TLN’s Playoff Preview: Lakers vs. Spurs [Game 4]

Watch this clip from Wet Hot American Summer.

It pretty much sums up what happened to the Lakers on Sunday evening. Cruising along these Western Conference Finals. Rumor had it that Jordan Farmar and Coby Karl were singing Kenny Loggins on the team charter. The Lakers were without a worry in the world.

Then they crashed into the defending champion Spurs who, somewhere between LAX and San Antonio, rediscovered the formula that has produced them four NBA titles in the last nine years.

It turns out that those visions of ascendancy were a tad bit premature.

As the Laker Nation wept for Pau’s seeming inability to finish around the basket, Lamar’s shoddy 2-11 performance and Kobe’s sabbatical from the free-throw line, what they forgot was the core tenant of professional sports: the other team has players and coaches too. And boy did their players show up for Game 3.

For how spectacular the Lakers performed in Games 1 and 2, behind familiar faces and a sea of silver and black, the Spurs found similar success. Despite Sasha Vujacic’s valiant and pesky defense, Manu Ginobili lost his acrylic fingernail and found his shot connecting on 5 of 7 three-pointers en route to a game high 30 points off the bench. Timmy Duncan found time between his daily regimen of Dungeons and Dragons to have a Druid-esque game, gobbling up 21 rebounds and casting a level-three charm spell over the basket for his 22 points.

In Game 3, the Lakers were not outclassed like Denver was. They were not overmatched like Utah was. They were not inept and they were not amateurish. They simply had a moment of playoff-neophyte weakness.

In Game 3, the angry, crusty, pissed-off, sneering, villainous, miscreant San Antonio Spurs simply stated that they would not go gently into their seemingly inevitable goodnight. This group of picaroons will go down kicking, screaming, wailing, moaning, thrashing, flailing, cavorting and will be generally unwilling to accept that a changing of the Western Conference guard is at hand.

19-point blowouts and fancy adjectives and verbs aside, the Lakers enter Game 4 with a very enticing predicament. Win and march back to Staples Center with a commanding 3-1 series lead; 48 minutes away from the NBA Finals. Lose, and they stumble back to Los Angeles tied at 2 games apiece. For the health and stress level of Vic the Brick and the general wellbeing of Laker fans everywhere, lets hope they choose the former.

Playoff Update! -

As the great Walter Sobchak once asked: “Has the whole world gone CRAZY!?” Over the weekend, the Celtics lost at home AND won on the road. In other bizzaro world news, I am the new small forward on the Seattle Supersonics and I’m also dating Darcy from Degrassi.

Television -

National: TNT (Marv Albert & Doug Collins)

Radio -

Los Angeles: AM570 KLAC (Spero Dedes & Mychal Thompson)

San Antonio: WOAI 1200 AM (Bill Schoening & Paul Castro)

Injuries -

Lakers:

  • Out: A. Bynum (Knee)
  • Will Play: K. Bryant (Pinkie), D. Fisher (Foot)

Storylines -

Resiliency! Resiliency!: What happened on Sunday happened. The Lakers must capitalize on the golden opportunity they have before them. A potential 3-1 series lead going home for Game 5. That is HUGE! GIANT! Don’t blow it! Please?

Did I mention that the Spurs LOVE corner threes?: I wrote this in the last game preview. The Spurs LOVE corner threes. Maybe corner threes are like Pinkberry in San Antonio. Bowen loves them. Udoka loves them. Hell, I bet you Matt Bonner loves them. I would be content if the Lakers deny the corner three ONCE in Game 4.

Varsity Challenge -

(Prize – A tour of the basement of the Alamo.)

What have the Spurs accomplished that none of the other ABA crossovers have?

  • lakerschamps08

    yea um we chance to kinda end this series but lets see wat happens.. odom and gasol gotta show up and it would not hurt if fisher showd up either. kobe needs bout 5-8 assists.. but i dont care how many points or assists and all the stats i just want a laker win.. go lakers

  • lakerschamps08

    ohhhh yea dont wanna get ahead of myself but i cant wait for marv albert to say “its over and the LA lakers are going to the nba finals” cant wait

  • Sako

    “What have the Spurs accomplished that none of the other ABA crossovers have?”

