Preview & Chat: The Los Angeles Clippers

Kurt —  January 6, 2010

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Records: Lakers 28-6 (1st in West) Clippers 15-18 (12th in West)
Offensive points per 100 possessions: Lakers 108.6 (11th in league), Clippers 104.4 (23rd in league)
Defensive points per 100 possessions: Lakers 100.6 (2nd in league) Clippers 107.1 (18th in league)
Projected Starting Lineups: Lakers: Derek Fisher, Kobe Bryant, Ron Artest, Lamar Odom, Andrew Bynum
Clippers: Baron Davis, Eric Gordon, Rasual Butler, Marcus Camby, Chris Kaman

Site Work Warning: I was just informed by my server host that this site will go down just after 10 p.m. tonight for some server work. I’m not thrilled, and have expressed my displeasure, but it’s going to happen. So know it’s not you, it’s me.

Bring Lawyers, Guns and Money: If there is one thing that will get David Stern to act, it’s when his league becomes the target of late night comedians. Or when, as Tom Ziller put it, you have a gun charge then have “The Finger Shots Heard ‘Round the World.” Stern has made it is mission to change the “NBA players are all thugs” perception and when somebody brings out guns in a locker room, they are in a heap of trouble because of it. You can say that the NFL and MLB deserve the thug reputation more than the NBA all you want, that is not the perception around the nation. So when someone goes and reinforces the stereotype — and breaks gun laws in the city with some of the strictest gun laws in the nation — you had to know the big hit was coming. And I just don’t have a lot of sympathy, guns in the locker room are just a bad idea.

Lakers coming in: If you’re going to have a back-to-back, this no-travel one is about as good as it gets. That said, no Gasol tonight, so expect the same Lakers lineup. Hopefully we can see the same level of defensive effort, because that is what keyed last night.

Stat Heads, you don’t want to miss Kevin Pelton from Basketball Prospectus talking with Mike Trudell on the Lakers podcast.

The Clippers Coming In: This team is playing some of its best basketball of the season, are 5-5 in their last 10 having won four in a row at Staples and notching an impressive win over what’s left of the Portland roster in their last game.

Chris Kaman has become the Clippers offensive focal point — he is averaging 23 points and 10 rebounds a game in the last team’s last 10 games, plus he is pulling down 10 boards per contest. So easy, even a Kaman can do it. Kaman is underrated — he can score with either hand around the basket and has a mid-range face-up game that has become a steady weapon (you know, all the things we want Bynum to do). And, he has stepped up to the challenge of being the offensive focal point.

Baron Davis and Eric Gordon have been each scoring 16.3 per game the last 10, although Gordon is the only one of the two you need to really fear from beyond the arc. Then there is Marcus Camby, giving the Clippers 13 rebounds and 2.4 blocks per game in the last 10. He loves to come from the weakside, so any Lakers driving the lane need to be aware.

By the way, I still think three years from now we will think of Blake Griffin as the best out of this draft class. He’ll get a chance to start proving that in about three weeks.

Reading up on the Clippers: Two great Clippers blogs out there: Kevin at Clipperblog (and his team of guys) just continue to amaze, while Steve and the guys at Clips Nation continue to put up great post after great post.

Keys to game: The Clippers are not a team that the Lakers can sleep on and get the win — they have talent and have been putting it together lately. Remember, a couple weeks ago they beat the Celtics. They have won three of four and still harbor dreams of a playoff slot. If the Lakers take this game lightly they will lose.

The marquee matchup tonight will be between two guys who think they should be the backup All Star center in the West — Kaman and Bynum. (Marc Gasol would like to be in this conversation, too, even if he is not playing in this game.) It will be interesting to see if Bynum’s length bothers Kaman, and if Kaman’s size and strength will bother Bynum and not let him make his moves in the post as smoothly. Also, with Camby, the Clippers have the size along the front line to bother the Lakers, and they are one of the few teams that do.

What the Clippers run is not complex, they just rely on execution, particularly from Davis and Gordon. Which is why things can be spotty. They run a lot of the double high post (big at each elbow) where Davis/Gordon can choose their side for the pick-and-roll. The Lakers bigs need to step out and defend the penetration but keep an eye on their man (Camby and Kaman can both pop off the pick and take the midrange shot), the Lakers need to make smart switches. All of which the Lakers did last night, but expecting consistency never seems to go well. Plus, when Davis and Gordon are making good decisions and hitting their shots, the Clippers can be tough to defend.

