Tuesday, December 28, 2010
Dissecting the Champs
First it was the 5-5 Boykins who towered over the Lakers defense, then it was the Miami Grinch who stole Christmas and now tonight in San Antonio where L.A. laid more brick than Alamo stone. What's next for the champs? In a division where the west is typically owned by the Lakers, they now sit cold and alone in the fourth spot. We are way too good to be this mediocre.
Kobe has answered all media questions regarding the current slump for strategic reasons and he will continue to speak the truth if a team message can be taken from his efforts. Recently he said this after being asked about the lack of team direction and the upcoming San Antonio game:
"We haven't been really pointing at anything. That's been one of the problems," he said. "We don't really get too excited about anything any more. I'm excited about this game. I'm excited about the challenge of it. Hopefully the rest of the guys are too."
Tough choice words for fellow teammates. If anybody can get away with saying such words it's certainly team captain. If he remains quiet about these types of situations then he isn't doing his job. I know Kobe has to fill a very demanding leading role but teammates shouldn't rely on his leadership (or lack thereof) and stray away from a system that works when operated as a complete unit. When we resort to Kobe offense, 9 out of 10 times we'll lose. These past couple of losses have proven so. When Kobe goes 9-16, 6-16, and 8-27, teammates have to help pull the load. Even though it's obvious that the team is missing everything but ex-wives, there should still be much more shot attempts throughout. Lets look at tonight's numbers shall we.
Kobe had 27 shot attempts tonight, 27!!! Is Kobe going back to his old ball-hogging ways or is he just trying to over-compensate for teammates lack of execution? Shannon went 1-11 tonight; Fisher only had 2 points; Gasol had just 8 touches resulting in a less than average double-digit production; Odom had a reflecting 9 shots/9 points; Artest had 10 points going 4-9 (okay I guess); Blake went 1-5 with just 2 points: Barnes played well going 3-4 with 10 points and rookie Caracter gave us 5 points in just 2 minutes. Bynum needs to be more involved. He's way too rested to only have 4 shot attempts. He did however go a perfect 4-4 but PJ's 1-2 week limited minutes plan for Bynum before giving him starter minutes is a bit too, hmm, NFL Tuesday Night Game-ish.
The league is looking past the Lakers as serious opponents now and that's pissing me off. Seeing as the Hornets are just around the corner, Lakers need to recover quickly. We are the champs for crying out loud! Lakers will bounce back (they have to) and look back at these closing dark days of 2010 as just another slump they climbed over.