Heir'z Corner: Lakers Survive Big D
Killed 2 fat chicks with one candy bar in the title. ;) Anywayz, this game was both a blessing and a curse for the team. While they displayed a hunger and will that never kept them out of a tough game on the toad no matter how ugly it looked during certain stretches, it also showed that having a perfect record doesn't necessarily make you a perfect team. We very easily could've lost tonight to a team without their second best player due to carelessness. The lone bright spot is that we're still early in the season.Vlad Rad
- Hopefully his only playing 16 minutes wakes him up A LOT. Not even a little bit, A LOT. As usual, things seemed to go from bad to worse when the other team made a run while he was on the floor. He looked to provide relief with outside shots when Dallas was in the middle of spurts, but instead his forced shots fueled more to Dallas' runs. His mind also seemed to drift a couple of times as he threw lazy passes and missed defensive assignments. The fact that he barely played in the second half and no minutes in the 4th quarter should help him realize that Phil didn't have faith in him to help get us back in the game. Final stat line: 4 points, 2-6 from the field, 0-3 from downtown.Bynum/Gasol
- They both played relatively well despite some bad fouls and badly missed shots by Bynum in the paint. Pau didn't hesitate to take those mid range shots to sort of stretch the floor and free things up in the paint. Bynum may not have been able take advantage since he was a little farther away from the basket than I would've liked to have seen, but nonetheless they both got it done. Pau especially. I was surprised at how well he defended Nowitzki, to be honest. In the 4th quarter he closed out on Dirk a couple of times and put him in a position of whether or not to shoot or pass and he just didn't know what to do. Final stat line: Bynum- 11 points, 10 rebounds, 5-12 from the field, 3 blocks. Gasol- 22 points, 11 rebounds, 8-15 from the field, 6-8 from the line.
- As always, KB24 did what KB24 does. He was a lot more aggressive tonight than he's been in any of our previous games and really looked a lot like the old Kobe, having to chase the ball down on almost every possession. He stopped the bleeding in the 4th when Dallas thought they had a chance and woke his teammates up. His drive and 3-point play changed the complexion of the game from there on out. Final stat line: 27 points, 4 rebounds, 10-20, 7-8 from the line.Fish
- He didn't really put up any significant points on the scoreboard, but if it wasn't for his hustle in the 4th quarter I don't think we would've pulled this one out. His strength and grittiness really came in handy when we needed it most. Final stat line: 6 points, 1-8 from the field, 4 rebounds, and 3 assists.
- In the first half after the starters lost control of the game, the bench really couldn't get everything under control like they normally do. They didn't really play together and analyze what we needed. Coming off the bench, you have an advantage of watching from the sidelines and being able to make something happen. Instead of realizing that we needed to slow the game down, they played at an even quicker tempo and as a result, we found ourselves in an even deeper hole. Ariza was the lone wolf off the bench who made things happens. Once again his activity anchored our defense and got us back in the game.Final Thought
- This was a fun game to watch. We actually got less rebounds than they did tonight, Dampier dominated Bynum. There were a couple of instances where we lacked aggression and allowed them to get multiple and sometimes triple opportunities. Regardless, I'm not concerned. When you have two 7-footers why would you be? As I said earlier, we're not a perfect team and won't look spectacular in every game. Tomorrow night, though, we'll face a team that won't take any of the weak ish we offered up tonight. Let's get another one before we head back home.