Who can beat the Lakers in the West?
We all used to say, the Mavericks or the Nuggets are going to defeat the Lakers either in the 2nd round or in the Conf. Finals. But now... The Mavs and Nuggets both face a pivotal game 5 as they are both down 3-1. Not a simple 2-1. This is a 3-1.. They must win 3 straight games against a team that they have gone 1-3 in their last 4. Could either of these teams comeback? The Jazz are playing out of their mind and even though they can't guard Melo, they just score more than the Nuggets while putting up crazy numbers. The Spurs are getting their wins the way they usually do, with boring fundamentals and defense, (Which is the way to win).
So now, who's #2 in the West?
the bad thing for the lakers is that they might not get past the thunder. The good thing is that if they do, im not sure they will face anybody much tougher. The west is wide open this year and great balance 1-8 with all teams winning 50-57 games this year.
The way the Spurs are playing they'd probably knock off the Lakers.
I think any team can beat the Lakers esp. after seeing the young Thunder's performance the last 3 games.
Regarding the Mavs have to blame Rick Carlisle a lil for not making needed changes to the lineup. He doesn't play Stevenson who can play some defense and he has Dampier in the game guarding Duncan who wasn't a factor in Game 4 instead of Haywood who's the better offensive player. Kidd is laboring out there and has been off the last 2 games I'd try small ball for a few mins w/Barrea, Terry, Butler, Marion and Dirk. I still think the Mavs won't go down w/out a fight in but winning 3 in a row will be tough.
The Nuggets just don't play enough defense and aren't smart enough to beat a very good Jazz team that has the best PG in the game. The Suns and Blazers who knows the winner of that series faces the Mavs or Spurs so good luck beating either of those teams. I don't like the Suns chances w/out Lopez, the Blazers - Spurs matchup would be fun to watch.
honestly, i dont even know if they can get past the damn thunder. also, even though i would want to see a kobe/lebron final, i think if the thunder win this series, they can make a serious run to the finals. which i would be fine with a kevin durant/lebron finals as well!
I think anyone could take out the Lakers theoretically.....but teams that don't play a lick of defense ie. Suns and Nuggets are a lot less likely.....
Could you imagine if the Thunder got to the finals? Scott Brooks would become God. I think the Lakers are looking a bit fragile, so anyone could take a run at them. However, i don't think the Jazz or Spurs are better than them. The Mavs in my mind are equal, but i can't understand some of Rick Carlisle's decision making. WHY does Dampier get so many minutes? Can anyone give me a reasonable answer? Because i can't understand it. Also Beaubois is stuck at the end of the bench, which i think is a mistake. I still think it will be a Lakers-Cavs final...just.
I would like to see Beaubois coming in instead of Barea.. I'm not a big fan of Barea.h
I wouldn't count Dallas out just yet. I think they definitely win game 5 at home. Game 6 is the crucial one. They played San Antonio tight last night, even having a double digit lead at halftime. They just couldn't close, and George Hill played more like George Gervin last night. If they can somehow find a way to win game 6 (assuming they win game 5), I think they would have game 7 locked at home. And don't forget about what Dirk did to SA back in 06'. He played out of his mind in the deciding game of that series. It could come down to that scenario again.
As far a Denver goes, I picked Utah to win in 7before the series started so I'm not all that surprised at how this one is playing out. I didn't think that the absence of George Karl would hurt the Nuggets so much though. They don't look like the team they were when they were beating up on the Lakers and sweeping the Cavs during the regular season. And Deron Williams is cementing himself more and more as the best PG in the game. Is it possible that Williams and Boozer are the next Stockton and Malone? Malone and Stocktons Jazz teams in the early 90's always were competitive, just could never get over the hump. Could this be the year they do it. A second round matchup against a stumbling Lakers team could be all they need.
Ultimately I think the Jazz or the Mavericks/Spurs winner are their toughest competition. But they better worry about finishing off OKC before they get too ahead of themselves.
Im pretty sure will will get past the thunder. These same things were said when we lost to the rockets last year after getting blown out in houston. The problems we are having with the thunder we wont have with the other teams because they arent young and full of so much energy like the thunder. This is the worst team for a player like odom to play against because green matchs up so well with him and hes very young. plus the other teams arent fast break teams like OKC (except PHX).Whats funny is while im typing this they are saying the exact same thing on espn. As far as Dallas and Denver both of them are DONE. Utah is not losing in Utah and Dallas is overrated( like i told many on here all season long)
I thought you got banned?
