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  31. Rondo makes a jumper. GREAT. Now can please something go right for the Lakers?

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  32. i guess someboy placed that lid on this side of the basket.

    let’s go lakers!

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  33. paydawg, 7:28PM.

    I totally agree with you. I’m just going to watch the Italy vS France on ESPN2 even though I already watched it this afternoon.

    What a sad effort from the Lakers. From the coaching staff to the players, this is what defines the Kobe Bryant-led Lakers era. Failure after failure in the post season. We blow a 3-1 series lead in 2006, and we blow a 24 point lead in an NBA Finals game. I know I’m being irrational in the heat of the moment, but I’m sick and tired of trying to believe in Kobe when he jacks up jumpshots in the middle of the Celt’s run and does nothing to inspire his teammates to keep fighting. This game is eerily similar to that of Game 7 in 2006 against the Suns.

    We’ll see how we are when Bynum returns. But there was much talk about the Lakers having Phil, Kobe, Fish as people with much championship experience, yet it matters zip on the court. And I really hate the first defense when it comes to these Lakers that they are “young.” Pllleassssee. I wonder how long we’ll keep making that excuse since it’s lease expired last year.

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  34. I’m sorry for the repost, but

    Game 7 in Phoenix in 2006??

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  35. At this rate, the C’s will be in the penalty around the 8 minute mark. If we don’t take advantage, I’ll be furious.

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  36. I agree that this season has shattered all expectations I had. Even after we got Pau, I never expected us to make the Finals.

    But this series has been an embarrassment of epic proportions.

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  37. A-Hole Carolla June 17, 2008 at 7:47 pm

    I just don’t want it to end this way.

    Let’s hope they make a game out of it again.

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  38. LAMAR SOMEONE IS COMING TO THE BASKET. STEP UP AND TAKE A CHARGE JEEZ

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  39. I get the need to vent watching this level of performance, but lets keep some level of perspective. This season is not a failure. If back in October I had said the Lakers would make it to the NBA finals and lost in six games I would have been 1) mocked; 2) everyone would have taken that result in a heartbeat.

    Tonight has been frustrating, but that is a long way from year-long failure.

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  40. The lakers lack of mental toughness lost this series. Tell me why in EVERY GAME (besides Game 1), the Celtics went on an extended (15+) run during the game, while he Lakers sat idly.

    ALl their players fold. They turn over the ball, they give up, they’re lazy. THis falls squarely on Phil and Kobe. Phil calls a timeout–does he draw up a nice inbounds play to stop the bleeding? No. ANd Kobe….maybe he’s just not good enough, but he should be stopping runs at 10-1 instead of hoisting up bad shots at 20-1. Pathetic.

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  41. man, maybe it’s just me, but seems like celtics is getting all the lucky bounces around the basket.

    let’s play some d now lakers!

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  42. gasol is out of it! he’s just watching the game from on court. body language says that he’s given up.

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  43. Plus, we still don’t have an offensive rebound in this game. THats indicative of EFFORT. We lacked it.

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  44. Exactly what Kurt said in 238. We’ll be back!

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  45. I do not mind losing these Finals, because we have almost no chance of coming back.
    But why do we have to get down by 27 in the first place? Does this game mean nothing to these players? I agree that we have made great strides this season, but now that we’re here, is this the best we can do?

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  46. 222. I think the Lakers are losing all by themselves. I just don’t understand why all the coverage up to this point has been mostly about the Celtics. The only adds I see are Kevin Garnett screaming and pounding gatorade. I would have liked to see more Lakers media.

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  47. It seems like Odom gets stripped on the way to the hoop about 80% of the time.

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  48. ads*

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  49. gasol just looks like he wants to go home.

    not feeling the lakers body languages. they look tired and beat.

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  50. Fall away j’s, not what the doctor ordered.

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  51. Just pathetic. No heart. None

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  52. I don’t mind us losing.

    I just mind us not showing up.

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  53. this is an embarrassment. no defense, terrible shot selection, and just all around lack of effort. boston shooters aren’t even being contested at all. phil was totally outcoached this entire series. i know we’re not even supposed to be here, but now that we are, this just makes me want to throw up.

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  54. I seriously want to shed tears looking at the look on Mitch’s face.

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  55. timeout! get gasol out of the game. he’s not doing anything but turning in the knife.

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  56. Rondo has more steals and offensive rebounds than the Lakers’ team as a whole. In an elimination game, this has got to be one of the saddest excuse of a so-called “team” in the history of the NBA Finals.

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  57. they are playing like it’s a regular season game where they get blown out and give up. this is a finals elimination game. they need to at least make an effort and attempt to come back to at least redeem their dignity.

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  58. i hope kobe plans on taking a good shot sometime soon.

