That’s how you don’t give up at home.
Dear Chris Paul,
That’s how you take over at the end of the game
HAHAHA! 44-20! HAHAHA!!!
Seriously though, did anyone else watch the game last night think “my god, Ginobili is really slow today?” I mean, he looked like Zydrunas Ilgauskas on some of his drives.
Alright, now that I’m done talking smack to people who will never read my stuff, let’s get straight to the Preview…
Marquee Matchups -
Shooting Guard – Kobe Bryant vs. Bruce Bowen: Did Bowen look old to you in Game 1? Not so much to me. Ukoda is their Matt Harpring (too slow) and Ginibili is their Ronnie Brewer (lacks upper body strength), and neither were much good at containing Kobe. Bowen, however, is still the closest thing this league has to a Kobe stopper, and I’d imagine Pop will make sure he’s on Kobe at all times. Defensively I was a little disappointed with Kobe, especially when he “dared” Bowen to shoot the 3 that put the Spurs back up by 6 in the 4th. -that could have shifted the momentum back towards the Spurs and was an overall boneheaded play.
Small Forward – Vladimir Radmanovic vs. Manu Ginobili: This is actually a cross-match, as I expect Vladdy will be guarding Bowen or Udoka for the duration of his time on the defensive end. On the offensive end, he didn’t quite pull a Peja, but 10 points in the 1st quarter while being guarded by Manu were a sight for sore eyes. The Lakers cannot ignore this match up offensively especially with Manu hampered with injuries.
Power Forward – Lamar Odom vs. Fabricio Oberto: All the Spurs fans point to Ginobili’s off-night and say, “if he had shown up, we’d have won.” Lamar Odom is the answer to that assertion, as he had an equally poor night. For all his ability to get to the rim, his touch was a little hard in Game 1 and a lot of layups were missed as a result. Part of this may have been Odom being prepared to absorb fouls never came and thus loosing concentration on the shot. Once he adjusts to the Spurs defense, he should return to post Gasol form.
Center – Pau Gasol vs. Tim Duncan: Yikes! That didn’t go to well did it? 30 and 18 were TD’s numbers, and he looked ever so nonchalant in reaching them. Poor Pau can only really hope to stay infront of him and make life difficult for Duncan. On the offensive end however, the Lakers really need to utilize him in the high post more, as his first step often enabled him to get past Duncan for a shot attempt. Beyond that, running a few more pick and rolls with Kobe might be a good idea.
Advantage: Spurs, slightly.
Good news? +10 in bench points, +8 in rebounds (+3 offensive). Sasha was +25 on the night, and Farmar was +11
Bad news? Ariza isn’t expected to suit up, and after this game we go on the road.
Statistical Predictions -
Alright, I’m going to keep track of statistical predictions for the Post-Season!
Here’s how it works, copy and paste the below and enter your picks instead, Closest prediction wins. Posts will only be accepted before the game starts, in this case 6:00 PM PST.
20+ Points: Kobe and Lamar
10+ Rebounds: Lamar.
2+ Blocks: Gasol and Turiaf.
3+ 3-Pointers: Fisher and Sasha.
Closest To A Triple-Double*: Kobe.
Point Margin: Lakers by 8.
Out On A Limb: Walton will play solid minutes in Game 2.
* a 20/10/6 will be considered closer than a 20/7/7 because player A is only short 4 assists while player B is short 3 rebounds and 3 assists, or 6 stat points in total, as opposed to 4 for plater A.
Game Information -
Radio: KLAC & KWKW
Burning Questions -
What’s the best way to stop/slow down Duncan?