From Mark Heisler, Lakers Nation: REALITY CHECK, Tex.–Well, it was fun while it lasted. This season was such a bummer for Laker fans, it’s not surprising that they seized upon, or imagined, a ray of hope when the team finished 28-12 and, Kobe or no Kobe, made the playoffs as a No. 7 seed. Unfortunately for the Lakes, there were two (2) great teams in the West so they’d have had to get up to No. 6 to gain a meaningful advantage. The Lakers would have been underdogs with Kobe Bryant. Without him, the Spurs were 8 1/2 point favorites Sunday and won by 12. If it’s any consolation for the Lakers, the game was hardly one-sided.
From Mike Bresnahan, LA Times: The Lakers left the site of Monday’s practice, a local high school, muttering that the court was a little too hard, forcing some unexpected bounces. In other words, it looked just like Sunday’s game against San Antonio. The Lakers committed 18 turnovers in their 91-79 loss, nothing out of the ordinary for them during a season in which they almost always had more miscues than their opponents. The problem now is that their scoring is so low without Kobe Bryant, they can’t afford to give the ball away when they have it. They’re pledging to be more careful in Game 2 of their first-round series Wednesday.
From C.A. Clark, Silver Screen & Roll: “He’s a fan right now.””A fan??? lol #microphonetalk” Two sentences. 10 words. 48 characters and one hashtag. That’s all it took to create another stupid, pointless situation that puts the entire Lakers franchise back in the throes of the dumbest soap opera in sports. It’s been running in Los Angeles since at least the late 90s and the latest cast of characters sure looks poised to continue the string for far longer.The top quote of course, is Mike D’Antoni’s. Complete with an eye roll, Coach Mike was venting a little frustration at being asked about the tweets of one Kobe Bryant. It was a stupid thing to do, because it exacerbated an awkward situation and turned it into a full on event. It was a pot shot at his best player, the guy he rode to death just to make the playoffs, at a guy who has far more credibility and sway and love in the city of Los Angeles, at the guy who can make his life a living hell if he wants to. Of course, he was frustrated because Kobe was already doing that last part.
From Dave McMenamin, ESPN LA: Long before Kobe Bryant got into a bizarre postgame tête-à-tête from 1,350 miles away with Los Angeles Lakers head coach Mike D’Antoni on Sunday, Bryant glowed about the man, calling him an “offensive genius” back in November. D’Antoni called Bryant, who was live-tweeting the Lakers’ Game 1 against the San Antonio Spurs from his home in California as he rehabs after Achilles surgery, a “fan” for his 140-character contributions from afar. Probably a poor word choice from D’Antoni, one that Bryant chalked up to a “#nervousresponse” in one tweet, but one that stuck in his craw nonetheless when he later tweeted sarcastically that he would be watching Game 2 “from the crib again in a pau jersey and laker face paint.” Whatever adjustments D’Antoni makes for his team on the offensive end, after the Lakers lost to the Spurs 91-79 in Game 1, will determine if “genius” was as poor a word choice by Bryant.
From Kurt Helin, Pro Basketball Talk: And it was — they were putting his tweets up on the broadcast during the game. Players and Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni were asked about Kobe’s comments after the game. (And before you tell me this was a “media driven” story, we have done just one post on it before now and looking at the numbers you REALLY care about this.) So Kobe is done tweeting during games.