Monday, June 21, 2010

Lakers 16th Championship Celebration Parade

(click on photo to view gallery)

How do you get over the dread of a Monday morning? Well, you could always go to a Lakers championship celebration parade. Heck, it happens so often its become the common out of office excuse. Although the turn out this year wasn't as close as last years celebration parade, still thousands of Lakers fans showed up to help cheer on the champions as they cruised down Figueroa Street on they victory buses from the Staples Center to USC.

Every year I get to share the Lakers championship celebration parade experience with great friends both new and old. Having an old high school buddy whom I haven't seen for over 15 years drive down from El Cajon to share the experience and also having a great friend who lives downtown and who knows the intricacies of Los Angeles all added up to an awesome day. As Ice Cube would put it, today was a good day. Thanks John for thinking of an old friend and thanks Norman for always opening your door for me.

As we hit the street scene 3 hours before start time to hopefully find an open spot along Figueroa we surprisingly found one quite easily. As we sat in anticipation we observed the crowds and absorbed the environment to help kill the waiting time. The scene had many half-crazed fans but again not as many as last year. Maybe the fact that the Coliseum celebration was excluded from the itinerary or maybe last years parade was a bigger deal because of the seven year gap (02-09) from the previous Lakers championship was the cause for the decreased numbers, who knows. Either way, we were here and so was the greatest NBA team ever.

After hours of having staring contests with the police guards, the moment had arrived! The roar of the crowd from the left of us waving in warned us of their arrival. The first two buses were occupied by the Laker Girls, media and friends and the the following buses were occupied by the back to back champs and several Laker legends. Tip toes and all I viewed in to catch a glimpse and all of a sudden I see Kobe. With his hands up and a smile a mile long, he received the love from the fans with open arms. The familiar chants of MVP, MVP met his ears and our voices were heard! I know life is all about certain moments, that moment alone I will always keep.

Lakers 16th Championship Celebration Parade Photo Gallery

Click on each photo to enlarge



Click here to see more photos of the parade celebration!


Thursday, June 17, 2010

Lakers 16th Championship Celebration Parade Info

LAKERS PLANNED PARADE ROUTE

Source: Lakers.com

The Los Angeles Lakers will host a celebratory parade for all local fans on Monday, June 21, starting at STAPLES Center and traveling south on Figueroa Street to Jefferson Boulevard, just north of the USC campus and Galen Center.

By defeating the Boston Celtics for the 2010 NBA championship, the Lakers not only earned the franchise’s 16th league title but also repeated as champions for the third time in the past decade. The Lakers have won back-to-back titles a total of seven times in franchise history, tying the NBA mark previously held by the Celtics. Tonight’s victory marks only the fourth of the Lakers’ 16 NBA titles that went to a deciding seventh game, and the first time besting the Celtics in a seventh game.

Based on attendance for the 2002 NBA championship parade and last season’s festivities, team and City officials anticipate a crowd of between 500,000 and 2 million fans lining the two-mile parade route along South Figueroa Street.

While the City of Los Angeles and hometown Lakers held an accompanying rally attended by more than 95,000 inside the Coliseum to mark the 2009 championship, this time around, players will interact with fans from a customized flat-bed float, equipped with audio capabilities. That will help to mitigate anticipated pedestrian and traffic congestion, while also relieving security, sanitation and other civic demands otherwise required of the privately funded 2010 ceremonies.

Beginning at approximately 11 a.m. (PDT), Lakers players and their families will board the customized float at STAPLES Center, and begin winding their way down South Figueroa Street toward the USC campus before turning east on Jefferson Boulevard at the Galen Center to complete the parade. A convoy of double-decker, open-air buses and other attending vehicles will carry Lakers coaches and staff, members of the Buss family ownership group, team officials, and the Laker Girls to the conclusion of the two-mile route.

City officials recommend that, whenever possible, fans take the Metro Rail system to the Pico/Chick Hearn station adjacent to the parade route rather than attempt to drive into the STAPLES Center and Figueroa area. Parking will be available in the downtown lots surrounding STAPLES Center and the Figueroa corridor, yet street closures beginning the night before are likely to make morning traffic far more difficult.