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  59. This was the kind of a game I expected from the Lakers in game 4 and 5.

    Near double-score outing.

    Wow, this has to rank among the biggest collapse ever in the finals, and I think Kobe will have a hard time recovering from this.

    STOP HOISTING 20 FT JUMPERS!

    I’m inclined to motion for the removal of him from the Olympics. Well not really, but something in him is just not wired right since the series against the Spurs.

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  60. every possession is a punch in the stomach

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  61. ok…now there’s a demonstration of “soft” gasol. weak.

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  62. Rondo is going to have a triple double consisting of points, offensive rebounds and steals.

    Hah.

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  63. what is worse? Lakers effort or los wisedom’s posts?

    lol

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  64. man… it just shows. celtics had tough road to the finals seriously fighting through adversities as they arose. i mean granted, some were unwarranted but still, having gone through those, it shows that they are more ready.

    lakers just had it too easy… everything clicked too easy for the lakers. celtics does look like they have been playing with each other for many seasons.

    hey that layup by kobe might have been the easiest basket lakers had the whole night.

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  65. Now the refs are piling it on by calling some phenomenally weak fouls on the Lakers. But seriously, the Lakers haven’t earned ANY sympathy from anyone.

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  66. None of your posts make sense los wisedom, the Lakers were brought down by their own mistakes, and their uncanny ability to absolutely quit when the other team is making a run. They turned over the ball like it was their job, got completely outhussled on the boards, and crumbled under the least bit of pressure.

    I’m not upset they lost the series–Celtics were supposed to win the championship from the day they got the Big 3 together, and throughout the entire regular season theyw ere heads and shoulders above everyone else. But the way the Lakers went out has to give you pause–the only worry is we’ll have no idea if these guys learned anything until NEXT YEAR’S postseason, because the regular season doesn’t mean squat when you’re talking about winning championships. I hope they learned from getting flat out outworked and embarrassed in this game.

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  67. 253. I can delete wisdom’s all-cap posts (and have been) but we’re stuck with this game, sadly.

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  68. this is really really embarassing.

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  69. Kurt, I’d vote to give you mod rights over this game…

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  70. dang it rad. not on the elbows. shoot from the corners!!!!

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  71. i hope they lose by 40 so that wholesale changes will be made. this is a fundamentally flawed team with suspect coaching.

    we need to move some pieces and get a legitimate second guy to take the load off kobe. this playoffs has made it clear that pau is a third banana.

    DEPRESSING. VERY DEPRESSING!!

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  72. it’s like these guys are playing together for the first time… man, this is painful to watch…

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  73. The way we’re playing, i’d think that it’s us who are up 30.

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  74. Pao first big rebound. Welcome to Game 6

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  75. A-Hole Carolla June 17, 2008 at 8:03 pm

    I don’t know how much perspective should be used to look at this. After all, the Pao trade changed all expectations.

    Our toughness and intelligence definitely have to be questioned in the offseason, in terms of whether we make any moves.

    I loved the ride, it was better than I even imagined, and I knew it would be a good one.

    This ending definitely should not be swept under the rug.

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  76. i think it’s time for a phil experiment and get the bench in there…anything.

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  77. If the Celtics can make a 26-6 run in the matter of 7 minutes, I don’t know why the Lakers can’t.

    Oh, thats right, the Celtics would never bend over and let that happen to them.

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  78. wholesale changes??? we crushed the west and just had terrible match up problems against a team w/ 3 elite players and a host of veterans…

    i want to punch boston in the face right now but come on that is a little unfair

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  79. The old +/- stat is all negatives for us and all positives for them, makes sence huh.

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  80. is it me or most of these “actual” netflix clients look slightly overweight?

    sorry totally unrelated topic.

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  81. Jerry Buss should make this team walk back to L.A.

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  82. I guess it’s more time this week for my ps3 and MGS4…..I hate this week.

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  83. i’m feeling kobe, sasha and farmar.

    but mostly kobe.

    i mean… i’d rather have the team play as a team, but since they won’te I’m ok with kobe shooting every time he touches it.

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  84. put bynum in.

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  85. I think boston could play their 10-15 and it won’t make a difference.

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  86. sweet flop Garnett

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  87. how about dj? mihm?

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  88. Just an insurance comment:
    If Kobe fuels a comeback, i’ve never said anything that doubted him.

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  89. kev, 8:06pm.

    that’s the best idea i’ve heard tonight.

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  90. Kobe, go out with guns blazing…

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  91. put mitch in.

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  92. What happend? Back to back 3s by House and Posey, and we have not recovered since. No way the Celtics are this good. this reminds me of how good we made the Pistons look in 2004

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  93. 282.LOL MGS4 rocks….. It’s the only reason I haven’t slit my wrists this week.