Last meeting, the Clippers bench dominated the Lakers bench, outscoring them 29-9. If the Lakers are going to win this one, they need to keep that number close.

Especially since running their offense through Kaman, the Clippers play at a slow pace. And their guards can turn the ball over a lot — the Lakers need to force some of these turnovers and convert them into easy baskets the other way.

Both of these teams defend the three point line and at the rim well, which keys their defenses. If one team lapses in those areas tonight, it will be a big swing.

Where you can watch: 7:30 p.m. start on KCAL 9 here in Los Angeles, ESPN nationally and of course ESPN 710 radio.



149 responses to Preview & Chat: The Los Angeles Clippers

  1. Isn’t it on KCAL?

  2. maybe someone can help me out here…
    suspended without pay indefinitely, for the rest of the season(?) I guess they mean unless there is a ruling from the legal system that he is somehow innocent(?)
    so, assuming he’s suspended, then proven guilty, is this when the Wizards can revoke his contract? (or can they revoke it now?)

    by the way, what is the total amount he stands to lose if the worst case scenario plays out?
    I read he was due $16Million this season, so, that’s gone.
    but what’s left on his contract?
    could this be the biggest loser in the name of sports?
    does Tiger’s losses come close or exceed?


    • Chris H., it is possible the Wizards could void the 4 years, roughly $80 million Arenas is due after this year, and I expect they will. Less for the morality of it and more for the “he is vastly overpaid” reason. They clear up a lot of space that way, you can bet the owners are itching to do this.

  3. This one’s for Warren! 🙂

  4. this is a good site to compare individual positions etc.

    and our SG position is the 1st and PG position is the last:( no suprising, i guess)

  5. Kurt, it’s so funny you made that “it’s so easy, even a Kaman can do it” remark, because every time I watch Kaman play I swear I am seeing the closest thing possible to what a real caveman looked like. The profile for his skull is about as close as you’ll find to any fossils on record.

  6. dang, if I’m an NBA player, I’m ebaying all my firearms*. don’t want to risk the temptation.

    * j/k. that’s ILLEGAL, in case any NBA player is reading this!

  7. thanks Kurt, so if you add in the $16M he was due for this year, (pro-rated for the games played so far) he stands to lose $80M plus $16M, almost $100M.
    ouch, I wonder if he was saving any of the money he’s earned so far.
    think he’ll ever play in the NBA again?
    I bet some of his posee are sweating it right about now, time to cut some payroll in Agent Zero camp.
    I bet his agent is also seething at the ignorance of all this.
    ouch again.
    at least it’s not compounded with a divorce like in Tiger’s case. I think Tiger still can claim the crown for biggest loss for ignorant behavior.

  8. I saw Boom Dizzle/B-Diddy/whatever Baron goes by these days last night at a Coffee Bean. Hopefully the sugar/caffeine mix made him lose valuable REM sleep. I don’t want to witness him go off for 40+ on us tonight.

  9. The Lakers haven’t lost to a really bad team yet. At some point they will. I’m thinking tonight may unfortunately be that point.

  10. someone got a summary of mamba’s new skin on espn?

    My guess is the answer will be Yes he changed for the better

  11. The only signed NBA jersey and signed shoe I own are Gilbert’s. He had an early-bird thing a couple years back where the first to log in his site after 6am would get them for $25. Thanks to the time difference, that worked out to around 8 pm local time for me, and I easily got the deal after getting from work and having dinner 😉

    Ever since, I’ve been a fan of his, and his blog, so it saddens me that he’ll be gone. I liked his addidas ad, I liked the little thing he had going with his college teammates (Jefferson and Walton? I forget).

    Clippers, I am not sure if I remember correctly, but weren’t they the team that posted the least points in a quarter against us? Wasn’t that this season? If it was, I’m sure they’ll be really amped to play us.

  12. Before his injuries Arenas was my favorite non-Laker in the NBA. He was a great scorer who was very entertaining on the court, and off the court he was a fun personality. Hopefully he can put in his time on punishment, learn his lessons and be back in the league again soon – hopefully on a bad team in the east again. The NBA is more interesting when he’s playing.

