Hey folks, welcome back to the Honda Center in Anaheim. If you’re watching on TV, it must be on TNT, who has exclusive rights to the broadcast for the first of 11 times this season.
As such, the best team in the business – Kevin Harlan, Doug Collins and Cheryl Miller – is here to call the action, while our radio booth of Spero Dedes and Mychael Thompson can still be heard on your radio dial or via NBA.com.
As we reported a bit earlier, Kobe Bryant, Sasha Vujacic and Josh Powell won’t be playing tonight; it’ll be interesting to see who Phil Jackson starts in the place of No. 24. As the media salivates as if a Jackson’s lineup card were a Carl’s Jr. burger (at midnight), here are a few options:
A) Fisher, Odom, Ariza, Gasol and Bynum
B) Fisher, Ariza, Radmanovic, Gasol and Bynum
C) Farmar, Fisher, Radmonovic, Gasol and Bynum
D) Farmar, Fisher, Odom, Gasol and Bynum
E) Fisher, Odom, Radmanovic, Gasol and Bynum
F) Fisher, Walton, Odom, Gasol and Bynum
G) None of the above
If it were only Kobe missing the game, perhaps Jackson would go with Vujacic, but the third shooting guard on the depth chart is Coby Karl, and it’s fair to speculate he won’t be starting. Ty and I have been discussing how Jackson might not want to mess with his Odom-Farmar-Ariza combo off the bench since Kobe’s going to be back almost immediately, but we’re not sure about the best alternative.
Jackson went with option B. Fair enough.
At about 5 p.m., it looked to me as if one of the rims were off a little bit. Just slightly slanted. But apparently that wasn’t the problem in a five-minute delay before tipoff at 7 p.m. Instead, as reported by the seated-next-to-me Cheryl Miller, the wire inside of the rim broke, and lead official Bob Delaney was concerned that it might cut one of the players. Make it a 13-minute and counting delay.
No worries though, I’ll now look for a “Bayside Tigers” t-shirt online so I can be Zach Morris for Halloween. Don’t copy me – I already have unlaced high tops, stone-washed jeans and spiky blond hair with a Manhattan Beach wave.
Actual First Quarter Tip
OK. Only 14 minutes there for the two Honda Center guys that must have been sweating huge bullets trying to rush the rim-fixing job, which now features about 10 strips of very visible white tape keeping the net up. Gotta wonder if that distracts the shooter? Not Pau Gasol, who cleaned up an Ariza miss for the game’s first points. Remember, Gasol’s shooting 63.2 percent this preseason. He’s no Andris Biedrins, but that ain’t bad…
Joining Gasol in the lane defensively was of course Bynum, who combined with the Spaniard to contest three early Bobcat misses near the rim before a Vladimir Radmanovic three made it 5-0. If Vlad had stepped on the line, he would have equaled Tampa’s 4-0 World Series game two lead over Philly.
Continue reading ‘Lakers – Bobcats in Anaheim: Running Diary’