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  94. This sucks, but it was one hell of a year of Laker basketball. I had a great time watching this team grow into a contender.

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  95. We haven’t won a single quarter in this game.

    -4, -19, -6.

    i think we’re due a -21 fourth.

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  96. I can’t wait to have bynum back. pau needs a big brother. dude is not a 5.

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  97. This game seems so surreal to me. It’s like we don’t even belong in the playoffs, let alone the finals. When Denver had their meltdown, it wasn’t even in the same level of disasterous as this game.

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  98. does the term “pretty boys” come to anyone else’s mind every so often w/ these lakers? these guys know how to win when they’re allowed to play clean, fluid basketball. they’re gonna have to learn how to win playing rough, disjointed basketball if they’re gonna win a championship…

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  99. At Lakerpauer – Ya without MGS4…I don’t know if I could live this day.

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  100. Ok… this is it. I want someone on the Lakers to commit a flagrant the next time a Celtics player waltzes into the lane.

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  101. just did

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  102. what was that, farmar!??!!

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  103. and there it is…. but it’s one of the weakest flagrant fouls in the history of the NBA. Pretty representative of the Lakers’ series really

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  104. i take it back

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  105. It hurts me to say this but somewhere Kwame Brown is smiling.

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  106. what is the record for biggest points differential for a finals game is? are we on the verge of making history and breaking another record?

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  107. 33 is the biggest loss, celts over lakers back in the 60s

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  108. does anyone know if this lakers team is the youngest in finals history?

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  109. nah, the Bulls waxed the Jazz by about 42 one game

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  110. 304: kwame and shaq both must be like giddy children on christmas day w/ this.

    there is a lot of weak-willed men on this team. no wonder kobe b*tches them out so much. can you really blame him?

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  111. we can’t even make a layup at this point.

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  112. Is there a mercy rule? Seriously can’t we just stop this right now and hand over the trophy?

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  113. now we’re taking half court shots

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  114. This series has convinced me more than anything else that Phil Jackson has very little ability to coach defense – his team has always been mediocre at best on D unless it had more than 3 all-league defensive players.

    I repeat: the man CANNOT coach defense.

    We need a defensive specialist, PERIOD.

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  115. don’t mind me this is me just venting.

    should’ve gotten artest when we had the chance.

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  116. It was fun guys while it lasted….see yall next year!!!

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  117. hell of a game for all of their big 3 to show up.

    while none of us showed up.

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  118. that’s it guys.. we better stop dissing our team.. the outcome’s already decided.. not today, but during game 4.. it’s been a nice season.. no one expected us to come this far.. we got a very young team, and we’ve got many chances to win a title.. see you all next season!

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  119. I thought garnet had more class then that.

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  120. congrats to boston!!!! let’s hope next yeat will be much better for the lakers!!!!

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  121. Did the Cavs look this bad againts the Spurs last year?

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  122. I can’t watch this any more. My first instinct is to go down with the team and take in every last minute regardless of how hopeless it is, but you know what? I’m just can’t do it.

    I’m not going near any site that has anything to do with basketball for the rest of the summer. I’m becoming a basketball hermit until next season.

    I wish I had something more upbeat to say, but I’m practically catatonic right now. Good night. Kurt, I loved the coverage over the entire season, keep up the great work, see you next season.

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  123. disgusting. humiliating. unnerving. infuriating. maddening. pathetic. wretched. weak. feeble. dismal. that about covers it.

    between this and game 4, this team will forever live in infamy.

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  124. sigh. even tho it’s impossible to catch up, can’t someone just get pissed and just go all out? this is embarrasing..

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  125. we’re worse than the hawks. i’m sad.

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  126. RIP 2008.

    See you guys next season, i can’t watch any more. It was a great and surprising year and most of us could not have asked to be in the finals (realistically).

    That said, this game was pure heartless crap. THAT said, we had a pretty good year otherwise. Thanks for making this the only tolerable place to post Laker stuff.

    Peace!

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  127. I think we blew it when PJ and Kobe refused to move away from their triangle first and Kobe-iso Second.

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  128. i thought we might lose. i don’t mind that, but i didn’t expect embarassment and depression too.

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  129. to 319..

    It really hurts watching this game.. but please don’t compare our team to last year’s Cavs.. We’re a lot better than them, and this Boston team is a lot better than last year’s Spurs..

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  130. Oh, scrub time.

    In the finals.

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  131. run up the score, so that these young lakers will remember for years to come.

    in any case, enjoy your championship celtics. you have played a beautiful team basketball. at least in the championship series.

    i’m just sad to see lakers didn’t put up a better fight than this. it was disappointing to have witnessed it.