  13. WOW

    Heat/Celtics Update:

    Heat down 2 with 20 seconds, Pierce airball, Dwade fouled on break, sinks two free throws to tie with 5.6 left, inbounds to Ray Allen, stolen by Wade who dunks with .6 left, Celtics throw alley-oop inbound to Rondo to tie…overtime

    Let’s hope the Laker game isn’t as “exciting” haha

  14. I understand Stern’s motives, and they are justified. I understand that Arenas did something supremely stupid. But writers should try and recognize some of the levity to the situation.
    The guns were unloaded. Everyone in the room likely knew that the guns were unloaded (i.e. Crittendon would not reach for one of the guns if he thought he was going to get shot). I realize D.C. has strict gun laws, but there are times when the letter of the law can be oppressive in itself. Burress got several years for bringing a gun into a public place, concealed, and firing it. If Arenas received any significant jail or prison time, I think that this would be a failure of the law. But, man, what a dummy. I can’t imagine he ever thought it was a good idea. I can’t imagine.

  15. I have no sympathy for Arenas. Bad enough to pull something like this as a ‘joke’, but why continue to make light of it when both the law and the league office clearly see it as no laughing matter? This guy routinely leaves me perplexed but this just takes the cake.

  16. A random question out of curiosity… who do you think Kobe’s best friend on the team is? My first instinct would be Fish…but then I see the pre-game man-love between Kobe and Powell almost every game. Thoughts?

    • I don’t think Kobe is “best friends” in the BFF sense with anyone on the team. I would say Fisher, but Kobe is a private guy by nature.

  17. ESPN letting me down big time. Last time I saw a laker game on my t.v we got blown out on christmas. This time I’m missing it to some football game that absolutely means nothing to me. very upset.

    any links to a kcal broadcast?

  18. the game is airing on espn classic until the football game is over

  19. why do i cringe everytime fisher shoots?

  20. 20 try….or its airing on espn classic if you have that, which i don’t.

  21. Hate to reopen this can of worms, but for a ‘veteran’ PG, Fisher’s decision-making with the ball is mindboggling at times.

  22. any love i have for fisher is really running dry

  23. I’ll admit Fish isn’t really playing all that well as of late, however I’m no where near ready to say either Farmar or Brown should start ahead of him. I don’t think we’ve seen enough from either two players to say they should start ahead of Fish. Yeah Fisher sometimes makes those headscratching drives to the basket, the occassional PUJIT, but the man is a veteran, makes clutch shots and has great leadership skills.

    Farmar can drive to the rim, but we’ve seen more than one bad entry pass into the post, we’ve seen Brown take some contested jumpers with plenty of time on the shot clock. Still too early for me to declare Fisher to come off the bench.

  24. and Chewy wins with the first mention of Fisher’s inability to play bball!! =) Tell him what he’s won kurt!

  25. should run the offense through kobe..he’s creating shots for others.

  26. It was a joke between him and his teammates. The guns were unloaded, as the teammates likely knew, and they understood it to be a joke.

    If there weren’t so many dubious reports regarding some type of confrontation between Arenas and Crittenton, would Arenas be taking this much heat now? If the sole reason why the guns were in the Verizon Center was because he wanted the weapons away from his newborn, would he be suspended right now?

    Ask yourselves that, before you condemn Arenas for his immaturity and foolishness.

    This whole situation has been blown out of proportion due to the never ending stream of condemning information from “anonymous” and “unnamed” sources. Read the article on this whole crapstorm, and count how many times you see “According to a source…” Now, judgments are thrown out left and right, based on unproven speculations by all these “sources” of information.

    As far as Arenas’ lack of display of remorse, so the hell what? Arenas has expressed his regret, but it isn’t as if we don’t know his nature. Arenas is a goofball, and has always been. Have you never met someone that can only deal with grief and remorse through laughter, even when you know that person is not really smiling on the inside?

    Stern decides to hand down punishment now, as opposed to the protocol of waiting after a formal, federal investigation has been completed. While Arenas is without a doubt guilty of bringing the guns to the arena, we all know that isn’t what this is really about. Arenas is being punished as if he has already been found guilty of brandishing a weapon against his teammate, when he hasn’t. I know Stern wants to protect the precious public image of the NBA, but this is ridiculous.