The City anticipates closing Figueroa Street between Olympic Boulevard to the north and Jefferson Boulevard on the south beginning at midnight Sunday. Other road closures include Chick Hearn Court between Figueroa Street and Cherry Street; Cherry Street between Olympic and Pico Boulevards; Flower Street between Washington and Jefferson Boulevards; Jefferson Boulevard between Figueroa and Hoover Streets; and all intersections along the two-mile route as designated by the Los Angeles Police Department and Department of Transportation. LAPD and DOT anticipate reopening major intersections along Figueroa Street as the parade commences, pending pedestrians in those areas having dispersed and other safety conditions being met.

Los Angeles Lakers are World Champions once again!!!

2010 NBA Finals
Los Angeles Lakers (1) vs Boston Celtics (4) @ Staples Center
Game 7 - L.A. wins 83 - 79
Lakers win the 2010 NBA Finals

Lakers beat the Boston Celtics in game 7 to once again claim the title of being back to back champs! The victory wasn't as easy as game 6 nor as pretty however. After being down by 13 at one point, the Lakers chances of carrying the Larry O'Brien at the end of the night was diminishing by the minute. The Celtics played great defensively and had a stop for every Lakers strike. If you looked at tonight's game stat sheet, Lakers should have honestly lost but Boston over-looked the hearts of the champions who never say die. Boston had all starters in double figures and had much higher shot percentages. So why did Boston lose?

Ironically where the champs typically lose games, the 4th quarter was where the champs took over and fooled Boston into thinking that the game was actually over. Boston was not ready for L.A.'s final 13-3 run late in the game.

Here are tonights key players. Artest was hungry for his 1st ring and showed his teammates how hungry he really was. He had 20 points and a game high 5 steals. He was the one player who kept his team in contention until the miraculous last quarter. Gasol scored 19 and had 18 rebs (9 OREBS), D. Fish was clutch once again by hitting one of the games biggest trifecta in the closing minutes. The finals MVP went to none other than Mr. Kobe Bryant who had 23 pts. and 15 boards. Although team captain (6-24 FG) and teammates shot horribly in FG's and FT's in the first three quarters, Boston could not find a way to separate themselves with a significant lead to really seal the game.

This game, this season, this championship, this series against old rivals in Boston, this dramatic game 7 win meant EVERYTHING for the team, for the organization, for the fans and for the city. No. 16 was kismet for so many reasons.

Kobe and D. Fish get their 5th ring. Phil gets his 11th ring as coach, the organization gets their back to back championship titles, Lakers finally beat Boston in a game 7 and the champions are once again king of the world!

Yes we all despise Boston but they played their hearts out too. They deserve a thank you. Thank you Boston for making this series as exciting as it was to only lose in the final minutes of game 7. Thank you Pierce for saying the most ridiculous comments that came back to bite you in the arse. Thank you Big Baby for stating to the media that you would come into game 7 and win. A very special thanks goes out to KG who talked the most trash almost guaranteeing a championship season before the regular season had even begun. Yes, congrats to your Eastern Conference championship. Please don't misinterpret my thank you's as gloating...who am I kidding, of course I'm gloating! We are the champs!

And to those idiot hoodlums who cause destruction for any celebratory reason, please stay home, get high and play some MW2.

I LOVE L.A.! Lakers are the 2010 NBA Champs!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Game 6 - The Perfect Game

2010 NBA Finals
Los Angeles Lakers (1) vs Boston Celtics (4) @ Staples Center
Game 6 - L.A. wins 89 - 67
Series tied 3-3

This is THE moment to exhale. Game 7 it is. Lakers couldn't have played this game any better. What a team effort all around. The champs backs were against the wall and a must win was the only option in view. Lakers completely dominated and held Boston to only 67 points, the lowest point total for the Celtics of this post season and entire regular season for that matter. At one point L.A. led by a whopping 27 pts! Boston had as much of a chance to win tonight as I had to getting tickets for the game.

One thing I noticed was the high intensity of the very "knowledgeable" Laker fans making their voices heard. Kudos to those who were there, your roars and chants were heard all the way from my living room! You made an impact for sure.