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  132. We’re giving offensive boards to Celtics’ scrubs.

    Not one, but two.

    Is there any pride in this team? ANY?

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  133. I hate the Spurs with a passion, but you have to admit they would have never allowed a beatdown like this in the finals.

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  134. odom showing more heart than kobe right now…

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  135. DTC, hate to burst the bubble, but historically Jackson’s teams are good defensively. Those Bulls teams, even the Lakers in the three-pete. The Lakers D was in the top 6 in the league this season before Bynum went down. It really comes down to players at some point.

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  136. 2:20 and a 38 point deficit.

    That’s 140 seconds to erase 38 points, so we need to score once every 3 seconds and stop the Celtics cold to make it happen. Since each basket is worth 2, that’s once every 6 seconds, but since we’ll need to stop the clock, they’ll shoot FTs every time we score.

    I think even if we make halfcourt shots from here on out, we can’t possibly win.

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  137. what is the record for highest points in the finals? or by a celtics team finals?

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  138. My heart hurts.

    My liver will too, in about an hour.

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  139. I think it was a great season overall IF and only IF it wasn’t the Celtics we lost to.

    Any season ending with a loss against the Celtics can’t be a great season.

    A season to feel optimistic perhaps, but I guess that’s it.

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  140. kurt, it really frustrates me that you are such a laker apologist sometimes. phil teaches good systems defense, but is a big fat failure when it comes to making NECESSARY in-game, and game-to-game adjustments.

    the man has been completely pantsed in this series. by doc fricking rivers. sheesh. that is beyond pathetic.

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  141. So, how many of you bet on a 40 pt blowout?

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  142. kurt – can a blow out of this magnitude REALLY be all on the player’s shoulders? coaching has a decent amount to do with it, imo…

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  143. I know Shaq enjoyed this game.

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  144. still jacking up threes? wow, classless celtics.

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  145. can’t believe the vegas line was celtics by 3.5 points.

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  146. oh wells, celtics played their game. we just didn’t play ours.

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  147. Well, we wasted a game with the first reply by Warren, among other things.

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  148. Kc, i’d be happy if it was just a matter of not playing ‘our’ game. Not even sure if they played at all.

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  149. barry g, there was a saying that says “less than 7 points, it’s on the coach; more th an 7 points, it’s on the players”

    The C’s clearly roughed us up, took us out of our ball game. If anything, this was reminiscent of what the Pistons did to Jordan’s Bulls.

    I believe congrats are in order for the Celtics. We’ll see them again next year though. And the result won’t be the same.

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  150. This hurts. Much more than when I broke up with my ex.

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  151. Depressing series. I guess the problem with overachieving is that you loose sight of where exactly you started.

    Maybe winning the NBA finals was too Hollywood even for the Lakers.

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  152. hertagnism,

    point taken. i don’t know, though; throughout this series, just never seemed like the team was prepared to do battle. maybe they were coached enough and just weren’t equipped individually to handle the challenge? in any case, hope our weaknesses get identified and addressed over the summer…

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  153. Kurt, I just wanted to thank you and the regular posters for making this such a great season.

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  154. Yea, Congrats to the Celtics, see you all next year.
    Thanks Kurt, for the forum for us Laker fans.
    Kurt, what does this forum do during the off season, do you shut down or what?

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  155. i second tony b’s comment. kurt and all the regulars – you guys were awesome to read throughout the season, and i look forward to our team’s bright future.

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  156. 352 – It actually becomes a Hannah Montana fansite – we have meetings and everything.

    In all seriousness, thanks to all for a good season, and see you next year.

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  157. i’ll be honest, the way how this season unfolded, it’s hard for me to be excited for the next season.

    i feel like we’ve come too far just to have such a huge letdown.

    someone mentioned detroit doing to jordan, this reminds me of what the pistons did to the lakers when we had malone and payton.

    so sad. but trying to stay positive.

    thanks for the forum kurt! where do we go from here? hiatus for a few months?

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  158. As a Celtics fan for just over 9 years, I think the Lakers with an improved defense could have done much better than this. However, LO disappoints me (thought he should be much better than this); I’ve watched him a lot when he was on the Clippers before.

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  159. I suppose this is better than losing in the first round.

    Hopefully Bynum is a beast next year and Pau grows some balls.

    We all know the Lakers are held to a higher standard. We had a good growing year. Jordan, practice all summer. Sasha, shoot your J. Kobe, do what you do. This is a stepping stone. Next year, domination.

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  160. How much longer till we get the first trade speculation comment?

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  161. you know kobe will be hitting the gym tomorrow, and will get pau to hit the gym with him.

