Back to Boston

The Lakers played their best game of the series thus far, and hung on to defeat the Celtics 103-98. The series now moves back to Boston for the duration with the Celtics up 3-2. Despite the win, one doesn't get the sense that the Lakers have had an outstanding 48-minute effort yet in the Finals. The team has had severe defensive lapses, and made multiple inexcusable mistakes.

It almost seems remarkable that the Lakers managed to win this game in spite of themselves. They had a 19-point lead in the first half and 14-point lead in the 4th quarter, yet the game still felt like a nail-biter. Fortunately, for the Lakers, Kendrick Perkins' injury and Kevin Garnett's foul trouble left the Celtics soft in the middle. It seemed like Kobe Bryant recognized that, and deferred regularly in the second half to Pau Gasol (19 points, 13 rebounds) and Lamar Odom (20 points, 11 rebounds). It's not that either player was dominating, but the combination of the two made the difference in tonight's game.

I'm watching the Phil Jackson press conference as I write this, and he just said that the Lakers played hard throughout, but not smart at times. That's a pretty apt way of putting it. If the Lakers have any hope of winning in Boston, then they need to make smarter decisions. They also need to figure out how to guard Paul Pierce, who played all 48 minutes. Pierce has easily been the best player in this series, and with the exception of Game 3, the Lakers have had no answer for him defensively.

Still, the Lakers live to fight another day, and if they find a way to steal Game 6, then anything can happen in a Game 7.

June 15, 2008 9:11 PM • 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
Gary Leonard | Take My Picture Gary Leonard is a regular weekly feature of LA Observed.
Jenny Burman | He was lucky to be white.
Steve Harvey | Steve Harvey collects signs and observations from around Southern California.
Iris Schneider | Outside City Hall, friends and family of California inmates identified as innocent by the California Innocence Project pleaded for Governor Brown to commute their sentences for the holidays.
Don Shirley | More than once, I've asked publicly how Center Theatre Group can possibly justify branding itself as 'LA's Theatre Company.' So I was fascinated when Diane Rodriguez, one of CTG's three associate artistic directors, raised the subject in an interview. Plus: Current stage reviews.
Jon Christensen and Mark Gold | A dramatic, wrenching, and potentially pivotal story is unfolding in the environmental movement right now. It came to a head last week after Michael Brune, executive director of the Sierra Club, posted messages in solidarity with #blacklivesmatter.
Judy Graeme | Two of the Sugar Plum Fairies in Westside Ballet's production of The Nutcracker have traveled very different paths to the iconic role.
Bill Boyarsky
By listening carefully to the new Los Angeles Times publisher at Town Hall Los Angeles Wednesday, it was possible to get a sense of Austin Beutner. It was also possible to see where he may be taking the 133-year-old paper.
Bill Boyarsky
On Wednesday, Austin Beutner, the new publisher and CEO of the Los Angeles Times, will, hopefully, shed light on the future of the paper when he speaks to civic leaders at Town Hall Los Angeles. Here are some questions he could be asked.
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
Here we are on Tuesday before the rain: And here we are this morning, just after:...