The Lakers bench stepped up big outscoring Boston's second unit by 12. Odom crashed the boards bringing down 10 w/ 8 pts, Sasha shot well and led the bench with 9 pts going 3-6, Farmar played great defensively hustling for 3 steals and Shannon Brown igniting the crowd with two HUGE dunks. With those UPS, what can Brown do for you?!

This game was so big even the First Lady couldn't miss it! If the Lakers play this well every time she's in attendance, lets relocate the White House to Figueroa Street! Artest certainly noticed she was among the fans as he helped with 15 points and 6 rebs making tonight his best performance this series yet. Gasol got his 12th D-D, one assist shy from his T-D (17 pts w/ 13 rebs, 9 assists). Kobe yet again stole the show having another game high 26 pts and 11 rebs.

Thursday night will be the night L.A. brings home their 16th baby! The renewed rivalry as rendered by the media has become quite the show that we all wanted and didn't want at the same time. My nerves can not handle any more! Please Lakers, do what you did tonight in game 7!

Now to Bostons stats...nah...not important.

Click here for tonight's box score courtesy of Yahoo Sports!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Coming Back Home to Win the Championship

2010 NBA Finals
Los Angeles Lakers (1) vs Boston Celtics (4) @ TD Garden
Game 5 - Boston wins 92 - 86
Boston leads 3-2

Tonight Boston wanted it more plain and simple. All starters in green found a way to exhaust the Lakers, whether it was in their tag you're it defense, transition basketball or out-hustle plays, game 5 was easily for the home team. To me, the Lakers played tired before the first whistle had even blown and the Celtics took advantage of them being a step behind quickly with an 0-6 start. The Lakers defense was as visible as Lohan's court hearing appearances. L.A.'s D was stepping back to watch Pierce step back and nail his shots for a team high 27 points. Four Boston starters were in double figures vs L.A.'s two, Kobe and Gasol.

I can't stress the importance of how desperately we need someone else other than the usual 1-2 punch to show up and be the difference in the game. Artest isn't shooting well (2-9, 7 pts), Bynum is as good as his knee is (6 pts, 1 reb, 0 blocks), to me Fish is playing a little timidly (2-9, 9 pts). Lamar played okay tonight with the 26 minutes given, he had 8 pts w/ 8 rebs. I'm still waiting for his finals arrival though. Maybe the Staples Center will give him that extra push in games 6 and 7. Gasol had his 11th post season double double however Gasol is showing early signs of his alter ego Gosoft as his inside presence is becoming delicate again. His lay in's that should honestly be dunks are getting blocked from all angles.

Kobe can't do it all himself. He had a game high 38 points. Post game interview comments were focused on weak Laker defense but from a fan's observation his teammates were a little weak. Inside positioning was often denied and open shots weren't going in. His job was to help get his teammates more involved and to also have a 30+ point game. In the beginning of the game, team captain was in facilitator mode finding the open man for the open brick. After that song and dance Kobe realized that promoting team basketball wasn't going to win the game so he took over to meet his second objective of the night. No. 24 went off in the 3rd quarter by scoring 19 consecutive points while his teammates did little to help. Boston's lead never cracked under 6 points. The stat that stood out tonight is the games FG percentage. Boston went 56.3% to L.A.'s 39.7%.

Now, the champs are flying back home having to win games 6 and 7. The Larry O'Brien will only reside at the Staples Center if Kobe stops carrying the team. The man needs help and he's going to have to get it come this Tuesday and Thursday night. Honestly I would much rather lick a urinal clean than watch Boston win in L.A.

Remember, Boston won the title at home 2 years ago now it's time for us to win ours in L.A.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Mellow L.O.

It's time Lamar. L.A. needs you. The only way the champs are winning this Sunday is if somebody else besides Kobe and Gasol has a notable game like Artest did in game 1 and Fish did in game 3. Lamar needs to step up. He's only scored a total of 30 points the entire series, Kobe can regurgitate that from just one game, actually he did last night scoring 33.

