After about the first quarter I knew this game was over. We were up by thirteen and it was a dominant +13. We shut them down on defense and on offense we got basically whatever we wanted. The craziest thing was that it didn’t even look like we were really going all out. It was like all we were doing was executing and playing how we should and that was enough to pick apart this Utah Jazz team.
By the end of the third quarter, I was thinking about getting a head start on this post-game and wax poetic about how this is a new Lakers team. This is the team of the future. Hornets? Spurs? Who cares! Lakers, baby!
Then the fourth quarter came and snapped me back to reality. This is not a new Lakers team. This is the same ass Lakers team that we’ve been following all season. The Laker team that can blow out the best teams the NBA has to offer and then lose the Grizzlies and Bobcats. This is still our Lakers…
And you know what? I wouldn’t have it any other way. They may be flawed, but it’s never a dull moment with our Lakers. 12 minutes left and up by 16? Mmmmm, that’s pretty good, but how about up by 3 with 19 seconds. Yeah that sounds better. That sounds like compelling drama.
Kobe said this is a Hollywood script. It seems to be a very fitting description.
Team Assessments –
Utah Jazz: They came out the gate looking very demoralized or something. I don’t know what it was, but they just didn’t seem like they had much energy and I didn’t get a feeling from them like they really believed they could win. Everyone looked really flat.
Everyone except Deron Williams and Paul Milsap. Not surprisingly that big run in the fourth was sparked by those guys. Deron Williams really impressed me in last years playoffs and after watching him closely throughout this series, I’m even more impressed. He’s a very special player and he’s going to be a real threat for years to come.
The Los Angeles Lakers: Remember earlier in the season when we were the best rebounding team in the league? Yeah, neither do I. Go Mamba!
The Michael Jordan Award for MVP of the Game: Kobe Bryant. The team for the most part played well, but when the Jazz put us on the ropes it was the Mamba who took it home for us. MVP indeed (interesting observation: Kobe and AK47 have been shooting the 3 ball like garbage the entire series, yet they come up with the biggest 3’s of the game).
The Dominique Wilkins Award For Highlight of the Game: Kobe’s long range and 1 bank shot in the Fourth Quarter.
The NBA – Where Lamar Odom Makes Clutch Free Throws with the Game on the Line Happens Award: I honestly never thought I’d write that sentence. Where Amazing Happens, indeed.
The Lamar Odom Award for Getting the Same Amount of Points as Rebounds: Lamar Odom put up 13 points and 9 rebounds. That’s pretty Lamar Odom of you Lamar Odom, but check these numbers out courtesy of Carlos Boozer: 14 rebounds and 12 points. Okur was like a throwback Lamar with 16 points and 10 rebounds, and lets not forgot Lamar’s big buddy Pau Gasol chipping in 17 points and 13 rebounds.
Just look at that box score. It’s Lamar Odom fever, baby! And the only cure is to try and get the same amount of points as rebounds.