    Win a championship

  • http://thelakersnation.com kb24 4life

    win tomorrow, see you in the nba finals, cause we aint losing at home…

  • Lakers 24 7

    If Odom, Fisher, and Gasol show up, then Kobe will handle the finish, we can defend the Spurs, we have done it before. Run Bowen off the corner 3 cuz he pretty much cant score from anywhere else, and will Ariza finally get some decent playing time to defend Parker? Ginobili? We don’t need him to score.

  • vida8

    damn right about the corner threes…
    lakers have to play better defense if they have any chance of winning this series ….not only on manu but all five spurs guys ..dont give them easy basket….plz lakers……and excute ….ya i am still wonderin how kobe only got in to the FT lines 6 times in 3 games its 3 game ……thats unheard of….he either have to stop shottin or i will have to knock those Refs down !
    Lets go lakers…!

  • e

    they need to tighten up on defense..and the bigs need to stop missing layups..if u can check those two things, we can take this game

  • lalakerfan1980

    i feel kinda sad for the spurs, they are about to get their a.s.s
    handed to them tomorrow, the player the lakers have to stop is manu
    if he is not playing well they loose. Thats what is going to happen.

  • http://andrewbynum.com Andrew Bynum sucks

    are you excited for andrew’s return next eason, if yes thats great!? not really

    WARNING:if you are under 10 years old, don’t look at this picture

    http://www.talk-sports.net/nba/girlfriend.aspx/Andrew_Bynum

    i think the only chance of bynum coming back grat is if he did not kiss or sleep with this girl

  • http://andrewbynum.com ko-be

    [Comment ID #37084 Will Be Quoted Here]

  • http://myspace.com/plummerrocks Machinehead18

    20+ Points: Kobe and Gasol.

    10+ Rebounds: Lamar.

    2+ Blocks: Lamar and Turiaf.

    3+ 3-Pointers: Sasha and Kobe.

    Closest To A Triple-Double*: Kobe.

    Point Margin: Lakers by 4.

    Out On A Limb: Kobe takes over the 4th quarter in a much closer game than the last one.

  • http://89.com MambaKB24

    quick question: waht was the point of Ariza rehabbing for 4 months if hes only gonna play in garbage’ time???
    someone needs to stop ginoblli, right?

  • http://thelakersnation.com kb24 4life

    i think that we should start with the same 5, but when manu comes into the game like in the 6 minute mark, i say insert ariza to the lineup coming in for vlade to defend manu, that way we would have fish on parker, kobe on bowen, ariza on manu, lamar on duncan and pau on oberto…

  • http://89.com MambaKB24

    you know,i actually think we shuld start ronny

    seriously

    put ronnys big body on duncan

    pau on oberto

    fish on parker

    kobe on manu (he is defensive all first team you know, why waste him on bowen)

    and have lamar roam, and just keep a leash on bowen when it comes to those corner threes

    besides, pau is not working on tim, and tim is just KILLING us with second chance opportunities

    i know its a really “greg popavich” move, but ronny will contest every shot, add new energy, and put his body on him

    what do yall think?

  • GotAce

    HUGE GAME.
    Lakers Play D, LO/PAU/Fish play efficient

    Then This Game is OURS
    Heres to

    3-1!

    GO L.A.

  • LakersAllDay

    20+ Points: Kobe, Gasol

    10+ Rebounds: Lamar

    2+ Blocks: Gasol

    3+ 3-Pointers: No One

    Closest To A Triple-Double*: Kobe

    Point Margin: Lakers by 2

    Out On A Limb: It’ll be close..feeling a game winner

  • http://losangelessource.com/ Lane

    So who do you think wins game 4?

    Lane
    http://LosAngelesSource.com/

  • David

    Well here’s some insider information. My buddy is partying with sasha, vlad, and Pau in L.A (monday night). If they play like sh*t tomorrow, we’ll know why.

  • varsityoptimism

    [Comment ID #37097 Will Be Quoted Here]

    lie.

  • berks24

    to pj pls.no bench to start the 4Q…and kobe take it to the line !!!!!!!!!!!

