The Lakers had a nice first quarter in Oklahoma City to kick of the second round. That the team faded badly coming off a grueling seven-game series should surprise nobody, and that’s taking nothing away from the Thunder. They were squarely on their game and Russell Westbrook would not be denied. The resulting chatter, much of it outside the Lakers’ cyber beltway, painted a more forgone conclusion. The reality however, is that we’re not quite there yet.
The Kamenetzky Brothers at ESPN’s Land O’Lakers have a confab with Royce Young from the True Hoop network’s Daily Thunder blog. That’s a whole lot of free advertising, right there, by the way.
This is a couple days old but still brilliant, Zach Harper at HoopSpeak on MWP’s mind games.
Kevin Ding at the OC Register asks if it’s time for another classic game from Kobe?
Actuarially Sound at Silver Screen and Roll, puts out the call for more effort.
Interesting story in Yahoo Sports courtesy of Jeff Latzke from the Associated Press, about Kobe’s philosophy on taking charges.
Mark Heisler at Sheridan Hoops takes a serpentine turn through L.A.’s two parts of the elite eight.
In other tangentially related news, Mark Medina from the L.A. Times reports that Devin Ebanks was fined $25,000 for taking his shirt off and Andrew Bynum was fined $15,000 for not talking to the media. Okay, you know what? The players shouldn’t have called off their lawsuit. They should have just cleaned out the league for every penny.
The Lakers are a team that much of the blogging intelligentsia loves to hate. There are facile reasons why, but I suspect the resentment and causal links run far deeper than my limited attention span allows. Still, I don’t mind taking pot shots. Let the best of six series begin.
– Dave Murphy
1st round pick = 10 pts 3 reb 4 ast 36/19/69
Last year PG = 8 pts 2 reb 3 ast 43/41/81
Needless to say, this will be one of the biggest games of the year (game 7 vs Denver had to be the biggest).
– I know Kobe will step up to the defensive challenge of keeping Westbrook in check…but will it be enough? And least we forget, we still need 20+ points from Kob.
-MWP also has to frustrate Durrant w/o getting in foul trouble… in OKC
-Are two great games in a row too much to ask for from Bynum? I think not. Expecting big things from A. B. on both sides of ball.
-A solid 15-10-5 bounce back game from Gasol
-Sessions break-out post season game.
-Hill’s posts another double-double
Lakers even series at one apiece.
Kobe 16/45 3pt 35% — Blake 14/31 3pt 45%
There been times this year Brown stuck Kobe on the weakside while Sessions ran PnR. He’s hitting his 3s wouldn’t be surprised to see him spread the floor tonight. Last time I remember in playoffs was vs Suns 2010 wcf he was effective in that role. Kobe shot 43% from 3 that series.
Ebanks fined for his behavior after being ejected, and Bynum fined for hiding from journalists after Tuesday practice.
Because this series really needs more off-court drama right now. *sarcasm*
Dave Murphy: “The Lakers are a team that much of the blogging intelligentsia loves to hate.”
We are the Evil Empire: Veto, Fines, Ejections, Suspensions, Reluctant Trading Partners, + of course Hating Media.
With regard to the removal of shirts: Hopefully this has not become an annual Laker tradition.
Darius Soriano says
The game preview is up.
It’s a thing of beauty watching the Celts PnR defense.