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LAst Night's Action: Lakers Off to a Good Start

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Kobe and the Lakers fly to their first win. AP Photo/Kevork Djansezian

LA Lakers defeat Portland Trail Blazers 96-76. Um wow. If that's what the Lakers will look like all season, I might have underestimated them. For years the words "Lakers" and "defense" couldn't be said in the same sentence without a snicker, but seeing the beat down they handed to Blazers just changed all of that. Kobe Bryant led all scorers with 23 points while ex-Bruin Trevor Ariza notched a surprising 11. The word of the night was indeed defense with the Lakers holding the Blazers down to 34.5% shooting. Playing in his first NBA after rehabbing his knee last season, Greg Oden left the game in the first half after injuring his right foot. Oden went scoreless in 12:51.

Notable Notes

  • The San Diego Chargers fired defensive coordinator Ted Cottrell. It's about damned time. This season under Cottrell the defense has regressed. But it shouldn't come as a surprise since every team he has led on defense have progressively gotten worse during each year of his tenure. Ask the Jets. Ron Rivera will take over for Cottrell. Known as part of that 1985 Bears team, he was the defensive coordinator for the Bears during the back-to-back NFC Central titles in 2005 and 2006 going to the Super Bowl in 2006.
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  • Isiah Thomas, how much do I love you? Ok the ambulance was called to Thomas' house because someone overdosed on sleeping pills. The police said it was a 47-year old man who od-ed, the same age as Thomas. Thomas claimed it was his daughter who had od-ed, throwing yet another person under the bus. Sources have said that it was indeed Thomas who od-ed. Um. The CBA. The Knicks. Now he wants to take himself down? WHEN WILL THE MADNESS END?! And we thought things would be quiet down once he was reassigned from the head coach and general manager positions of the Knicks.
  • And finally, here it is. Kobe Bryant, Alex Rodriguez, Tony Hawk and Michael Phelps playing Rock Band.
  • Tonight's Action

    LA Lakers at LA Clippers. It's the Clippers season opener! One of the weaknesses the Lakers have had recently is defending good point guards. And the Clippers have one of the best with Baron Davis. It should be an interesting game. 7:30 pm KCAL 9 (Lakers), KTLA 5 (Clippers), ESPN (National), AM 570 KLAC (Lakers), AM 710 KSPN (Clippers).

    Tampa Bay Rays at Philadelphia Phillies. It will pick up in the bottom of the sixth inning. Maybe. Who knows? But I guess that's what you get for having a baseball game in an inhospitable climate in the end of October. 5:00 pm FOX, AM 790 KABC.

    Detroit Red Wings at Anaheim Ducks. The Ducks have rebounded quite nicely since their horrific start, but the champs are in town. 7:00 pm FSN Prime Ticket, AM 830 KLAA.