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  162. This series reminded me a lot of the 2006 choke job against the Phoenix Suns. Phil implemented a strategy that seemed to work and tried to use the same strategy this series–yet both times, the strategy failed. The difference between this series and the first three games of the 06 series, was that the Lakers failed to attack the rim and execute. Heck, the Lakers didn’t do much right. Transition defense and ball movement on the offensive end were the top priorities, and those ended up being their most glaring weaknesses and on the opposite end, Boston’s greatest strengths. That’s how we lost this series.

    Before anyone starts to put the blame on Phil, think twice. You really think subbing MBenga for Mihm would have made a difference?

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  163. EVERYONE needs to hit the gym tomorrow. practice defensive rotations until october.

    shoot, i think i’m gonna hit the gym too…

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  164. Guys, thanks for the kind words. This place is a fantastic community because of what all of you bring to it, and that is what makes it fun for me.

    We keep going during the summer. The rate of posts slows a little to three or so a week rather than almost daily, but we talk free agents and team moves, plus a little more general NBA stuff. This summer I’ll also do a lot of Olympics/Team USA coverage and talk.

    Plus, we have to do detailed breakdown of what to do with that #58 pick we have in the draft 🙂

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  165. Lakers laid an egg tonight….

    Made me depressed of how they didnt try to fight back like boston did and everyone should respect how they fought in game 4 and unlike LA did today.

    This hurts, but theres much to learn from this.
    Were a young team, and theres definitely lots to look forward to for next year.
    LASTLY, i wanna thank the Lakers for putting up a great season, but just came up short. Nobody expected a season like this and being 2 wins shy isnt too bad…though i wish we could have pulled it off.

    Im already looking forward to next year were we (hopefully) are healthy towards another championship run.

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  166. 360. It’s up about 5 seconds before I delete it.

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  167. I think i need a ‘season in hindsight’ type of post highlighting all the good things that happened.

    If somebody told me at the beginning of the season, that you had two options, one to just see how the team does and another to have the team lose by 39 in game 6 of the NBA finals, I probably would have taken the latter.

    As a team, now we witnessed and experienced first hand what it takes to win a championship and what it takes to compete at the highest level. We probably need a coach dedicated to scouting and team-specific defense as well.

    I’m not sure if i want to tinker with the lineup, we’re at least good enough to get here, and certainly were good enough to win 3 games though we only won 2. Just wish that this 39 pt loss was our first not our fourth, our 24 pt disaster our 2nd not our 3rd.

    Anyway, if we don’t make any rushed trades (thankfully Mitch isn’t one to pull them) we’ll have a balanced team that can match every other team’s style, be it bruising or finesse. Sasha will not find many suitors we can’t match, Farmar will improve, Luke, Mihm and Ariza will recover, and Vlad can’t be any more inconsistent and spaced out as he was this season.

    So there is optimism…

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  168. nice post Marrl. I agree with you, but couldn’t put that into words myself.

    Even if the loss seemed inevitable, put some heart into it like Celtics did game 4.

    Once it stops hurting, I will be looking forward to next season!

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  169. Oh and thanks Kurt for making a website that lets us Laker fans share our thoughts and opinions.
    Im a little late, but congrats for your new born child.
    Have a good summer everyone!

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  170. laughing hard June 17, 2008 at 9:18 pm

    I want to second what has been said here tonight — this site has been a wonderful community this season, and I feel a little proud to be even a small part of it.

    Kurt — you rock.

    We all wish that this series had gone differently, but our guys will be back in force next season, and I, for one, can’t wait.

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  171. Phil (and Tex) have said that the defense flows from the triangle offense working well. After this finals (and ’04), it is clear to me the Lakers also need a defense that is independent of the offense. The last two finals losses showcased teams that could stymie the triangle. And that also stymied their D. Thus, by only focusing on one side of the game a team could beat the Lakers. I think the term for that is target loading.

    The Lakers need to know how to defend after an offensive miss, when they’re out of position at the start of transition. How to recover and reset quickly on the fly.

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  172. BTW guys, my wife, who’s been expecting for about four months now, and I decided while watching the WCF to name our baby Hope.

    God help the kid if its a boy.

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  173. A-Hole Carolla June 17, 2008 at 9:24 pm

    I would suspect coaching would be a factor in this too, but I don’t know.

    I don’t see how the same defensive mistakes and horrible offensive strategy could happen over and over and over again.

    I don’t know.

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  174. Great season, and it was very fun to share it with all the great FBG Laker fans from last summer (and years before) through this June. We will be back, we will be bigger, better and well-tested. Hopefully some of the new faces stick around over the summer. We will debate who our 2nd round draft pick should be, who we should throw the mid-level at, and argue everyday about why Lamar should not (or should) be traded. Cheers to Kurt for making this happen, and a begruding congratulations to the Celts.

