Support for LAist comes from
We Explain L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This

This is an archival story that predates current editorial management.

This archival content was written, edited, and published prior to LAist's acquisition by its current owner, Southern California Public Radio ("SCPR"). Content, such as language choice and subject matter, in archival articles therefore may not align with SCPR's current editorial standards. To learn more about those standards and why we make this distinction, please click here.

News

Dead Team Walking?

Stories like these are only possible with your help!
You have the power to keep local news strong for the coming months. Your financial support today keeps our reporters ready to meet the needs of our city. Thank you for investing in your community.
5b2bbfa44488b30009269b1b-original.jpg

The Lakers head into a must win game tonight in Phoenix (7:30 on KCAL 9 or TNT) with many fans and pundits thinking this is more a nationally televised execution than a playoff game. Look at the reports from yesterday’s Laker practice and the same feeling seems to have washed over the team.

Not to worry though Laker fans, you’ve got Phil Jackson’s amazing motivational tools: “I did tell them that they had the brainpower of slugs or earthworms.”

Okay, so maybe things are pretty grim. Phil really did say that after practice yesterday. Still, the Lakers have a plan for beating the Suns -- aggressive defense on the pick-and-roll and pound it inside on offense to soften up the smaller team -- and when they executed it properly for three quarters they got a win.

Support for LAist comes from

But “consistent execution” and “Lakers” are not words that should be in the same sentence this season. (Damn, I just did it.) Putting together one entire good game -- 48 minutes of committed basketball -- seems to be asking a lot. Doing it for three games in a row, the task now ahead of this team, looks like Everest.

That’s why many Laker fans, and the smart pundits, have started looking ahead. Asking the “what’s next?” question before they are even eliminated from the playoffs. We’re not going to do that. We’re not going to get into potential shakeups of the roster until this team is officially eliminated.

So, check back tomorrow.

AP photo by Mark J. Terrill