A loss here makes the chances for a three-peat close to nil. Going on the road against Dallas, then San Antonio, and then Miami/Chicago is just too much. This team is missing something, their complete collapse in the 4th is similar to how they collapsed at the end of the season.
You don't win a championship in the regular season, but you can definitely lose one, and even after the Kobe three, they are painfully close to doing just that
"When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men living together in society, they create for themselves in the course of time a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that glorifies it." - Frederic Bastiat