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  175. one positive to take from playing this deep into the playoffs, we don’t have so long to wait until next season!
    I for one, am really looking forward to training camp, pre-season and 2008/09 NBA basketball, with a healthy team, it will be a fun year and lots to look forward to.
    now, at least I can get some work done.
    thanks Kurt, been a great year, a phemon for sure.
    as you know, I’ve been around here for years and will stay around for the off season and the very good Laker years to come!
    enjoy the baby, get some sleep when you can.
    all the best to you mate.

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  176. I’ve been a Laker fan since ’71 and I’m sorry but it’s time to face some harsh realities about this team. All championship teams have common traits.
    1. A talented leader who also makes his teammates better in practice, games, and offseason. See Magic, MJ, Bird
    2. A 48-minute intensity from buzzer to buzzer. The 80s Lakers had no qualms about destroying teams by 40. Don’t get mad at the Celts for pouring it on, that’s their job. It’s the Lakers job to compete.
    3. A starting front court who controls the boards and doesn’t assume the fetal position on basketball’s biggest stage. Yes, I’m throwing Gasol, Odom, and spaceman under the bus. They disappeared!
    4. Don’t make Andrew Bynum’s absence an excuse. Even if he were playing, the Lakers still lose the series. Perhaps it goes 7 but they lose because Boston had a champions focus. Let’s be honest folks this series could’ve easily been 4-0 Boston sweep. All year the Lakers focus has come and gone.
    5. We need a defensive Chaucey Billups type point guard who can at least make Deron Williams, Tony Parker, and yes even the unstoppable Rajon Rondo work hard.
    6. Two or three veteran bench players to balance out the talented but young guys who had a deer in the headlights look.

    I have always loved this team and I always will. I know that they made a great leap forward this year but I’m not satisfied and neither should any passionate Laker fan.

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  177. I join all the appreciation for Kurt and this site. I only found it in the playoffs and was so struck by the quality of the discussions and the moderating, unlike the ESPN board which is just… well I won’t go there.

    The pain from this game has not gone away, but I can hardly wait for next season and watching Bynum’s full recovery!

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  178. Brutal game, obviously, but the future seems bright. If you look at the NBA since the end of the Lakers-Celtics dynasties in the 80’s, virtually every strong team has had to go through at least one, and usually several near-misses before taking the title (examples inlcude the Bad Boys losses to the Celts and Lakers, the Bulls struggles against the Pistons before their run and the Shaq/Kone Lakers losses to the Jazz, Spurs, etc).

    None of the Lakers other than Fisher and Kobe have ever played games near this magnatude before and they were overwhelmed by the moment. Hopefully that will not be the case next year. When you combine that experience with our young bench spending a summer getting better and the hopeful return of Bynum I think there is a decent chance that we’ll look back at this day as a stepping stone to greatness.

    I’ve only recently begun to follow the posts and comments on this site but I’ve been really impressed by the quality and tone here. Thanks to Kurt for providing such a forum.

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  179. I want to thank Kurt for all his hard work and thanks to all the other posters.

    Also, props to Craig W, Kurt and others who said that the Lakers should give the young guys a shot. It was a great year.

    Congratulations NBA Champion Boston Celtics.

    That said, coming from a guy who has been a Laker fan since he was 6:

    Phil Jackson should not be given a pass on this game or this series. 131-92 is inexcusable. Losing a 24-point lead at home is inexcusable.

    Wholesale changes? Of course not. A few tweaks–yes, without question, both on the roster and maybe on the staff.

    And, I have said this elsewhere for years but not here: Kobe Bryant is great. He is not the best player in the NBA, and never has been.

    Go 2009 Lakers.

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  180. This season was like eating a fine meal at a 5 star restaurant and them having a soft serve frozen yogurt for desert. Anticlimactic. Soft.
    I’m glad the Lakers got their asses kicked in this manner. If they would’ve played a good game tonight and barely lost they would still think that they were mentally tough enough to win it. They are not.
    This team is soft. There is no interior toughness. There is no NASTINESS. ZERO. And Bynum won’t really change that.
    They clearly were out hustled. They played with not heart.

    I hope this stings really bad.

    Remember 1984.

    That ass whooping lead to 1985….and redemption.

    I pray that they have that kind of pride and work ethic.

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  181. Thoughts going forward into next season.

    1. with Andrew Bynum back. how is odom gonna handle coming off the bench?

    2. I Expect Kobe’s best basketball ever. (paul pierce pretty much set a fire under kobe during this year. he outplayed and i think the mamba try to return for next season that much better.

