Here it is....
11:46: Gasol hits on the first Laker possession....McGee just gave him too much room right in the paint and Jamison had to push the kid in the back so he'd get up on him.
11:31: Butler easily takes Rad baseline for an up and under reverse layup.
D-Fish and Dee Brown trade threes. 5-5 tie.
Kobe is actually getting some boos from the Verizon crowd...call me impressed?
Boy the Lakers move the ball well....the Wiz have horse blinders on the Kobester. LA starts out 5-5 and are now up 12-5.
9:09: Awckh.....McGee picks up his dribble, Kobe won't let him hand off to Stevenson (scouting report studier, that Kobe) and McGee has nothing, panics, and throws the ball out of bounds.
8:55: Bynum three power dribbles....on your head McGee. 16-7 Lakers.
Jamison guns a trey....Stevenson guns a trey. Nope X 2
8:11: McGee doesn't try to block Bynum out, rather stands next to him and tries to board with one arm. Bynum offensive board, put-back and foul...he misses the FT. Tap Takes Timeout....Lake Show up 18-7, they're just about covering the 11.5 point spread.
Wiz don't run crisp plays, plus Lakers being students of the scouting report = craptastic.
7:32: McGee gets a put-back dunk...that's nice, but on defense, the kid has absolutely no chance of hanging with Bynum on the island that he is. Plus, Bynum doesn't mess around/waste time....very efficient in getting to the rim.
6:59: Not many realize what just happened.....while Steve Buckhantz says that Kobe's running attempt was swatted away by DeShawn Stevenson, I don't believe that to be the case. Kobe got right in the lane and caught in the air (Stevenson was there...trying to play good D and contest)....but in being caught, Kobe seemed to throw the ball hard right off the backboard, catch the carom himself and then feed it to Gasol for a baseline jumper. 22-9 Lakers.
6:46: Right down the court, Dee Brown is dribbling at the top of the arc. Jamison moves from left to right with his arms out, palms in the air as if to say "what are we running?....what's going on?" ---- Boy, we look "great" --- C'mon guys, the Lakers are good, but at least try to resemble an NBA team. The play ends up with Butler shooting a baseline jumper, missing, but McGee got a rebound over the statue Bynum and displayed excellent footwork to maneuver for a dunk.
This Kobe Bryant doesn't try to use his crazy athletic skills to juke and jive his way to the basket. No, he is much more methodical now, using his strength to just buck-down DeShawn Stevenson and get where he wants.
Tapscott gradually gets his big lineup of Blatche, Songaila, Jamison, Butler, Stevenson in the game. Something about Butler at the 2-spot still makes me uncomfortable.
Little Things: Wiz have a 4-1 break, D-Fish being the only Laker back, and do not convert. How it happened:
- D-Song played some tough D on Bynum who missed a shot that was also contested by Jamison.
- Blatche secures the rebound and immediately outlets to Butler who brings it up slightly to the left of the center of the court.
- Songaila and Jamison run the right-hand lane, but are essentially parallel to each other all the way to the basket. What I would like to see is Jamison let Songaila have the lane, and since he is a shooter, fade to the three point line.
- Blatche runs the court too, but right down the middle.
- So on the other end, Butler ends up at the left elbow and the other three Wizards are all bunched up on right of the length-wise center court line. I would have liked to see Butler center the ball more and for Blatche to bust his ass running down the left hand side.
- Butler hesitates and fakes to D-Song for a second, but ends up pulling up for the short jumper.
- Blatche lets Vlad slightly nudge him out of position, none of the bunched up Wiz can get the board.
- The ball is tipped out by Vlad. D-Fish beats Butler to it. Easy Kobe Bryant points.
- Steve Buckhantz has the gall to say "That's unfair" Damn right it is....unfair to us bozos having to watch this crap.
They come back from commercial on Comcast talking about Abe Pollin's birthday and showing video of him sitting, his wife next to him, and....GOOD GOD!, someone is holding this long ass cake from one end, all these candles are bunched up on the other end of the cake, just like the Wizards on a 4-1 break, right near Mr. Pollin....who is barely able to pay attention. Somebody is going to catch that poor old man on fire.
Buckhantz goes on to say that people called Pollin "crazy" for wanting to put an arena in downtown DC. Really? The must be that Gilbert Arenas-esque revisionist history because I remember pretty much everyone being all for it.
Meanwhile....I've written way too much for one quarter, the Wizards are running their offense like a tractor built by a 12-year old and the Lakers, even though up 32-17, are seemingly letting the Wizards "hang around"....and there are still two minutes left in the period.
I can't help but look at Gasol and think that his "street" clothes involve this shirt (link is crazy silly BTW...recommended read for all) Guess that's why his brother, Marc Gasol, is also swarthy.