    Also, I’m not even entirely sure that the Wizards’ motive for publicly castigating Arenas is strictly an issue of morality and right or wrong. Seems to me that their main priority is to get Arenas is as much heat as possible (not that it needs assisting), so they can invoke the morality clause and void Arenas’ contract.

    I don’t condone or condemn Arenas’ actions, but it pisses me off that so many people have already chosen to.

    On a lighter note, let’s hope the Lakers notch their 5th in a row.

    • BOOBOO, do not let your opinions on gun control get in the way of logic. Everyone pretty much agrees on how this started — disagreement over a gambling debt on a flight that left JCrit paying tens of thousands of debt that he thought belonged to Arenas. There was talk of shooting each other. This escalated to guns coming into the locker room/work place (and the latest reports have Crit loading a clip in one). Joke or not, that crosses the line, and Arenas does not get to skate. Simply put, you do not get to bring guns to the office unless your a cop. There is no “joke exception.” I don’t care if they are loaded or not. And Stern’s job — his top priority — is to protect the league (and the owners money). This hurts the image of the league. He had to do something.

  27. Kobe being BFF with anyone made me laugh. Can’t imagine him being all out brotherly with anyone; he seems to value privacy in a way only those truly dedicated to their craft can be.

    Still, he does seem to have accepted the role of the leader who needs to interact with his teammates, if only at a professional level, and I think we see that galore now.

    The vibe I get is that Fisher is somebody he respects, PJ is somebody he thinks of as a teacher who understands him, Pau is the barely-younger brother who has a chance of beating him, Odom is somebody he needs to encourage at all times, and Bynum is like a little child that reminds him of the bully that beat him but isn’t.

  28. Link, anyone? Please?

    I don’t have ESPN 360 or ESPN Classic here, and the second OT of The Bowl Game No One Cares About is really frustrating…

  29. Bynum back to being a blackhole. On one of his dunks, LO was absolutely open and yelling for a ball. Instead, Drew completely ignored him and went between Kaman and Camby for a dunk. The play was nice, but decision-making was not

  30. haha good analysis harold. anyway back to the game – baron has 7 assists already, some of them very pretty. Bynum is definitely motivated in this matchup against Kaman, but has been short on several hook shots (Kaman’s strength bothering him?). Poor Fish isn’t helping his cause.

  31. Is it me or did Shannon look kind of upset that PJ asked him to pass it to Odom to slow the last play down?

  32. #33, I also noticed that.

    I think Kobe has learned to share a brotherly bond with the rest of his teammates, if for no other reason than because he knows that it helps the team. Like harold, I think Kobe would rather be practicing his craft than hanging out with other people (aside from his family… maybe).

    I like watching FSN and KCAL, but their video quality just doesn’t match up to ESPN’s. Also, for whatever reason, the audio on KCAL was off by a fraction of a second, where I’d hear the *clank* of a miss before the ball reaches the rim.

  33. quick question for anyone/everyone. As of right now, which center would u rather have? Kaman or Bynum. I think I would personally pick Kaman. I love Bynum, but Kaman gives the effort that Bynum doesn’t seem to give every night. Or am I crazy?

    zephid, if you agree with me, I’ll start an early Start Sasha Chant.

  34. Every once in a while, I flip over to the Clipper broadcast with Ralph & Mike. I heard Ralph bagging on Mike for being a “Kobe lover” (& also having dinner with PJ). Mike defended himself RE: Kobe by saying he thinks he just admires greatness. Oh, Mike Smith. You speak for us all!

  35. I guess my question is why Arenas gets so heavily penalized when Capt Jack only got a ~7 game suspension for actually FIRING a gun in public. To me the only differences are a) guns in a strip club parking lot are more acceptable to the NBA front office than guns in a locker room, and / or b) twittering nonsense and acting a fool in a pregame huddle means the difference between an indefinite suspension and a 7 game suspension.