    3. maybe we’ll see some sun yue? lol. 6’9” point gaurd… remind you of anyone? okay soo i might be a bit too optimistic but you never know 😉

    4. I wonder who we’ll get for the space cadet. i mean sure he shoots the ball well but everyone on the lakers does that. he’s too much of a defensive liability.

    5.
    Starting lineup –
    PG – Farmar
    SG – Kobe
    SF – the machine
    PF – Gasol
    C – Bynum

    =[

    these next five months are gonna suck!

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  182. Pau needs to hit the weights. One of our SF’s will not be with the team next year. That being said, great season, exceeded everyone of my expectations. Will be checking the site frequently this summer, especially when the free agent period opens. Hopefully we can get a nice piece with our MLE.

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  183. Even though we lost in the Finals this was an excellent year. We made it through the the toughest Western conference races ever and were only two games short of a championship. This all despite being one of the youngest teams in the league and having key losses and additions mid-way through the season. The Celtics were built to win this year and they did it. We are going to contend for a title for the next 4-5 years if not more.

    I’m looking forward to next year.

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  184. Thank Kurt and guys for letting me come on this boardas a Celtics fan.

    I think the Lakers need to make some moves, but it’s just on the peripherey, nothing major.

    Bynum will help, but you got to get a rugged athletic at small forward. Vlad and Sasha just are too soft and don’t do what’s needed. This is where you got killed.

    Artest would be a great addition. At least he brings some stones to the team. Should start Farmer next year. Everyone else on the bench is terrible IMO.

    Odom? Fools gold. Got to get a rugged SF first, and some inside beef to go with Bynum.

    Take care guys, and congrats on a great season. Well see you xmas day.

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  185. It’s all about match-ups and team D. You guys didn’t match up with the Celtics in the regular season or the playoffs. And your D wasn’t that good.

    I was rooting for you – sorry you guys got taken to the cleaners.

    Good luck next year.

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  186. The Celtics needed this win more than the Lakers and played like it. But this was a GREAT year to be a Lakers fan, overall:

    The development of Bynum, Farmar, Sasha and Turiaf… Fisher’s return… Kobe’s MVP play and acceptance of his role as a leader… the Ariza trade… the Gasol trade… winning the West in the regular season… beating 3 good teams (including the defending champs) to advance to the Finals… Playing the Celtics for the first time in 21 years and holding their own in 5 of the 6 games.

    I’ll take the 2007-2008 Season over the last 5 seasons in a heartbeat!

    And, as I wrote in a previous comment, this series was a Master Class in Dynasty building. The Lakers weren’t up to the job yet. But next year they will have their starting center back, all of their young players will be a year older and wiser, Gasol will have a full training camp to learn the triangle, Ariza will be healthy and ready to anchor the perimeter defense of the second unit and the entire team will be hungry and ready to take their place as champions for years to come. The future could not be any brighter and the sting of this loss will prove to be a lesson that our boys will not soon forget. With Bynum holding down the middle, the interior defense will improve and the rebounding will go through the roof. Even if we play the exact same Celtic team (cryogenically frozen to preserve the older players) the outcome next year will be totally different.

    Let’s all just pray for health and a speedy recover for Kobe’s (soon to be surgically repaired) hand.

    I still believe!

    GO LAKERS!!!

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  187. Kurt, congratulations again for the blog. This is a wonderful site where everybody can share his thougts.

    Right now I’m destroyed about the way we loose this finals. Maybe later when I wake up (it’s 1.55 AM in Argentina and I need some rest cause I’ll be up about 6.30) I can write something coherent…

    I know we desagree about the future of this team (and I’m praying for your theory about the future of this roster but every minute I’m most concerned about the luck of character they showed)…

    I’m not a regular writer but I read everything you and all of the people who made this a “must read site” every day (and I learn from you too).

    See you later… And I’ll be ready to post with my “strange English” during the Olympics if I can wath the games (man, the World Championship in Japan, the Olympics in China… I’ll be a sleepwalker by August).

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  188. Kobe’s going to be doing post-game press conference on NBA.com in a minute.

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  189. Wholesale changes are NOT needed. If Andrew continues to progress and they can sign a veteran big, the D should be fine.

    Farmar needs to improve, Derek will be 34 and should play less than 30 minutes next year.

    They need to upgrade at the 3. Luke is interesting but just doesn’t contribute enough. Vlad just isn’t consistent enough. Don’t know about Trevor yet. Perhaps a Cook and Evans type trade can be made next year.

    With the Olympics, Kobe’s minutes must be monitored next year. The supporting cast must come through in the first part of the season to keep the Lakers in a good playoff seed position.

    I remember 1984 and 1986. Redemption is sweet. Can’t wait for next year!

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  190. Just a last thought….

