05-25-2008, 12:12 AM
NBA Legend and Hall of Famer
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Land of 16 NBA Championships
Article: Riverside Press Enterprise - Kobe to "crack the whip" on Lakers in San Anton
Source: Kobe to "crack the whip" on Lakers in San Antonio
Originally Posted by mad brad turner
Until it's over, until the Lakers win two more games to advance to the NBA Finals, they will not rest.
They actually may have the defending champion San Antonio Spurs on the ropes, after blowing them out Friday night to take a 2-0 lead in the Western Conference finals, but the Lakers know much work is left to be done.
Staying focused was the theme coming out of practice Saturday in El Segundo before the team boarded its flight to Texas.
"Our guys, I think, are serious about it," Coach Phil Jackson said. "They're not overconfident. At least we tried to really make them understand that nothing is accomplished but doing what we had to do to make these steps the right way."
The Lakers did more than just hold serve on their home floor: They came back from a 20-point deficit to stun San Antonio in Game 1, then they wiped them out by 30 in Game 2, perhaps placing some doubt in the minds of the Spurs.
"I'm not surprised that we've been able to win both games on our home court," point guard Derek Fisher said. "That's not a surprise to me. It's more so refreshing that we've been able to sustain our effort and our energy and win both games under totally different circumstances."
But the Lakers aren't holding onto those moments, and Kobe Bryant said he won't let his teammates think finishing the Spurs off will be easy.
"I crack the whip. ... All the time. That's what I do around here," he said.
In San Antonio, where tonight's Game 3 and Tuesday's Game 4 will be played, the Spurs were 34-7 during the regular season and are 6-0 in the playoffs.
They were down 0-2 to New Orleans in the conference semifinals, having been blown out twice on the road, and came back to win that series in seven games.
Coach Gregg Popovich was asked if there is any difference in being down 0-2 to the Lakers.
"It's 0-2," Popovich deadpanned. "It's not different."
Only 19 other teams have come back from that deficit to win a series.
When the home team wins the first two, it wins the series 94 percent of the time.