Andray Blatche is making nice plays....way to show up when the expectations are zilch. If I seem to be hating everything right now, it's because I am.
After 1, 35-24 Lakers....Bynum has 10 points, Kobe has a bunch of shyte.
Daniels, Young, McGuire, Jamison, Etan in to start the 2nd....with Jamison getting the ball knocked away and it goes out of bounds off his foot.
Next time down the court, AD runs the break, tries to pass it to Etan....and it goes off his foot. Ed Tapscott is making Eddie Jordan frustration faces.
10:56: Nick Young against The Machine....he seemingly has the entire lane to just walk in and shoot a lefty layup after bodying up on "Sasha" (yes, I know...blog of unnecessary quotes, but when a dude is named "Sasha," his name should always be in quotes). So instead, Young opts for the fading jumper off one foot....miss.
9:00: Wait...WHAT? Wiz on a 12-0 run and Nick Young has just dropped a couple dimes? Oh , Kobe is out. 35-31 Lakers.
I just texted "Lil" to 68683 to win Lil' Wayne tickets....go me.
No lie, Pamela McGee is kind of a Milf.....a big ol' tall Milf that makes Chris Miller stutter while Pam is looking down on his bald head, but "kind of" a Milf nonetheless. Momma Pam says that JaVale is 7'1" with no shoes on....that is sick.
8:03: Damn Farmer can dunk....why did he get the fast-break opportunity? Little things....Jamison, a vet, tried to swing the ball "blindly" as Phil Chenier put it, to AD and it was easily picked off by Farmar. 41-33 Lakers.
7:45: Poor Taser....he surprisingly had the lane, ready for a throw-down....and travelled.
7:09: Kobe lackadaisically gives Nick Young the baseline who takes advantage with a sweet slam.
Wiz are shooting themselves in the foot, but the Lakers are doing the same with two guns....plus, I give it to DC for being Scrappy Doo, even with Dee Brown on the bench. Wiz have 12 fast break baskets to 5 for the Lake Show.....and are +5 in the rebound department. It's only 44-41 Lakers folks.
I'm going to put this out there....Vanessa is my favorite Wizards Dance Girl.
4:46: Nick Young hits a trey.....I attribute it to him wearing his headband slightly high on his head, fancy style. Steve Buckhantz related that the Wiz started 6-20 from the field and have since gone 11-16.
Does Nick Young have absolutely no left hand at all.....Kobe over-plays him to that side nutso.
2:24: We got our Young, Stevenson, Butler, Jamison, Thomas lineup in an DeShawn hits an open trey from the corner...one of the shots we're all okay with him taking.....53-49 Lakers. For some reason, I feel like the Wizards are not in the game, but they are.....crap, I've turned into a pessimist. Thanks a lot guys.
Nick Young is impressing me with his passing ability....especially considering the fact that he's going against his hometown Lakers (when I expect him to be gunning).
0:00: Yep, Caron is just not good at clock-running-down scoring opportunities.....he drives on Vlad, but has to throw up some lazy lefty BS that gets slapped away by Bynum as the clock expires....meanwhile, Butler stumbles out of bounds near the baseline and his head basically ends up in some white lady's crotch.
But hey, after the poor start, I'm thoroughly impressed by the Wizards, they are only down 58-53.
11:13: Butler gets caught behind a Fisher pick as he was looking to help Jamison on Gasol...his man, Vlad, gets open for a trey. 61-53 Lakers.
9:39: Butler great 2-man game drive and dish off to McGee for a pretty lay-in....I tell you, this McGee kid just develops and develops...yet to have any major slumps. Every mistake is compartmentalized and forgotten on subsequent go-hard attempts. 65-58 Lakers.
Andrew Bynum cries to the refs too much.....rumor has it that he's a huge LeBron James fan.
7:52: Blatche hits a trey after Stevenson almost bumbles it away. Why does Andray end up landing two feet in front of where he started on his jump shots?
7:44: Caron leaves Vlad alone in the corner and the Lakers answer with a trey within 8 seconds. 72-61 LA.
Buckhantz talks about a ref, Brian Forte, and cites that he was born in Fairfax, VA, and also says that he is the son of Joe Forte (a former NBA ref)...and then they show a white dude which totally throws me off because after hearing 'Joe Forte' all I could think of was the Dematha High grad turned Tar Heel turned complete NBA bust.
Clinton Portis and Jason Taylor are looking like teenage girls texting on the sidelines.
Another struggle of the 3rd quarter for the Wiz....Bynum gets third chance points and LA is up 80-63.
Damn....the Wiz are now down 20...Butler keeps getting himself out of position....either that or he just doesn't give a damn about Vlad who hits another trey from the corner. 85-65 Lakers.
He hasn't been completely on, but I really like what Blatche has brought to the game so far. He's letting the game come to him and he's not making many mistakes.
