08
May
09

Lakers Answer with physicality

I still have nightmares of the NBA finals from last year.  The Celtics held serve at home.  The Lakers won game three, lost a million point lead in game four, and won game five.  Game six, well that’s when the nightmare started.  The Lakers were soft, under tested, and humiliated.

As I said in my previous Lakers Rockets article, I think that game one was a great thing for the Lakers.  They found out that they can not cruise through the playoffs the way they did through the season or the previous year.  They are finally being tested.  Last game the Lakers got up fifteen and the Rockets would not go away.  Luckily they went into half with a nine point lead and maintained it in the second half of play sealing the victory.

In that half, the Lakers looked like a team from the 70’s and 80’s.  They had a similar resembelance of the Celtics last year.  They got in the other teams face, played physical, and showed them that they were not going to be pushed around by the NBA bad boy Ron Artest and the Houston Rockets.

As we all know Derek Fisher will be gone for tonight’s game after De Cleating Louis Scola.

Fish has been kicking it with Rey Maualuga....Fight on

Fish has been kicking it with Rey Maualuga....Fight on

I feel that this will once again benefit the Lakers.  As much as I love Fish and his leadership on the court his shooting has not been there for the playoffs.  He has shot 26% from the three point line and 42% from the field.  His defense has been in question going against the speedy Aaron Brooks.  Shannon Brown will most likely get the start.  Shannon is faster and a better defender than Fish, he also has been shooting the ball relatively well and brings an energy to the court.  Did anyone see him hit is elbow on the rim going for that block against Scola in the first half last game?  Yeah the guy has hops.

With Fish out Farmar and Vuj will both get significant PT and hopefully will step up to the challenge.  They will not be playing in “dead time” and trying to prove themselves yet playing within the offense when it counts.  If either of their games are on it should be  a lot of fun for Lakers fans.

Last but not least, lets look at Kobe and Ron Ron.  Ron has a short fuse and Kobe knows how to get under his skin.  Artest has been killing it from the field as of late and the Lakeshow needs Ariza and Odom to step the D up on him.  When it comes to defending Kobe, Artest and Battier are the toughest it comes.  They will ware Kobe out and make him trust his teamates.  As long as the other Lakers are knocking down then they shall be fine.

The Lakers once again need to pound the ball inside and get Yao into foul trouble.  With Yao in foul trouble that keeps Bynum out of foul trouble and on the floor longer.  If we can do this then the Lakers will force the Rockets into a shooting team which makes the odds stack up even more against them.

Tonight is going to be a hostile environment to say the least.  The refs are going to call a tight game, making the chances of Yao and Bynum to pick up some cheap fouls.  If the Lakers execute and stay tough, then there should be no problems getting one if not two W’s in Houston.

Game time 7:30 pacific, lets go lakeshow-

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