Game Four Thoughts

Kurt —  April 26, 2009

Utah Jazz vs Los Angeles Lakers in Los Angeles
First, a few thoughts from our resident historian Gatinho on the stroke suffered by Tex Winter:

Tex played at USC, coached against Wilt at KSU, coached the Houston Rockets for 2 years and his offense has been the chosen offense of 9 NBA championship teams. His “overload” offense, kerned from Sam Barry at USC, was designed to break zone defenses. It’s uniqueness lies in its myriad of options that the offense can use to counteract defenses. When run correctly the defense is in a constant react mode. These options make it impossible for the other team to “jump” your play with their defense because their is no play call, only the decision as to who will be in post on the string side.

The familiar shadow over Phil Jasckson’s shoulder, Tex has been on then final ballot several times for the hall of Fame, but sadly he has yet to be inducted. in an exchange I had with Roland Lazenby, he called Tex, “The most direct man you will ever meet.”

Our thoughts and prayers are with Tex and his family. Get well Tex, we want to hear your speech when you finally and deservedly get inducted into the Hall.

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It’s good to have Kobe on your team.

There are games like this one where he does what only a handful of players who have ever played the game can do — completely impart his will on the game. Will his team to win. And he took his anger out on Ronnie Brewer, hitting his first 11 shots while Brewer was on him.

Kobe’s effort gave confidence to his teammates and suddenly everything started going right. By the second quarter the Lakers were moving the ball inside then kicking it out for open threes by Sasha and Shannon. Lakers not named Kobe shot 10 of 15 in the second quarter as the Lakers started to pull away.

The energy Kobe brought to the team carried over to the second half, and in that half the Lakers did a much better job of forcing D-Will and Boozer into the shots they are not comfortable with — the pair went 3 of 12 in the second half. The Lakers forced a lot more jump shots and the Jazz as a team were 11 of 37 on jump shots for the game.

Also, there has been lot’s of talk about the limited Andrew Bynum minutes, but Darius makes a great point about how important the depth the Lakers have is in instances like this

I think we need to understand that Phil is trying to win a series. That means that we can’t afford poor play from a major rotation player and if we have the depth to limit that guys minutes, Phil is going to do just that. Jordan Farmar can attest to how this works. I’m not down on Bynum per se, but I am upset that he’s not doing the things that he’s seemingly capable of even in his current physical state. In the end, he is young and this is his first playoff action, but he’s not even catching the ball cleanly right now. And while we can attribute slow rotations or missed rebounds to timing issues due to his recent return or being hampered by a sore knee, I think he should be fairly comfortable catching the ball. So that’s a little disconcerting to me. However, I do think he’ll get better when we return to LA and as the playoffs progress.

Kurt

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