LOS ANGELES — Phil Jackson offered to take the blame for the Lakers not continuing their great first-quarter roll, suggesting he didn’t do that well with his substitutions. One complication was Kobe Bryant wanting to stay in the game for the start of the fourth quarter, when he usually rests … but Jackson had good reason to heed Bryant’s request: Bryant is increasingly masterful at seizing moments in games to step forward and go for the jugular (instead of always at the end of games).
Jackson didn’t name other names, but he mentioned trying to play too many people. Bad news, Jordan Farmar.
Farmar had several bad plays to start the second quarter when he got his minutes in his usual matchup with Utah’s small backup point guard (Brevin Knight). And even though he later did get one left-handed fast-break layup, Farmar did not look sharp — and Shannon Brown played instead of Farmar in the second half when Utah used small backup point guard Ronnie Price.