Odom played great in the WCF against the Suns. After game 4 in that series he was averaging 14 pts and 12 boards. Now, after game 4 in this series he's only averaging 8 points and 5 REBS. I know foul trouble in games 1 & 2 played a major factor in the sudden downfall of productivity but still, as the go-to man off the bench L.O. needs to do much more than over dribbling and forcing shots. His hesitation is holding him back from being the Lamar Odom we all know, the lefty aggressor whose drive is more powerful than Tiger Woods.

The Candy Man is playing like a candy man. Way too sweet and way too soft. Lamar needs to bounce back from a disappointing 2010 Finals so far and be the deciding factor in a game 5 victory. The Candy Man can only if he plays like he truly can.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Big Baby Dribbles for Game 4 Win

2010 NBA Finals
Los Angeles Lakers (1) vs Boston Celtics (4) @ TD Garden
Game 4 - Boston wins 96 - 89
Series tied 2-2

Boston evens the series two games a piece. Big story for the Celtics was Glen Davis whose 18 points alone tied the Lakers bench total. Davis was everywhere tonight it seemed and pretty much out muscled L.A.'s defense for several inside shots that led to big 3 point plays. Almost the entire Boston team came out to play for that matter. Allen somewhat got out of his slump scoring 12 but also going 4-11 in field goals. Pierce had a team high 19 pts and the biggest small man on the court Nate Robinson was a huge second string trigger igniting the home crowd with big shots and animated excitement.

Once again L.A. relied on the all too familiar Kobe (33 pts) and Gasol (21 pts) show. Where was LO tonight? He had 10 points and often struggled to make a offensive decision, looking to pass the ball and over dribbling to drain the shot clock. We all knew coming into the game that Bynum wasn't going to be much of a factor as his knee was bugging him pregame but where was Fisher, Artest and the Lakers bench tonight?

In the end I came to almost accept the loss as it being okay. No big deal because I knew Boston was going to win one at home. Now it's time for the champs to win on Sunday and carry that momentum back to L.A. to close the series for their 16th title. I would much rather have the Lakers come back home on a winning drive rather than Boston entering the Staples Center on theirs if that makes any sense.

Click here for tonight's box score courtesy of Yahoo Sports!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Fisher Finishes Boston in Game 3

2010 NBA Finals
Los Angeles Lakers (1) vs Boston Celtics (4) @ TD Garden
Game 3 - Lakers win 91 - 84
LAL Leads 2-1

I don't EVER want to hear anymore s--- about Fisher. Oh he needs to retire or why is he still starting over Farmar? Derek, a veteran who never says die, was nothing less than spectacular tonight. Fisher was clutch in the 4th quarter and carried the team late in the game to help steal a MUCH needed win in Boston. D. Fish had his biggest game in these finals so far with 16 points. In timeouts you can see both Fisher and Kobe take over. I felt some comfort in that. One thing that bugged me all game long though was one stupid stat that didn't want to escape my brain. Pregame I heard a stat found by ESPN's research team stating that the last 10 teams to have won game 3 of the NBA Finals have gone on to win the championship. Sports radio also said that if you torture numbers long enough you can up with almost anything. Still this stat did its damage on me.

LO finally made his presence by scoring 12 points and grabbing 5 rebounds. This may not seem like a lot but compared to games 1 and 2, it is. A sports radio caller said today that he wanted to report an AMBER alert on Lamar for his disappearance since game 1. I thought that was pretty funny. Kobe had a game high 29 points with 7 boards and was his usual clutch-self with a late long 3 pointer to help keep a shrinking lead. I good sign in Kobe was his activity during timeouts. You can see the captain firing up his teammates and you can sense the importance of this game among the players. Artest only had 2 points but made a huge defensive play where he tapped the ball loose that went off of Davis' leg. That play resulted in a D Fish jay (where he was fouled by the way) that rebuild the lead to 6 points late in the game. Both big men played great. Gasol had his double double (13 pts/10 rebs) and has been consistent all post season long and Bynum was only one point shy from his double double (9 pts/10 rebs).