A healthy San Antonio always was and always will be the greatest challenger. While LA can throw plenty of long bodies at Duncan, the only thing that slows him are injuries. Parker and Hill are much too quick for Lakers points. San Antonio has the defensive ability to get stops in big situations and limit second chances. If Kobe is not healthy enough to take advantage of the Spurs lesser wing defenders who will be guarding him, they could be in trouble.
I don't see Utah being able to match up with LA's length or get enough stops. Phoenix is having a nice resurgence, but they cannot simply try to up the pace and challenge the Lakers to try and score 110. If a team doesn't put forth great defensive effort, the Lakers can outscore anyone.
^^^^ i agree the spurs are the only other team i kinda worry about but i dont think they can beat the lakers with a hurt duncan. hill will give problems but hill isnt very consistant just yet. artest will have a much easier time against jefferson. the biggest problem for the spurs will be gasol and bynum.
i was banned and didnt ask to get unbanned but some how i was so im guessing it was a mistake since i was gone for a month then came back and was banned that same day for nothing. weird
Utah or Portland would be the toughest matchups next. As good as the Spurs are playing, Lakers always play them well regardless. Utah has been playing mind blowing in faucets of the game. Lakers should beat OKC. Phil Jackson should not lose with home court against a team that is weak up front. Lakers tend to play like this the year they won it all. They have up and down games. They did the same against Orlando but made big plays to win it all.
I like the way the Lakers match up with San Antonio, although I do think San Antonio can make it a tough 6 game series. San Antonio is the toughest matchup for LA, because they defend very well and can go on long scoring runs too. George Hill, although not quite the slasher Westbrook is, can do alot of what he does, and is a better shooter. He could give LA some serious problems in some games. Tony Parker and Ginobili are who they are, great players. The Spurs have the best chance to go for the run.
The spurs are the only team with bigs to match up with LA's bigs when they play big (LA).
The thunder are not going to beat LA at home, at least I don;t think they can.
THe Jazz with out Okur are to small and to inexperienced with that big ass young boy in the middle.
D will would kill the Lake Show but I don't think they would win, if the lakers played with intensity.
They seem to be playing with little intensity right now, and Kobe is still off.
the lakers aren't going to beat the thunder, so.
Well, They're already losing to the thunder right now (2-2)so,,,..
But if they win i dont really think theres any better competition, i dont see Dallas or Denver Winning their Series, and i dont see the The Jazz,Spurs or Phoenix beating them
yeah you always get those that think the lakers are gonna lose just because they lose the away game even though they do this every year. Houston blew them out as well. i dont think the spurs bigs can match up with the lakers at all. duncan will have big problems with gasol because hes not the same duncan even though hes still good and Antonio will have problems with bynum or odom or if duncan is on bynum. Its sad watching Duncan because even though he is still pretty good he obviously has lost some steps and he looks like hes hurting.
I dont worry to much about the jazz because we seem to have there number and there front line cant defend. boozer doesnt have to play great defense against denver because kenyon isnt a great scoring threat but gasol is. Anyway we arent in a position to look ahead because we have our hands full with okc
I've been extremely disapointed with the Lakers play so far. They just dont seem very good at all. Kobe takes alot of bad shots...ALOT. He doesnt get to the rim at all, and he cant get open looks. All he does is take fade away jump shots with a hand in his face and its not working at all. Artest thinks he is a 3 point shooter for some reason...Fisher thinks he can score for some really odd reason (he shouldnt be allowed to shoot the ball). The only time they run good offense is when Gasol is the focal point, but unfortunatly they wont do that because they are the Lakers and Robin was never the main hero in any Batman movies. I think they will beat the Thunder, but its going to be a battle.
I think they have a good chance against Utah because Boozer always struggles against the Lakers, and Utah doesnt have to Wings that can guard Kobe, but even Utah could really give them trouble as Deron Williams would be the best player in that series (yeah I did just say that).
I dont know what to think anymore though...I really thought Dallas was going to control the playoffs and get to the finals, but they are getting steamrolled by a very good under the radar SA team that is finally healthy. The Nuggets are a mess, they dont play defense at all and I'm really disapointed with Billups play so far.
Every single team in the West can beat the Lakers, but the way matchups are going to play out, I think we could have a Lakers Spurs western conference finals in a couple of weeks.
I doubt the Thunder knock off the Lakers, but I don't think you can compare this series to the one last season vs Houston. The Lakers aren't the same team. The main difference is Kobe isn't healthy. It's also safe to say that so far, Artest isn't making the impact that Ariza did. The bench play isn't as good either.