Are they for real?

Are they for real? That's the question everyone has about the Lakers after their impressive 122-115 victory over the Suns on Christmas Day. At 18-10, the Lakers are just one game behind Phoenix and Dallas in the West, and two behind San Antonio. As Mark Heisler points out in the LA Times today, the Lakers rise is coinciding with the West's elite teams faltering a bit.

The real key to the Lakers success is Andrew Bynum, whose 28 points on 11-of-13 shooting with 12 rebounds has Los Angeles buzzing today. All of that hard work with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar appears to be paying off, as Bynum suddenly looks like a top-flight NBA center.

"I don't know if he's up and coming," Suns Coach Mike D'Antoni said. "He's there."

Still, it's way too early to start celebrating. The Lakers got off to a nice start last season before faltering in January. Andrew Bynum also looked good early last season, before he seemed to wear down and lose his edge. Anyone can in the NBA can have a few good games, but the real test for Bynum will be for him to sustain his high level of play throughout the entire season. Opposing coaches are going to scout Bynum and find ways to weaken him. How he adjusts and how he deals with this newfound attention will paramount to the Lakers hopes. Right now though, things are looking awfully good.

December 26, 2007 10:32 AM • Native Intelligence • Email the editor
 

© 2003-2014   •  About LA Observed  •  Contact the editor
LA Biz Observed
2:07 PM Sat | The funeral for Mark Lacter will be held Sunday, Nov. 24 at 12 noon at Hillside Memorial Park, 6001 W. Centinela Avenue, Los Angeles 90045. Reception to follow.
Native Intelligence
Iris Schneider | More than 300 fans of the written word, Hollywood-style, packed the Ricardo Montalban Theater on Vine Street Saturday night for the latest performance presented by The Blacklist.
Donna Perlmutter | Verdi's "La Traviata" can withstand almost anything. It's nearly indestructible, and sometimes irresistible.
Ellen Alperstein | Members of the L.A. Zoo Safari Society needn't trek to Africa to pet an Angolan python.
Jon Christensen and Mark Gold | Two California lakes: the Salton Sea, a festering manmade disaster in the desert, and Tulare Lake, a phantom lake, dried up by agriculture in the southern San Joaquin Valley. Not the first places one might expect to find hope in the Anthropocene.
Jenny Burman | It's a separate misfortune to attract harm to other people, and Marisol knew it, but she had made her decision.
Al Martinez | Martinez walks a lonely road once crowded with friends and colleagues such as John Wiebusch. Time has diminished the crowd and left only shards of memory.
Gary Leonard | Take My Picture Gary Leonard appears weekly at LA Observed.
Bill Boyarsky
Santa Monica’s Bergamot Station Art Center and its old industrial surroundings is a dramatic example of how rail transit lines are changing the appearance, the employment and residential style of a Southland shaped by the automobile
Jenny Burman
Before I lived in Echo Park, there was a tiny 1920s bungalow-cottage-standalone house on N. Occidental in Silver Lake. I...
Here in Malibu
PCH just south of Mugu Rock -- still one of my favorite local drives....