Boston started game 3 hot leaving L.A. in the dust with an early 7 point lead. KG was the spark that ignited the early run. He had a team high 25 points. Davis had some big "and 1" plays to help break into the decreasing Lakers lead in the closing minutes. He had 12 pts. Pierce was in foul trouble with 5 that limited his playing time but he still hit a couple crowd roaring 3 pointers. He ended the game with 15 points. The invisible man who was also invisible to the Lakers defense in game 2 was nowhere to be seen tonight. Ray Allen went 0-13 and 0-8 behind the arc thanks to some corrected Laker defense. Artest and Gasol both had blocks from several of Allens 3 point shot attemps. Allen only had 2 points, a very different game this time around. Rondo was only 2 assists short for his 10th double double in this post season. He had 11 pts.

This was a VERY IMPORTANT win for the champs. Fisher released his emotions in a post game interview, tearing up and expressing how hard a win this was as a team and how much he loves this game. This man is ALL HEART! The series is definitely not over and Luke put this win in perspective after the game by saying that the team won tonight but certainly not the championship. Look for Boston to come back with a vengeance Thursday night.

Click here for tonight's box score courtesy of Yahoo Sports!

Lets enjoy tonight's victory by first watching Paul Pierce's "We ain't coming back to L.A." video from game 2 and then D. Fishers pregame interview regarding those comments. Hey Paul you're right, you just might not be coming back to L.A. after all.

Click below for Derek Fisher's pregame interview regarding Pierce's comments in game 2. Notice the look he gives Jim Hill of CBS Sports. Fisher was determined to shut Paul Pierce up tonight and he clearly met his objective.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

The Fallen by Allen

2010 NBA Finals
Los Angeles Lakers (1) vs Boston Celtics (4) @ Staples Center
Game 2 - Boston wins 103 - 94
Series tied 1-1

After such a convincing victory in game 1, I was among those who automatically assumed that game 2 would have the same outcome. I honestly didn't put that much attention to Ray Allen since he wasn't a factor at all in game 1 due to foul trouble. The reality of my very naive wisdom started to sink in mid 1st quarter. The Lakers flawless post season record at home has come to an end. Oh boy, where do I begin. Boston's big stars had subpar games. KG only had 6 points with a measly 4 rebs. and Pierce had a gym pick up game 10 points. Seeing those stats alone would lead me to believe that the champs would dominate and take advantage of the unexpected subside. One thing, scratch that, two things they weren't prepared for were Ray Allen and Rajon Rondo.

Rondo was outstanding. He clawed and scratched his way through for his 2nd triple double this post season, having 19 points, 10 assists and 12 rebounds. The Lakers never regarded his presence in the paint and for that the scrappy Rondo ran in for 4 important OREBS, 2 of those late in the game. The bigger problem in this game for the Lakers was either their poor outside perimeter defense or Ray Allen's unbelievable ability to not miss his catch and shoot jays tonight, specifically his 3 pointers. I picked both to be problematic but the latter was inevitably going to happen the very second Allen made his first 3 pointer of the game. You can tell by the look on the Laker fans faces that the champs were going to be in a heap of trouble if Ray was given any disrespectful open shot.

Let the disrespecting begin. Before the start of game 2 the record holders for the most 3 pointers made in an NBA finals game was held by Scottie Pippen and Kenny Smith. Notice I used the word was because Allen openly (no pun intended) embarrassed the Lakers defense (or lack thereof) by hitting EIGHT 3 pointer's tonight and consequently now holds the record. Yes, I said EIGHT 3 pointers! Why were the screens so effective tonight? It's always the same broken record for Boston when it comes to executing the catch and shoot play for Allen. In my comfortable chase spectator mode, I can easily see the play forming, almost like a distant tsunami coming in but you're not quite sure it's a tsunami so you continue on your usual routine. Seconds later, by now beyond your control to do anything, the once casual observation has now become a certainty of fate. Tonight's loss was predetermined by a higher being and surely the Lakers lower defense.

Kobe getting into early foul trouble that mellowed his defense a bit and limited his playing time might have been the reason for tonight's loss but lets not discount the conservative games by Artest, D. Fish and the Lakers bench 15 point total also. The BIG stat that pops out for me are the 11 Boston 3 pointers vs the Lakers 5. Overall this game can only serve as a well documented lesson for the champs.