  36. throw some feather earingings on baron Davis right now and he looks just like Mr. T! Hilariious

  37. Kobe, putting two defenders into the popcorn machine with a very nifty move.

  38. im starting to get really riled up, fish should be on the coaching staff not the court

  39. bynum’s selfishness in the paint is aggravating sometimes

  40. #37, I actually have no opinion on gun control. I have just been wondering whether Arenas would be punished and criticized as he has if this whole thing with Crittenton never happened (since Stern’s only basis on suspending Arenas now, considering the incompletion of the formal investigation, is the indisputable fact that he had weapons in the arena). And, as I said, these new pieces of unproven allegations and reports are just that – unproven, but it bothers me that everyone seems to taken these information as facts and using them to condemn the involved parties.

    Regardless, I understand what you mean. This is a forum of Lakers basketball, not my personal soapbox, so I will leave it at that.


    The Lakers are struggling. Bynum has been sucking up the offense. Derek Fisher *shake my head*. We need guys to step up.

    #38, now? I’d take Kaman. In 3-5 years? Hopefully, Bynum would be the right choice.

    And did you guys know that Eric Gordon has almost 20 pounds on Kobe?? Yikes.

  41. if kobe can get it going we’ll be alright

  42. fisher can’t even bring the ball up anymore

  43. i don’t know why artest insists on posting up… he almost never scores when he goes to the rim in traffic. he has no lift and the refs certainly won’t bail him out.

  44. Wow what an ugly half by every player on the team. It’s safe to say the offense looks dreadful and this is a continuation from last night. Hopefully Kobe will start to hit some of the shots he is missing right now which he usually makes. We need Lamar to show up like he did last night.

  45. no one on the lakers seem to be making the right decisions, save kobe, tonight. and not down too much. I think the lakers have them right where they want them.

  46. Like i said, they were overdue to lose to a bad team.

    On the other hand they’re way overdue to beat blazers in portland, which they will.

  47. Kobe getting his own rebound after the FT. I think somebody once said that Kobe was one of the league’s best in getting his own rebound after the FT; think it was Gundy… just don’t know if there is a place that keeps those stats 😀

    Anyway, -9 going into the half is kinda nice, at least we won’t be napping and end up getting upset (since we’re down). Hopefully something or somebody can rile them up and have them outplay the Clips in the 2nd half.

  48. chownoir (was J) January 6, 2010 at 9:00 pm

    Anyone know what Clipper’s Staples capacity is? I thought I remember reading somewhere it’s different than Lakers. I’m at the game and there’s a guess attendance contest. I figure it has to be a sellout.

  49. Kobe played almost entire first half. Not good

  50. We haven’t lost yet, Mike. Have some faith. 😉

  51. The Lakers are amazingly disinterested in this game.

  52. This Laker offense is painful to watch.

  53. #54, “nearly 190,000” is what I found on Google. Good luck.

  54. if we want to stop davis were gonna have to take fish out

  55. #54, chownoir
    Wikipedia says “The arena seats up to 20,000 for concerts, 18,997 for basketball, and 18,118 for hockey and arena football.” Good luck!

  56. We are making Baron Davis look like Lebron James in this game

  57. Kobe took off his sleeve during halftime. Maybe that’s what was weighing him down. 😛

    #54, sorry, I meant “nearly 19,000,” but Mimsy’s is more accurate (by three).

    @Fisher and Bynum, way to help the team.

    Kobe is beasting it.

  58. WhiteLightnin’ January 6, 2010 at 9:13 pm

    Give me more of Mbenga! And I’d like to see Kobe on Baron.

  59. Without Kobe we are down 20+ but unfortunately we can’t get a damn stop on defense.

  60. Man, Kobe really put us on his back and is carrying the entire team both on D and O

  61. momma there goes that man!

  62. 61 – Lebron doesn’t have a midrange game like this. We’re making Baron Davis look like Steve Nash on crack.

  63. The Clippers high-low game is looking real strong.

  64. #67
    That’s why we need more Mbenga!



  65. well good thing kobe fumbled that pass – we got an extra point out of it!

  66. Finally some displays of defense

  67. in that last ugly fastbreak attempt,
    they should ve tried the double alleyopp for shannon.

  68. Kobe is on fire right now! Brown for three! Lets call it a come back!

  69. chownoir (was J) January 6, 2010 at 9:24 pm

    thanks everyone! 18997 submitted. I’m sitting next to two vocal Clips fans who are yelling for a foul call every trip down. I’ve managed to keep it civil so far.

