Read about the Lakers vs. Sixers games as it unfolds. As always, feel free to refresh your browser for live updates throughout the game … On second thought, they wouldn’t technically be “live” updates since you have to press refresh. But whatever.
Lakers: Andrew Bynum, Sun Yue
Sixers: Elton Brand, Jason Smith
Lakers Fisher, Bryant, Ariza, Odom, Gasol
Sixers Andre Miller, Willie Green, Andre Iguodala, Thaddeus Young, Samuel Dalembert
Happy St. Patrick’s Day everyone – My mom’s mom was named “Fitzpatrick” (um, last name).
Phil Jackson Pregame
What does it say about an opponent when the head coach isn’t asked one question about them? Instead of talking about Philly, Jackson was peppered with MVP questions, though he revealed little. Essentially, he tries to stay out of it and thinks there are several qualified candidates, including Kobe, LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Dwight Howard. The other thing Jackson mentioned was that he may start to play his veterans fewer minutes.
11:54 L.A. got right to work on an alley-oop from Kobe to Lamar, then forced Dalembert into an unwanted perimeter J. On the next possession, Gasol scored easily inside to make it 4-0. In related news, Pau’s kind of efficient offensively.
10:07 Smack – Odom’s been really solid on defense lately, as witnessed by his swat of Iguodala, resulting in a Fisher layup.
7:38 Following assistant coach Brian Shaw’s game plan to the letter, L.A. went inside early and often to create good looks, and got back in transition the few times they missed, forcing Philly into their (putrid) half court offense. The result? An 11-2 start, capped by an Ariza triple as the Sixers missed 9-of-10 shots. Were this pace to continue, the score would be 132-24.
7:02 Green hit a jumper, which is news because Philly, the league’s worst three-point shooting (and shooting in general) team, had yet to can a J. Their strength, rather, is the athleticism on the wings with Young and Iggy, made better by Miller’s court vision … But if you keep ‘em from running, the Sixers aren’t so dangerous.
4:30 A good time to link to Kobe’s St. Patrick’s Day green-laced shoes comes after he nails a triple, his second-straight jumper, to put L.A. up 19-8.
1:46 Ariza hit from three for the second time moments earlier, prompting this comment from Lakers TV analyst Stu Lantz: “If Trevor’s hitting his outside shot, you have some issues defensively.” Meanwhile, here was the solid Lamar line as L.A. went up 24-14 on 63 percent shooting: four points, five boards, three dimes and a block.
1:46 Worthy of its own line: Gasol sat down in favor of Mbenga. Usually Pau plays the whole first quarter and starts the second, but we’re obviously seeing what Jackson talked about pregame. Joining Mbenga off the bench were Luke Walton and Jordan Farmar.
0:00 It wasn’t necessarily the bench’s fault, especially with Bryant and Odom still on the floor, but nonetheless the Sixers scored the quarter’s last six points to pull within four at the break, practically negating a terrific start heading into the second quarter. The slight let down – as you might have expected – came due to a lack of defensive ball pressure that we probably won’t see in the playoffs.
Here’s the other problem: six turnovers.
Continue reading ‘Lakers – Sixers Running Diary’