  • domz

    we have to play great D in game 4. i am also pissed when i see the spurs shoot those corner 3′s freely. we can do this guys. we are going to beat them tomorrow and in game 5. belive!!!

    GOODLUCK LAKERS!!!
    BEAT SAN ANTONIO!!!

  • Richard

    The Lakers are still in control of this series, their Game 3 performance nonwithstanding. Robert Horry, he of the 7 NBA titles should know, said that it wasn’t anything that the Spurs were doing but what the Lakers weren’t doing. Everyone talks about Kobe trusting his teammates, but they need to trust him and take his lead.

    Spurs got theirs, now they will see what MVP is all about.

  • T-Dub

    If LO starts this disappearing act again, Artest will definitly be in play this summer! Now is the time to man up for Pau and LO. We need this game tonight!

  • Ari

    “Maybe corner threes are like Pinkberry in San Antonio.”
    So funny. So true.

  • Short Diezel

    RADMANOVIC should NOT be in the starting line-up.. they should put in Ariza or Sasha.. why is Phil Jackson sticking with him? he can’t play defense and has been inconsistent on offense..

  • playdefense

    lakers cannot let san antonio shoot WIDE OPEN THREES. kobe needs to take more than 2 free throws a game. (ATTACK THE RIM KOBE) and pau and lamar need to make those 4 foot shots. my god.. if those things happen then lakers win..

  • http://lakers.com lakers_stagedy

    put ARIZA On PARKER

  • DCLAKER

    The Key to victory will be “The BenchMobb”(Farmar has to stop being scared of Parker and just take’em off the dribble or cross’em over).

    LO will have a HUGE game

  • lakerferlife7

    the lakers need this W, if they dnt get it the series could go 7 and the spurs have a more exspirienced team…if lamar doesnt show up for the rest of the playoffs trade him…for ARTEST!!!!!!!!

  • Ballin’08

    Awright,,, F@ck The Bullsh!t!! Put Ariza on Ginobli or Parker and let’s walk out of there with a win…Sorry Luke and Vlad…ur suckiness is detrimental to the team right now…

  • the antoine

    personally I wouldve gone for manny over darcy.. shes too emo for my taste haha

  • varsityoptimism

    [Comment ID #37120 Will Be Quoted Here]

    ewwww manny.

    it goes:
    darcy
    ellie
    anya

  • BringDFishBack

    20+ Points: Kobe, Lamar, Fish.

    10+ Rebounds: Lamar.

    2+ Blocks: Pau and Turiaf.

    3+ 3-Pointers: Farmar, Kobe, Fish, and Luke.

    Closest To A Triple-Double*: Lamar

    Point Margin: Lakers by 12.

    Out On A Limb: PJ actually uses Ariza and puts him on Ginobili early in the agme.

  • GotAce

    Manny in her prime>>>>

    haha
    darcys cute tho.

  • sammie

    let’s just freakin win this one, C’MON!!!!

  • the antoine

    i would go with manny, ellie, and mia .. im not down with darcy’s eye fat.. haha

  • Big Phil

    Please get the f*ckin a-hole Fluke out the game! He has one of the worst basketball IQs in the NBA…he has athleticism or talent…he’s just a walkin turnover.

  • Big Phil

    he has NO* athleticism or talent!

  • http://deleted Mr. Juan / Your Warlock

    Already Jackson making huge mistakes in his selection of players… Luke Walton over Ariza is a humongous error for one.

  • Big Phil

    These refs F*CKIN S*CK today!

  • http://www.superstarbasketball.org Superstar Basketball

    Looks like these refs are getting ready to gift wrap the game. I hate the fact these Spurs complain about every call, flop on every contact, and cry about every whistle.

  • http://deleted Mr. Juan / Your Warlock

    Lakers had a 14 point lead and dominating, until Walton stepped on the court. Is Jackson a mule or what? Heck, I’m 100% convinced that Ariza, even on one good foot and limping couldn’t do any worse.

  • http://deleted Mr. Juan / Your Warlock

    Jackson selection of players up to this point…..77-75 Lakers…. SUCKS!

  • sammie

    just as I thought we WON!!! HAHAHA!!!

  • Becky

    That talk-sport site is psycho!