FabFourLakers wrote:no shaq, no malone=lakers loss
we're no match for tha clips without those 2...kaman brand and wilcox will KILL our big men
Oh I do... this should be a very fast-paced game with Shaq out of our lineup.jsm0331 wrote:BDG I hope you got your tape ready, because there are going to be plenty of highlights from this one, especially Payton to Kobe
It is very important that both Kobe and Gary have huge games, if they don't that game won't be pretty. Also, the role players have to really step it up too. Walton, Russell, Cook, Fisher, and Slava all need to have a solid game, the can't be cold of off on their shots. Cook is going to see more time tonight, because Phil doesn't want to play Grant any more than 30 minutes...so he has to put some arc on that shot. Russell needs to take some 3's at least 5, hopefully he will make more than half of them, we need him to be aggressive on D against Richardson and Maggette. We need Fisher (who is hopefully out of his slum) to be on fire. Slava has to knock down some of the easy looks other team's give him, but at the same time he needs to use good judgment with his shot selection, and a must a strong defense against Brand because he will outscore and rebound Slava, but the question is by how bad. We need Walton to get some decent playing time, because he is a big spark to this team with his court vision and passing ability (I want to see Phil put him in there with Kobe & Payton some).
Payton/Jaric & Overton: Jaric is playing hurt and hasn't had much time for his foot to heal, since they played last night. We have to use this to our advantage, Payton has to attack and attack hard, Jaric won't be able to keep us because of his left foot, so Payton will be able to get by his or get free for an open shot. Overton will see some decent time, since Jaric won't play as much as usual, and Payton has to take advance of this matchup, Overton can't guard someone of Payton's caliber. Payton should be able to focus most of his energy on offense since Jaric won't be much of a threat and Overton's offensive game is almost non existent. Payton can have a very big game against them and needs to for us to have any hope of pulling away with a win.
Kobe/Richardson: Kobe has to play good defense against Quentin, because it doesn't take much for him to get into a groove and go off. This should be a good matchup, an aggressive Kobe should make it favor us though. For us to win, Kobe has to be aggressive for 40+ minutes, and has to attack the basket and shoot a lot of high percentage shots. With Shaq out it is necessary for him and Gary to do better than they usually do, Kobe needs to have his best game of this season tonight. I anticipate Richardson and Kobe will both score a good amount of points. Also, Russell and Fisher can't let Simmons have a good game, our second string needs to play good d on him, or he will put up 15+ points.
George/Maggette: Let's be honest Corey is going to destroy George. George won't be able to stop him from scoring on him, all we can hope for is a few decent defensive sequences by George and some improved passing skills. If George can at least stay with Maggette, we may get lucky and he may miss a few, if George can agitate his shot or have a constant hand in his face then we will have a little better chance of winning. Our big guys need to play excellent interior defense, because if they don't Maggette and Richardson will take it to the basket for an easy 2 every time they get the ball. Russell and Walton don't need to leave Rice open either, because nothing would make him happier than to light us up from downtown, especially a game winner.
Slava/Brand: this is where it is going to get real ugly. Slava already has weak D as it is, and we are going to suffer against Brand. Brand will back Slava down and move him wherever he wants. Brand is going to out rebound Slava on the glass. I don't know what to say...I guess if Slava makes his fair share of shots and at least stays with Brand, that's all we can ask for. Cook will also see a few minutes here, hopefully he can make a couple baskets. One thing that will be to our advantage, Slava and Cook both like to shoot mid range shots, if they can try to stay in that area and take most of their shots from there, then it will free up the paint, because Brand will have to go out and guard them...then hopefully Kobe and Payton can use that to their advantage and attack the hoop more when this occurs.
Grant & Cook/Kaman & Wilcox: Clippers win this matchup too. Grant is slower and older than Kaman, if Grant can at least pull down 10+ rebounds I will be happy. Kaman and Wilcox aren't huge offensive weapons, but can score. Grant needs to have a good shooting night, and draw his defense out too, to clear out the paint. Cook is going to see a decent amount of minutes tonight, because Grant won't play for more than 30 minutes, so this means we will get to see what Cook can do. Last time he went in for garbage time, this time that won't be the case. He will be playing in a close game, where he has to put forth everything he got. Hopefully he found some arc for that shot of his or otherwise every shot he takes will get packed. If Cook helps us at all, I will be pleasantly surprised.
BryantDunkGiant wrote:Expect Cook to put up a decent game tonight.
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