  70. Lamar had the right idea on that charge, just poor execution by picking up his dribble he limited his options on where he could go

  71. 68. You are right. I did not mean it in terms of mid-range. I meant in terms of how dominant Baron has been in this game. It’s as if he does whatever he wants, just like Lebron

  72. LO probably needs to give the rock up on that break.

  73. its so obvious now but as soon as brown came in for fish…

  74. Nice to see some life out of the defense.

  75. any new links?

  76. #chownoir (72)
    Good luck! And remember that winners can always afford to be gracious… even in the face of very vocal oppsing fans. 😉

  77. Farmar so stupid

  78. Oh man I’ve been waiting so long to see a non-Kobe lineup make a run…

  79. #81, how about after he made the second one? lol 😛

  80. JVG was right – the running hook shot from your backup PG going 1 on 3 was dumb. Even if it went in.

  81. Everytime Farmar PUJITs, a kitten dies. Please, someone, think of the kittens.

  82. still a stupid play by Farmar. Just pulling up in transition with none of his teammates past half court (or in a position to rebound)

  83. shanwow doesn’t know how to run a break… even if he did score

  84. Okay, we tied the game. Now keep it close until Kobe comes back on the floor and I think we’re in good shape…

  85. I actually think that contested PUJIT from Brown was a higher-percentage play (for him) than him trying to find a teammate.

  86. Ron is like a deer caught in the headlights far too often.

  87. Lol we took out LO and then the clippers took back their lead… Kobe Time

  88. This Clipper team is pretty good when they decide to play (and when all Lakers take the entire first half off)

  89. Shannon has played well when we’ve needed him even though he’s taken some difficult shots he’s doing a great job off the bench. I think Phil should have brought Kobe back in with 7:30 to go we could have built a lead instead of being down by 4.

  90. Why the heck is Josh Powell still on the court???

    Kobe is forcing the issue too much in this game.

  91. Odoms back. Lets go

    • Craig Smith is a physically stronger four than anyone we have coming off the bench. We miss Pau for that.

      The Lakers expended energy to catch up, but just look a little tired now.

  92. if we can’t stop craig smith isolation plays we don’t deserve to win this game.

  93. What the hell is wrong with kobe’s shooting the past 2 games?! Seriously, if you’re finger is hurting that bad, then sit the f* down! Otherwise, you’re basically Allen Iverson jacking up 30 bricks a game!

  94. Craig Smith making the Lakers big men look like statues what a joke. Embarassing loss I dont care what anyone says it was another half a$$ performance by the whole team. Kobe may have been forcing alot on offense but hell if I was the best player on my team and the rest of my team was playing like scared school girls I’d jack up shots too. He brought us back into the game he just didn’t have enough in him to finish it. I’d still take a forced Kobe shot than a shot from any other player on the entire team. That’s how much confidence I have in the team right now.

  95. noles, can you say that after he swished that 3-ptr in the Sacramento game? STFU.

  96. Let’s hope we try to win this by playing defense and being smart on offense, instead of fouling on D and chucking 3s on O.

  97. Mark Jackson, captain obvious said it well… the Clippers just played harder than the Lakers.

  98. Clippers go on a 17-4 run after the game is tied at 81?! Cmon… This is depressing.

  99. Why is that every time the Lakers lose, it’s because of ‘lack of focus’? How bad can your focus be when you have the league’s best record? Sometimes it’s true, but sometimes you just get outplayed by the better team on the night.

  100. Overreaction how Kurt? they get beat by an average clippers team, look at Boston they’ve been playing without most of their best players the past few games yet they’ve been competing and winning.

    • Eric, the Clippers beat the Celtics just a couple weeks ago, they are capable of winning big games. If you think things are great in Celtics land, you have not watched them play lately. I’m saying simply that losses happen. But Lakers fans freak out because they think they should never happen.

  101. what was the lakers record this time last year?

  102. Don’t derpair. A 1st Laker win in Portland in 5 years awaits.

  103. I thought that this was the one game we actually lose after playing like we deserve to lose…

    But it’s the Clippers, and they may let us win it.

    I’m gonna cry if Kobe ends up making another game winner.

    Scratch that, it may have to be Sasha now.

  104. #109 (Joel)
    Whoa there. The Clippers are not and never will be a “better team” than the Lakers. I don’t care if they play better, they still are not better. However, they played a lot harder, executed with more discipline, and they fought for it in a way that we did not.

