Category Archives: Los Angeles Lakers

Kobe, Pau Gasol postgame Game 1 NBA Finals

A strange press conference featured Pau Gasol being asked about his relationship with Rafael Nadal and Kobe Bryant learning new words.

Highlights of Lakers’ Game 1 win over Celtics

In case you missed it, here are the highlights of one of the longest NBA games I can remember.

The game started shortly after 6 PM Pacific and didn’t end until nearly 9 PM.  That’s just too long.

Lakers’ physicality the key in Game 1 win over Celtics

Kobe and his teammates attacked the paint and pounded the Celtics on the boards in Game 1. (Pic via Getty Images/Christian Petersen)

There was a time when Pau Gasol wanted nothing better than to let his teammates do the dirty work. There was a time when he appeared to be genuinely afraid of Kevin Garnett.

Those times are only a distant memory now.

Gasol scored 23 points, grabbed 14 rebounds, and even blocked three shots as the Lakers cruised to a 102-89 win over the Celtics in Game 1.

The game was won in the second and third quarters, when the Lakers turned up the intensity and began looking to run against the aging Celtics.

L.A. held a 42-31 edge on the boards and was able to get to the basket at will. The Lakers are the bigger team in the series, and also the more athletic team.

Boston needs to play harder and smarter to have a chance.

Rajon Rondo finished with 13 points and eight assists, and had a +/- of -17. Meanwhile, Nate Robinson was scoreless in 13 minutes but had a +/- of +10. Amazingly, the Celtics offense looked better when Rondo was on the bench.

Rondo was content to settle for jump shots against Kobe Byrant’s sagging defense.

Kobe finished with 30 points, seven rebounds, and six assists. He looked extremely fresh and active after another extended layoff.

Doc Rivers has some adjustments to make heading into Game 2. Kevin Garnett scored 16 points in 34 minutes but wasn’t very effective. He looked exhausted by the third quarter and struggled on both ends. Rivers needs to reduce his minutes a bit.

The same can be said for the wounded Kendrick Perkins, who was outplayed by the wounded Andrew Bynum. Perkins can barely get off the ground thanks to a balky knee.

Rasheed Wallace has played well when given a chance in the playoffs and should get starters minutes in the remainder of the NBA Finals. His shooting ability helps the Celtics space the floor for Rondo and Pierce to get to the basket.

The Celtics will look to bounce back Sunday in Game 2.

Rondo the key as the NBA Finals finally get underway Thursday

Rondo presents a host of matchup problems for the favored Lakers. (Pic via Zimbio.com)

The 2010 NBA Finals are finally here.  Let’s hope the Celtics and Lakers engage in a hard-fought, well-played series that produces compelling subplots.  Anything to overshadow the increasingly annoying NBA free agent speculation.

The Lakers are the prohibitive favorites thanks to a spry Kobe Bryant, an assertive Pau Gasol, and a cast of capable role players.  But the Celtics are peaking at the right time, thanks to a surprising bench and balanced scoring.

Make no mistake, the Celtics have a chance to win the NBA championship if Rajon Rondo is able to his thing.

Rondo’s unique game presents a host of problems for the Lakers.  Unlike Steve Nash, who is much more comfortable shooting jumpers off the pick and roll, Rondo seeks the paint and doesn’t stop until he gets near the basket.

Rondo struggles against bigger guards, but has his way against players his size.  Derek Fisher has physicality, but lacks the quickness to stay with Rondo.  Fisher’s efforts on the defensive end are admirable, but not overly effective, regardless of what the analysts say.

Ron Artest matches up perfectly with Paul Pierce, who isn’t quick enough or big enough to be able to work comfortably against the Lakers.  Ray Allen will most likely be shadowed by Kobe Bryant.  Kevin Garnett looked done by the end of the Orlando series and will face a huge challenge against Pau Gasol.

The pressure is on Rondo to control the game from start to finish.

Rondo tends to play at his best when the stakes are high.  He is capable of baffling opponents and quietly producing triple-double.  His big fingerprints needs to be all over the game for the Celtics to have a chance.

Much more NBA finals coverage coming throughout the night here on ToTheTin.

Craig Sager postgame interview with Ron Artest

Nobody does better postgame interviews than TNT’s Craig Sager.  After interviewing Kobe Bryant following the Lakers’ Game 5 win Thursday, Sager caught up with the clinically insane Artest.  The goal: Get some sort of an explanation from Artest on why he took a 3-pointer with 22 seconds on the shot clock and the Lakers up with a minute remaining and the Lakers up by three.

The end of the interview was absolutely priceless. Artest:  “Say Queensbridge!” Sager: “Queensbridge, where they don’t play with a 24-second clock.”

Game 6 should be a blast.

This is Ron Artest’s game-winning layup

Ahh, the joys of Ron Ron.  Artest had an awful game, took a bad 3-pointer late in the game to help leave the door open for the Suns, but his second basket of the night lifted the Lakers to within one win of the NBA Finals.

Jason Richardson got caught watching the ball in the air and stopped playing.  He said after the game that he thought the ball would hit the rim, but that’s no excuse for not putting a body on somebody.

Thriller: Highlights of Lakers Suns Game 5

I was flying last night during  most of Game 5, although I did see the the highlights.

More on this game in a bit–after I watch the replay so I actually know what I am talking about.