The Los Angeles Lakers are in Milwaukee to face the Bucks in the first game of a three-game Midwestern road trip.
Despite a record-shooting night by the Suns, the Purple and Gold were somehow in position to win the game until the most ridiculously timed technical foul was called on Lamar Odom. I realize that the league has told the officials to call technical fouls for excessive reaction, but three things come to mind; 1) basketball is an emotional sport, its impossible to remove emotion from the game. 2) The outcome of the game should be decided by the players on the court and not the officials. 3) That call should not have been made with under a minute to play.
The new policy on technical fouls is a horrible rule that needs to be abandoned. No?
In order to snap a two-game losing streak, the Lakers will have to do something that they haven’t done in a while play defense. To say that a team has won eight of their last 10 games is good, but allowing 239 points in the two losses is un-acceptable.
The Lakers have played a lot of offensive oriented teams that like to play at a faster pace. That won’t be the case tonight; the Bucks are a top five defensive team, ranking 1st in the league in points allowed, defensive efficiency and opponents shooting percentage.
Their also a top ten rebounding team. Andrew Bogut provides an inside presence and length to match up with the defending champions.
Brandon Jennings is one of the best young point guards in the league and will have to be contained. The Lakers have difficulty with quick point guards and after witnessing Jenning’s all out assault on the ankles of Stephen Curry, L.A. has to get the ball out of his hands as much as possible in order to limit his impact on the game.
Corey Maggette has specialized in drawing contact and getting to the free throw line his entire career.
Luc Richard Mbah a Moute and John Salmons will draw the mission impossible assignment of trying to defend Kobe Bryant. The Lakers need to continue to improve defensively. They need to do a better job of boxing out and rebounding.
The Lakers have to control the tempo of the game, take the crowd out of the game, do a solid job defending the pick and roll play, stop the dribble penetration of Brandon Jennings, get back in transition, and rotate out to three point shooters.
The Lakers swept last season’s series with the Bucks for the second consecutive season. In their last meeting, the Lakers held the Bucks to a series-low 77 points.
Tip-off: 5:00 PM PST
- Los Angeles: KCAL-TV9 (Joel Myers & Stu Lantz)
- Milwaukee: FS Wisconsin (Jim Paschke & John McGlocklin)
- Los Angeles: ESPN 710 AM (Spero Dedes & Mychal Thompson)
- Milwaukee: WTMJ AM 620 (Ted Davis & Dennis Krause)
- Andrew Bynum (Knee) Out
- Theo Ratliff (Sore Left Knee) Out
- Luke Walton (Strained Right Hamstring) Probable
- Lamar Odom (Sore Right Foot, Bone Bruise) Probable
- Michael Redd (Knee)
- Carlos Delfino (Neck) Day-to-Day