    Well played, Clippers. Now go away and let us prepare for the next game.

  105. lol, the referee just thought Shannon was trying to foul on purpose, and called it.

  106. I guess the most disappointing thing was that they were put on notice beforehand that the Clips were treating this game very seriously and failed to match that sense of urgency. I guess the question of why that happened is either mental or physical, with the latter being somewhat more palatable of an excuse.

  107. Tonite was bad Kobe night. In the 4th there was no attempt to run the triangle and Kobe went 1-on-5 – hence no defense either.

  108. 110

    The Celtics lost to the Clippers (and the Warriors, and the Suns) just last week.

  109. Kurt, I think the degree of the overreaction depends entirely on how a fan manages their anger after a disappointing game such as this one. In that regard, I prefer the sensible side with you.

  110. Must replace fisher with anyone else. He is terrible. He is the reason for this loss.

    Just thought i’d beat Aaron to the punch.

  111. 117, Boston played without Pierce, and KG and even Rondo in a few of those games. Yet they kept the Clippers and Warriors games close even though they lost, the Suns game was actually the exact same way the Lakers vs Suns game was. When I judge the Lakers I compare them to the one team I think can beat them in a 7 game series and that’s Boston. Most of the time when Boston loses it’s because they have injuries but you guarantee everytime their defense shows up and keeps them close in games. Just judging from what I’ve seen so far and I’ve seen Boston play every game this season and right now they are the better team, even though the Lakers have the better record. Boston has the best road record in the league and that’s why.

  112. 115

    Obviously they are not ‘better’ in a general sense, but they were the better team tonight. My point is, sometimes you just get outplayed and outworked on a particular night. It doesn’t necessarily mean there is some fatal flaw in your psyche.

  113. You know, when I saw this gamne on the schedule I thought automatic win, but then when I saw the Clippers record, I wasnt so confident…..well, good thing I wasnt lol.

  114. I’m confused. Why does it matter whether the Celtics win or lose to the Clippers?

    In college football it matters how well you play against all teams on your schedule, it influences your ranking at the end of the season and determines whether you get to play in a BCS bowl or other bowl game, and then a bunch of supposed experts vote for a national champion (stupid system, btw).

    However, in the vastly superior playoff system of the NBA, your record at the end of the season determines your playoff ranking, and your record against your playoff opponents determine who gets home-court advantage.

    The Celtics’ record against any other team than us does not affect us that much. It’s not important.

    Priorities, people. Priorities. 🙂

  115. For those who believe that this is the end of the world, start playing video games and you have a chance to go undefeated 🙂

  116. In the Lakers defense, no one can be expected to stop offensive studs like Craig Smith and Rasual Butler.

    • You’re right Eric, the Lakers don’t have any key injuries…..

      I don’t care how the Lakers stack up against the Celtics, or anyone else, in January. Doesn’t matter. Having a top seed and heading into the playoffs healthy matters (and not in that order).

  117. A little late to the party… Hmmm, well I was just to busy tonight to watch the game and forgot that it was a back-to-back to set the DVR. I read many comments though, FB&G is a good place to find out what happened to our beloved Lakers on game night, huh? I guess there is nothing else to say, except —

    Go Lakers… (we won’t lose to Portland in Portland again, would we)

  118. I had a bad feeling about his game when they interviewed LO after the Rocket’s game. They asked him about Staples center – and LO said something to the sort of “We own Staples – everyone will be wearing purple and gold – this is our court.” Too freaking cocky – you don’t think that fired up the Clippers?

  119. True story…one of my New Year’s resolutions was to not let myself get overly upset over a Laker loss and to try to look at it neutrally. I don’t know if saying it does it, but I’m feeling better tonight than I have before. Losing sucks, but its one, its January, we still have the best record, Pau was out, back-to-back. Whether it be excuses, rationalization or just moving on earlier than I usually would…1st step to a successful new year. ; )

    Life is still good…its better than being a Clipper fan all season long. Or any other team, enjoy the entire ride.

  120. 132. I know what you mean. My blood pressure can go up 30 points and heart rate double when l.a. Loses / plays bad/ goes down the wire! I’ve learn to control it a bit but I’m still trying to get the right mix of getting into the game but not letting it stress me out. It’s tough!