Now comes the truth of the matter. Lakers HAVE TO win at least one in Boston to close the series in Los Angeles. I truly believe that the champs are the better team as evident in game 1. They just have to work together and play GREAT defense. Tonight I saw confusion and frustration on the Staples Center floor for the 1st time this post season hence their 1st loss in L.A. in this second season. Lakers will bounce back, view lots of game tape and come into Boston ready for war. Bring on Garden!

Click here for tonight's box score courtesy of Yahoo Sports!

Laker highlights

Saturday, June 5, 2010

The Staples CENTERS

Photo source: Yahoo Sports!

As we all saw in game 1, Boston came out as a pleasantly surprising different team. To me they didn't seem as fast and as physical as previous playoff games have shown. But then again Boston is known to learn quickly from their mistakes and turn tables faster than DJ's. We all know or should know that Perkins is not 100% but at the same time Bynum isn't either. Bynum has to keep getting his knee drained and Laker fans, that's never good news. He's far too young to have this many injuries. This a clear indicator of a hindering future. Hunting down Chris Bosh in the offseason wouldn't be such a bad idea for Buss and Kupchak as I only see Bynum's health crumbling but seeing that Chicago will most likely sign LeBron, King James will have a major deciding influence into getting Bosh so this possibility of L.A. getting Chris, especially after another successful season, would be extremely difficult. Even after Bynum's offseason surgery, I still doubt the anticipated comeback fans are expecting to magically happen. Either way, whether it be in Bynums miraculous return to the team injury free or relying on the organization to find a working antidote, the future at our 5th spot is in good hands.

Now onto Gasol. Wow, as of today I'm still surprised on how we got him. It was like reaching into Memphis' pocket and stealing a pretty shiny quarter. Pau is averaging 20 points with 11 rebs. this post season alone. And with the recent contract extension earlier this season Gasol is going to continue to dominate as a Laker through 2013-14. The Spaniard has the best foot work out of all the big men in the league and guess what Laker fans, he can shoot free throws too unlike past Laker greats like Shaq. Big Diesel reminds me of a Dwight Howard, NO FOOT WORK AND NO FREE THROW SHOOTING! The only way these types of players can score is by elbowing for the easy dunk. If Shaq and D. Howard had a free throw contest, first to 20, the Sun burning out this planet's existence would occur first.

The nucleus of the team is in our big men (having Kobe doesn't hurt either) and it can be seen that L.A.'s bench is deep enough to where PJ can rotate the PF/C spots to fulfill big man gaps if they were to occur.

GOOO LAKERS!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Lakers Take Game 1

2010 NBA Finals
Los Angeles Lakers (1) vs Boston Celtics (4) @ Staples Center
Game 1 - Lakers WIN 102 - 89
LAL Leads Series 1-0

Was I the only one nervous as hell before tip off? In my mind, this NBA Finals is the most important one that I've been a part of. L.A. can win back to back NBA championships, win their 16th title, beat Boston for team redemption from '08, and tell the world that winning last years title was not a fluke just because Boston wasn't there. A lot is jeopardized.

Tonight's win was monumental as the champs set the tempo early in the series and now have momentum coming into game 2. Lets face it, winning in Boston won't be easy so entering TD Garden 2-0 will be a BIG cushion to have. Kobe's performance was simply awe-inspiring. He facilitated with poise, pushed teammates to get involved, and led the game with 30 points. Team Captain was just that, Team Captain. He led his team and composed a perfect 2010 NBA Finals Game 1.

Another Laker who shined tonight was the #2 punch Pau Gasol. I remember in last years championship celebration sitting in the blazing heat waiting for the champs to make their entrance into the Coliseum I heard for the first time, "Pau Gosoft". That bugged me because we just had won the title and I didn't expect to hear any Laker criticism that day. After tonight's performance, Gosoft should never be spoken of again. Pau Gostrong dominated in all areas of the game. He out-physicaled his defenders especially KG, containing him to just 16 points, he brought in 14 REBS (8 of those OREBS), scored 23 points and had 3 blocks. He did EXACTLY what he needed to do to make the early statement.

