I don’t care that the Nuggets have never rebounded from losing Game One to go on to win a best-of-seven series.
I don’t care that Phil Jackson is like 41-o when his teams win Game One of a series.
I don’t care that J.R. Smith had an obvious jumpball circle violation.
I am once again scared of the Denver Nuggets. Petrified.
First off, let’s not blame Trevor Ariza. So, he let a ball slip away. He had several steals and plays that kept our Lakers in the game, and won the last game with a big steal. Blaming him for the loss is like blaming Barack Obama for the economy. Or blaming Leonardo DiCaprio’s acting for The Beach. It’s just downright silly.
Who you can blame is Pau Gasol. Who you can blame is Derek Fisher.
Pau, when you are All-NBA, you have to hit clutch free throws. You definitely can’t choke on almost all of them.
Derek Fisher, you have no business starting or even playing that much in this series. Phil, I understand you trust D-Fish, but it’s time to let Jordan Farmar and Shannon Brown sink or swim. Start Jordan on Dahntay Jones and let Kobe Bryant continue to check Chauncey Billups. Hell, if Dahntay Jones goes off for big points and beats us, then so be it. I think we can take our chances. If that fails, bring Brown off the bench and have Kobe and Lamar Odom help with the ballhandling. Both Brown and Farmar have earned more playing time. D-Fish is on his way to losing this series for us.
Also, Sasha Vujacic is dead to me. I want to do the same thing to this Machine as Michael Bolton did to the copy machine in Office Space. He has a serious, serious confidence problem. Why not just shelf him for the year? Hopefully, Kobe cussed him out in Italian on the bench after his horrendous shooting display. Right now, he’s like a way less accurate version of Von Wafer. That’s not good.
Andrew Bynum was a ghost in the second half, too. Helluva magic trick, making a 7-foot, nearly 300-pound man completely disappear.
It’s just one loss, and there were many positives. For now, however, Denver has homecourt advantage and George Karl outcoached Phil Jackson by going to Linas Kleiza. Great adjustment there (especially considering that he looked like he caught a case of sun poisoning). How will Phil and his Lakers counter in Denver on Saturday night?