  121. Hi guys, not able to watch the game tonight (Europe thing), but Im qurious about Kobe´s night, why all the misses?

    Any trend in the misses, is he trying to difficult shots with his left hand, or shying away from contact? Same issues as against Rockets?

  122. #131, the guy asked LO that even though the Lakers will technically be playing on the “road,” if it felt different. LO just kinda said, “No. All the seats are purple and gold, and everything.”

    #134, Kobe was the only reason we caught up after down by 15. In the third quarter, he scored, I think, 9 points straight for the Lakers. In the fourth, the Lakers were tied, but the Clippers went on a run and took us out of the game. Kobe took his shots but they just weren’t falling. It didn’t help that the referees weren’t calling most of the fouls (in my eyes) on Kobe, so when he drove in and didn’t get a foul, the Clippers went on a fastbreak.

    Also, Dunleavy brought Baron Davis and Kaman back in, while Kobe continued to sit (I don’t know why).

  123. Only KB24 is trying.Props to Clippers though,they are on a roll.
    Refs?I don’t wanna talk about it.

  124. Its one loss people. The Lakers were on the 2nd night of a back to back playing without an all star PF, Artest hasn’t been himself yet since the concussion, and as always they start the worst PG in the NBA. These things will happen. Let’s relax. It is just one loss.

  125. I hoped Bynum would do well defending a bigger post player (Kaman) than what he has been accustomed to the past few games. Too bad Bynum and the team looked sluggish and played sloppy. I’m a bit disappointed in Bynum, but it’s just one game.

  126. Doubt we have anything to worry about right now. 3 of the lakers 7 losses were on the second night of back to backs.

  127. Curiously this loss doesn’t bug me too much. Lakers looked tired, disinterested, but at the same time, there was effort. The Clippers simply wanted it alot (and played like it). I’m surprised they aren’t better than their record indicates, as, they looked pretty good (though their bench is pretty bad).

    Look at it this way. Beating the Lakers is nearly the prize of the year for many teams.

  128. Kurt, I’m not trying to argue with you cuz we are rooting for the same team. Yes Gasol was injured but he was also injured the first time they played the Clippers, this is about as easy as it comes for a “road game” on a back to back. You may not care how they stack up with Boston right now but my whole main point and concern with this loss is for home court advantage, winning a 7 game series against the Celtics in the finals (if both the Lakers and Celtics are healthy) is the only concern I have from now until the end of the season. A game like this they should win, losing against a good team in a close game I can accept, it’s these losses where there is a lack of urgency and effort that concerns me. Just look at the remaining schedule for the rest of this month, this game was about as easy as it will come. Health is crucial, I’m not saying play Gasol or anyone to risk further injury I’m just saying win the games your supposed to win to give yourself a chance to have the best record in the league. And I doubt I’m the only one who is afraid of another 7 game series with Boston in the Finals with them having homecourt, I just might be the only one willing to admit it.

  129. Craig Smith always has good games against us. He’s just like Leon Powe, Luis Scola, those undersized four guys that just play really hard and physical. Odom’s just not that strong a low-post defender, and Smith took advantage. Odom’s a real asset on the perimeter against the PNR, but his post defense isn’t quite up to snuff.

    And I’m totally stealing Bill Bridges’ line.

    Flush it.

  130. 142. I agree with what your saying, this should have been a win. Truthfully, we will know how good of a team this Lakers unit is after they complete their 8 game road trip at the end of the month. If they beat Boston and Cleveland in their arenas I wont complain about a single loss until the end of the season.

  131. On a side note, does anyone know where the cheapest place to get good Lakers tickets at Staples is for someone out of state. I’ll be making the trip to LA in march and I want to catch a game at a reasonable price.

  132. Dang it!! I thought after the Houston game that Lamar would start playing like an All-Star every night!!

  133. it seems all our losses this year have been either blowouts or decisive. I guess you can look on the bright side and say we’re winning the close ones (thanks in no small part to Black Mamba), and blowouts happen to the best of teams. However, don’t good teams manage to keep the games close and not let them slip out of control in the 4th? I think in that respect, it’s correct to say the Celts have done better, with more significant injuries than we have (Pierce + Garnett vs Pau + Luke). It doesn’t say much about how the teams will do head to head, but until that happens, these proxy comparisons are all we have.