I have to admit I was among the Artest dislikers (hater is a strong word) when he joined the team. Now I feel stupid and applaud the decision to bring him on board. The move was designed to bring in more physicality and help defensively. Artest passed with flying colors but to be an offensive threat too? Artest is making his shots now, especially at the 3 point line. He went 3-5 tonight behind the arc. He has become a legitimate scorer and reliable outlet receiver for the open jay. Wait, there's more surprises to Ron Artest. Yes, I instantly thought of Rodman when I heard of Ron coming to L.A. and all the drama that usually comes with the label. Mental breakdowns, a flurry of fines, technical fouls, I mean an ultimate distraction for the champs. Boy was I wrong to assume that. Yes, he's had some social media issues but that really is nothing compared to is claim for the biggest fan related fight in NBA history. Let me share what I've read today if you haven't heard already.

I don't typically pay much attention to TMZ as their focus is on celebrity scorn but today they had an exclusive story on Artest. Ron paid out of his own pocket $18,0000 for two court side tickets to tonight's game. He said that most of his fans can't afford to buy tickets to games so he decided to partake in a local radio station contest for the giveaway to two lucky fans who would win. Throughout the season I would hear stories about Artest tweeting fans as to where he would be after local games so they can join him in celebration but I honestly wouldn't believed it. I came to be that Ron is just one of the guys who doesn't allow his celebrity status affect who he really is deep down inside. I can respect that 100%. Good for you Artest!

Game 1 seemed to be a fairly easy win and if the Lakers continue to play like this I predict a clean sweep!

Click here for tonights box score courtesy of Yahoo Sports!

Here are the Laker Highlights

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

The Finals in a NUTshell

Is it nuts to think that KG might actually pull it off? I mean he did guarantee that the Boston Celtics were going to win the 2010 NBA championship way before the regular season had even begun. Well, the moment has arrived and now it's time to say HELL NO! It's time for L.A. to avenge themselves from two years ago and demolish those green oompa loompas! We all know Boston has 17 NBA titles blah blah blah but the bigger story here is that the champs have the opportunity to go back to back and win their 16th Larry O'Brien! Those reasons alone make this rivalry so much sweeter. By winning the title for the 16th time in team history, the Lakers will only be two shy from becoming the all-time winningest franchise in NBA history.

Both teams are pretty familiar with the stage and what's at stake. Lakers need to show how they've grown into a much deeper squad since 08. With the new addition of Artest, they are now able to get more physical with the Celtic's bigs. Another area to look out for in Artest is his shooting. Will the 2010 NBA Finals show that he can hit the open shots? This post season has shown an up and down mental battle for Ron with his jump shooting, we all know he can sink them but will HE know that? His D will undoubtably show up but will he be able to slow Pierce down like he did in the regular season? Paul can not be stopped, just slowed down to a controlling halt.

This series will definitely come down to the bigs. For Boston, KG, Big Baby, Sheed, and Perkins will all be a factor. Bynum, Gasol and LO will HAVE TO come up taller and battle harder. Magic said in post game interviews in the 08 Finals that the Lakers were simply getting out physicaled. Perkins and Bynum are not playing 100% so will it show? I believe D Fish can win the 1 spot with Rondo because Fisher is the more physical player, granted the aging Fisher is not as fast as before but he can still get the job done in the clutch where the crumbling 4th quarter Lakers need him.

As for Ray Allen, wow what can I say, you give him some hardwood flooring and he'll give you some hardwood scoring. Lakers will need to defend around the expected run past the screen catch and shoot or it's lights out. For the NBA shooting elite, once the first shot drops, the rim becomes the ocean and the rock, well, becomes a rock. Breaking any rhythm early in the game is key.

Will Kobe's injuries finally catch up to him? Will he pull a LeBron and look towards his elbow if he has a shooting slump? Kobe will have to be nothing less than perfect against the Boston Four.

LETS GO LAKERS! (clap--clap--clap,clap,clap)