    San Antonio will be back with there big 3…but need to get younger.
    Dallas is too soft in my opnion…
    Phoenix is getting old but has a bright star in Amare.
    Houston cant get over the hump..(though Yao wasnt there to do anything this year) so ill let them slide..

    Utah could be scary…
    New Orleans has the best PG
    Portland gets Oden and is probably the most talented team other than the lakeshow.
    Overall, the West will be reloaded and ready to dethrone the Western Conference champs…but if healthy, they will repeat in my opinion(depending on how the roster changes in the summer). Looking forward for next year like i said.

    Anyways, sorry, just wanted to already think about next year…cause right now today was a terrible day to cheer for the Lakers.

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  191. lakers need to focus on their DEFENSE first and foremost for next year. everytime someone asks phil jackson about the play of the lakers he attributes the poorness to offensive execution.

    i’ve heard many tv analyst talk about how good offense beats good defense any day. they should be more specific, good individual offense beats good individual defense any day yes, kobe can score on any individual defender any day. But the truth is good team defense beats good individual/team offense, and we saw that plainly in this series.

    radmonovic is the worst defender ever.

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  192. Celtics win number 17 on the 17th of June with their MVP, #34 (Two times 17) going strong and with the Lakers missing their young stud Andrew Bynum (#17). I should have seen it coming. And by the way, this is Phil Jackson’s 17th year as an NBA head coach.

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  193. Whew….that Kobe post game was sure depressing. But he didn’t throw anyone under the bus but you’re sure gonna have people try and make it seem that way.

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  194. While I agree that we could make some minor moves to shore up a few things here and there, I’m really more curious about the natural development of our young team. A lot of the young guys (Drew, Farmar, Sasha, etc.) made huge leaps from last year to this year and if they keep at it they can get better. I don’t think any of them have hit their ceiling yet.

    As much as we missed Bynum, I think a healthy Ariza this series really, really moves things along. He’s a guy who will scrap for boards, play good D, and finish around the rim when he’s healthy. I’m interested to see how Drew and Pau play off each other, since it has the potential to be really, really exciting.

    I think what we missed the most in this series were scrappy guys, the guys willing to dive for loose balls, crash the boards hard, play solid D, close out shooters and clean up the garbage around the rim. We really had no one willing to do those tasks, and it showed. Hopefully Drew and Ariza fill those roles nicely next year.

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  195. Such a bummer, but a poetic ending, I think.

    As one of the other posters noted, so much of the defensive edge in the triangle is dependent upon the offense. Kill the triangle and you kill the Lakers. Boston figured this out and plays true team D in terms of closeouts, spacing management and isolation avoidance.

    The riddle for PJ in the off-season is with the the West getting so much better, and Boston and Detroit being strong D types of teams, you need to have a DIFFERENT LOOK for when the opponent is crushing the triangle.

    For all of the talk that PJ made after the Gasol deal about all of the different styles the team could play depending on the opponent, there really was only one look that the Lakers threw out there.

    It’s like the fastball pitcher who needs a second or third killer pitch to be lethal.

    All that said, I was actually pretty serene as the Lakers were getting killed. Why? They go into the offseason with no illusions that another year of the same pitch is good enough to win the championship.

    And you know what, as hard as that truth is, they are pretty darn close to phenomenal if they can figure out the above riddle, and pick up an off-the-bench gamer or two (ala Posey) during the offseason.

    Honestly, I never understood why the Lakers were so heavily favored, as much as I love them and as proud as I am of their accomplishments.

    It is generally a truism that the best D beats the beast offense.

    Nothing should take away from a great year, though, albeit one with a very sour ending.

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  196. Also, it would be great if Kurt could refrain from having a kid in the next few years. That should give us a chance at a potential dynasty.

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  197. Honestly, I never understood why the Lakers were so heavily favored, as much as I love them and as proud as I am of their accomplishments.

    ***

    Me too. It was a combination of the playoff records, people believing KB was like MJ, and the fact that it was the LAKERS. Another franchise with the same personnel and one-season back story would have been an underdog.

    Bynum and Ariza, are , indeed, the keys to the 2009 team–that and trading Radmanovich for a scrapper.

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  198. i think we should get rid of the triangle when we need to. Like in this series. The Lakers need to learn how to play another type of offense also we need an enforcer type player on our team to give us some toughness.

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  199. Congrats to the Boston fans you had the better team this year. It was a great season for the Lakers and the really got hurt by not having a consistent low post game established. I hope both teams stay roughly the same and this could be another matchup for the next couple seasons.

    Except of course dump radmanovic and his god awful salary.

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  200. 398) It wasn’t the triangle, but the players playing in it the triangle that failed to step up. The triangle got the Lakers through three rounds of the playoffs, but the Lakers forgot how to play ball in the finals.

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