""Close-out games are actually kinda easy, teams tend to fold if you come out and play hard in the beginning."
OK. First off, the entire team outside of Kobe sucked. But the quote above is the reason for this post. If you think it's all right for Bynum to run his mouth like that, Consider this:
- He's Not playing his hardest, consistently.
- He's never been counted on to close out a playoff series in his life.
- He's been the 2nd or 3rd best center in this series..
Yep. That's right. Bynum is getting outplayed by Javale McGee and Kenneth Faried. Outplayed, out hustled and out worked. He has shown a tremendous amount of disdain for playing defense outside of Game 1. Notice in the beginning of Game 5, after Bynum makes a basket, he just celebrates and doesn't even get back on defense. Kenneth Faried outruns him and gets the easy one, and all Bynum can do is get pissed at his teammates for not helping. I can't remember how many plays like that happened, where Faried or Mcgee just beat Bynum down the court. He hasn't shown on his coverages, he loses sight of both his man AND the ball (no excuse, none) and he's made Mcgee appear to be a quality NBA Calibur Starter.
Now we head back to that really high city where it's really hard for Bynum to play. This is from a player who doesn't expect but knows that the team is picking up his option at the beginning of the year. This loss is all on those giant, immature shoulders of Andrew Bynum.
Second Person to blame: Mike Brown.
The playoffs are all about adjustments. Mike Brown made zero last night. When Sessions and Blake were getting routinely posted up by Andre Miller (He went something like 8 -11) he just sat there, and did nothing. When Bynum was quoted as saying the above silly statement, he didn't even force his center to back it up by repeatedly going to him throughout the game and forcing him to stand up for his insane ideas about playoff basketball, he just let him mope around out there. When McGee was posterizing our interior defense, his vaunted defensive prowess did...still nothing. No adjustments. I'm pretty sure we were watching the same game and I'm pretty sure that he saw the same plays we all saw. for one, I can't help but wonder why he at least didn't try putting somebody else on him. Pau, Hill, McBob... anyone else. Because I'm pretty sure we've both watched just about every Laker game this season and if I can tell when Bynum is in Sleep mode, I can't fathom that he's sitting there wondering when someone will shake Bynum's mouse. Guess what? Mike Brown, it is you who has to shake the mouse and you do so by benching the moron.
Why didn't he put a bigger player like Barnes or Ebanks on Andre Miller when it was obvious that neither Blake nor Sessions could stop him from posting up and getting to the rack over and over? I was yelling at my TV screen over this about 3 minutes into the 3rd. Like Mike Brown, my TV offered no answers.
Had we won last night because Kobe pulled a miracle out of nothing it might have glossed over these humungous issues that will plague us the rest of the playoffs. I am glad Kobe didn't pull a rabbit out of his proverbial hat because this stuff NEEDS to be fixed and soon. One triple-double in a series does not a series win. One good game in a series does not make you a clutch post-season performer. The only player on the Lakers that has done it all in the playoffs is Kobe Bryant. Every other Laker on the team is dreaming if they think that what Kobe did in the 4th in Game 5 is something they can expect again in this series, to say nothing of the long road ahead.
Geez what happened to the Dominance in Game 1 and Game 2? The way LA is playing for the last couple games, it's Denver's series to lose and it's up to us to show that there is any playoff mettle in the line up outside of #24. And even if we win Game 7, we are not getting past OKC or SA like that . That was travesty and I hope I never have to watch that kind of BS again.