June 5, 2009

So, that was embarrassing

by Dan Bilicki In: Basketball

Kobe Bryant played last night’s game against the Magic with an intensity I haven’t seen from him in a long time. Even with the Lakers up big in the fourth quarter, Kobe was still driving to the hope trying to expand an already huge lead. What impressed me the most was the way he was driving to the basketball instead always going to his one-step-shoot move. It was shades of the old Kobe. There’s no way that Kobe will stopped this series.

On the other side of the floor, Orlando looked very stoppable across the board and just couldn’t get anything going. Rashard Lewis shot 2-for-10 and was largely non-existant. Hedo Turkoglu’s ugly mug shot an uglier 3-for-11 and Superman was largely disappointing, only hitting one field goal on his way to a 12-15 game.


How about Josh Powell’s open three at the end of the fourth to make the game an even 100-75? If I was the Magic, I’d be taking exception to that buzzer-beater to end the game.

J.J. Redick: Kobe stopper. Yeah, right. Just because Redick stopped Bryant on his three attempts, doesn’t mean that he’s the answer to guard the Black Mamba. I’m really looking forward to see Kobe torch J.J. in Game 2 if Van Gundy is dumb enough to matchup them up.

So, was all that coverage of Jameer Nelson’s return really worth it? 22 minutes and 6 points?  A-19 plus/minus? Wasn’t he supposed to be the Laker killer? Well, like I said in the preview, Nelson at 50% is the same as Anthony Johnson at 100%. Except Johnson isn’t a risk to aggravate a severe injury he should be rehabbing.

What is there expect for Game 2 now? For one thing, I don’t think Kobe will put up 40 again and I think the game will be closer than 25. But really, after watching the way that the Magic played last night, I’d be betting against them in Game 2. Going back to Orlando for Games 3-5 are a different story though.

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