Game one is in the books, 1 down 15 to go. The Lakers started the playoffs and their quest to win a championship with a 13-point win over the Jazz. No pun intended but the game did provide a mixture of the good, the bad and the ugly that we’ve seen all season as Lakers fans.
The Lakers were efficient and played a great first half of basketball. The first half effort allowed the Lakers to take a lead.
The Lakers had contributions from several players and played well on both ends of the court, in the first half. Kobe Bryant had a great game, he also had an efficient game as evidenced by his first half stat line that read 12 points on 5-of-7 shooting and 5 assists. The Lakers are 39-3 when he shoots less than 21 shots.
Kobe draws so much attention from an opponent defensively that he put the Jazz in a familiar position of pick your poison him scoring a huge amount of points or him getting his team involved.
The Lakers communicated and played solid defensively holding the Jazz to 35% shooting in the first half and 39% for the game. The Lakers were dominant in the first half shot able to increase said lead, it grew to as much as 22 points by the end of the half (The Good).
Deron Williams played well leading Utah’s offense posting a double-double putting up 16 points and an amazing 17 assists. Carlos Boozer had a strong effort and put up 27 points (The Bad).
Utah was able to get the Lakers in foul trouble and continuously get to the free throw line. Pau fouled out of the game, Andrew had 5 fouls and Lamar had 4. The Lakers committed way too many fouls and will have to play defense without fouling.
Despite the fact that the Lakers have a long front line they were out-rebounded by the Jazz. Utah also got 42 points and 17 rebounds from the power forward position as Boozer and Paul Milsap were recipients’ of several of Deron Williams 17 assists (The Ugly).
One adjustment could see the Lakers take the ball out of D. Williams hands.
The Lakers know what they have to do but have to avoid easing their foot off of the accelerator. The Lakers will take the win but without the turnovers, fouls and being out-rebounded the margin of victory in game one could’ve reached 30.
This will be a physical series and several adjustments will be made. The Lakers need to continue to establish Pau in the post and allow him to go to work offensively or set the table for his teammates.
Tipoff: 7:30 PM PST
- Los Angeles: FS West 1 HD (Joel Myers & Stu Lantz) & TNT
- Utah: FSN Utah (Craig Bolerjack & Ron Boone)
- Los Angeles: AM570 KLAC (Spero Dedes & Mychal Thompson)
- Utah: KFAN 1320 (“Hot” Rod Hundley )
- None to report.
- Mehmet Okur (Hamstring)