Is anyone else witnessing the obvious mediocrity inscribed in the Lakers’ performance as of late? I hate to say it but, it’s almost as if we have no heart; no love and appreciation for the game.
Sure, the Lakers were plagued with an unpleasant altitude, an inordinate amount of poor officiating (regardless of the remark that “poor officiating is a loser’s lament” as proclaimed by Coach Van Gundy after Game 4), and a bloodthirsty Denver team still bemoaning their loss in Game 3, but it isn’t as if we met the challenge.
Our aggression and intensity has been consistently undermined in this series by the Nuggets’ presence in those areas.
Where are we?
We can hardly keep a significant lead, much less come back easily from a deficit, and our intensity turns up a notch as the minutes remaining in the game begin to dwindle into scarcity (not as soon as necessary to say the least).
It’s bad enough that we’re sluggish and more predictable than we have ever been, but then, we fans get the common courtesy of seeing our exhausted MVP admit that, “We got whooped” in a press conference during a post-game interview (after he contributed 34 points to our overall score for the night no less, at least someone attempted to do their job).
It tugs at your heartstrings to see our Purple and Gold clad warriors so down, but it really isn’t hard for them to beat the Nuggets, and it’s actually quite frustrating that the Lakers’ won’t just make the necessary adjustments and play to their full potential.
I’ve heard many gripes about how the Lakers are exhausted because they’ve played eleven Playoff games in 22 days, but that really is no excuse. If we wanted it, it was right there for the taking. But it isn’t achievable if defense continues to decline.
The Nuggets are killing us in rotation; their quick ball movement catches us not rotating fast enough with the ball, so they can roll off the high pick with our backs turned and dunk it on us. They’ve been doing it all series, and I promise you they will continue to hail some pretty embarrassing plays on us if we don’t step it up a tad.
Also, Chris Andersen is not that much of a threat. He gets off on leaping around like a demented eagle, if we put a body on him, there’s no room for a ridiculous amount of activity from him. While we’re at it, we should probably review boxing out in general because our rebounding is pitiful on both ends of the floor.
But I’m not here to rag on my boys about the little things, I would just like to make it known that it is indeed, little things.
Little things are quite easy to change with the right amount of effort and conformity, let’s hope that we’ll be the bloodthirsty ones come Game 5.