Looks like it will be six games and counting for the Los Angeles Lakers to go into battle without Kobe Bryant. His sore shin allowed Mamba to participate in light shooting today in practice but in all likelihood will keep him in coach mode for Tuesday’s tussle with the San Antonio Spurs.
Much has been made of the L.A.’s 4-1 record without Kobe. All four wins have come consecutively since that miserable showing in Phoenix.
No matter what hype you choose to believe know that it is fact this team is not better without Bryant. So far that hasn’t exactly looked the case given some of the quality wins the Lakers have complied including a blowout victory over the Spurs last week. Keep in mind we’re talking about the regular season. No chance a Kobe-less Laker team will have similar results when the intensity is dialed up for the playoffs.
The Lakers aren’t going to catch the Spurs for the second seed but they can certainly plant more seeds of doubt in San Antonio. Another win over their bitter rivals, both without KB24, will surely place plenty of doubt in the locker room ran by Greg Popovich. It will also help keep the Lakers sharp for the playoff push.
With only a handful of games left the Lakers have had the look of a team ready for postseason hoops. Tomorrow’s tilt is yet another playoff preview, hopefully not one we’ll have to see repeated without Kobe come the start of the postseason.