Speak of the devil...Butler gets a steal, Blatche gets a dunk and Steve Buck reports that Andray has 10 boards so far. Timeout, 85-68 Lakers.
OK --- It was at this point, watching the game on DVR delay, I accidentally saw a score of Lakers 105, Wizards 102 on another TV, but had no clue if it was a final score or not. I'd go on to torture myself as I would continue to watch the game....Kobe Bryant is all smiles and relaxed on the bench with his warm-up on....and with the Wizards continuing to shoot themselves in the foot....I was baffled as to how they would ever get within three points of LA. I began to assume that the score I saw was a final, but could not help but wonder if I was seeing things.
Daniels, McGuire, Butler, Songaila, and Thomas started the 4th.
10:12: Odom tries to wrassle with Etan, but can't....Bynum and The Machine just stand and watch as the Wiz get a 2nd, then 3rd chance, ending in a Butler put-back. 92-78 Lakers.
9:13: Butler makes Ariza look juvenile on a back-cut and dunk....but LITTLE THINGS.....he saunters back up court, paying no attention to a streaking Ariza who gets a lob for an easy lay-up. 97-80 Lakers.
8:57: Next time down the court, Butler is just not strong with the ball and lets Ariza tap it away from him and streak for a breakaway dunk. Butler seems to look for a foul, but he MUST do a better job at securing the ball. Lakers up 19....how the hell do the Wizards come back?
6:57: Jamison switches on Bynum after Blatche doubled the Machine off a ball screen. Blatche does his job in filling the lane and then looking for the open man to cover. AB goes to Walton, who is the closest man to the hoop and is being covered by Butler. But, you can clearly see Blatche communicate with Caron that he should pick up Ariza in the corner....who Walton is trying to set an off ball screen for, while Andray will stay with Walton. Ariza, thinking there is an opening, cuts to the hoop, but he is actually falling for Caron's bait as he is ready to pick up Ariza the whole time. Caron jumps in the passing lane, and gets a steal....Caron was also watching the eyes of Bynum which made it much easier. Good defensive communication guys.
6:39: Young gets in the lane, gets caught, but doesn't panic...he uses his pivot foot, Blatche fills the lane like he is supposed to and receives a pass from Nick for the dunk. 99-85 Lakers.
* I am really impressed with the passing of both Young and Blatche tonight.
The Laker offense looks lost with Farmar, Ariza, "Sasha", Bynum, and Walton on the court.
5:47: Jamison shoots and misses a three. There are four Lakers in the paint. Bynum doesn't put a body on Blatche, who is able to tap the ball away. Ariza is more interested in assuming a Laker board and looks to break down the court. "Sasha" is just content with watching. And Caron Butler, the only other Wizard in the paint, cannot possibly be blocked out by little Jordan Farmar. 2nd chance Wiz points, and all of a sudden, Washington is down 9 after a 10-0 run. 99-90 Lakers. Just like that, it's a game. Wow.
Phil Jackson calls a timeout and gets Kobe back on the court.
5:20: Kobe misses, but Nick Young also misses an assignment to block out Ariza. The Lakers would get a third AND fourth chance on this possession, but in the finale, Butler plays very tough D on Kobe and makes him throw up a fading brick right inside the FT line. Bryant has 18 points, but is 4-14 from the field.
4:19: The Lakers are worse than the Wizards at giving up 2nd chance points. Young misses a lay-up, but Jamison is able to roam free in the lane amongst Gasol, Odom and Bryant. He taps the board to Butler who nails the J. 99-92 Lakers.
4:02: Young goes to double Gasol with Blatche, but it's not necessary. Pau drives baseline, but is behind the basket, and not really in position to score with Andray still in front of him. Ariza, Young's man, cuts and receives the easy pass for the dunk. 101-92 Lakers.
3:42: Kobe pokes it away from Young and seems to have the inside track on getting the ball, but Nick, dives on the floor, slightly nudged by Farmar, who they call a foul on, and secures the ball. Now that's doing the little things Nick Young...great effort (even though you didn't secure the ball). 2 FTs and it's 101-94 LA.
2:57: Blatche is able to power baseline around a lumbering Gasol for a nice reverse hook. Man....I've called Haywood soft in the past, but he never had anything on Gasol. Pau has cotton innards. 103-96 Lakers.
Bench Points: Wizards 45, Lakers 23.
Caron is really hustling on Kobe, knocks the ball away, but this time Bryant dives on the floor and is able to get the ball to a teammate. Unfortunately, the Wizards commit a foul with 1 second on the shot clock for the 2nd straight Laker possession. Kobe made both FTs last time....this time, Odom misses both. 103-96 Lakers.
2:15: Ahhhhh!!!!!! Jamison gets caught in the air, jumping to pass on a drive against Gasol with Odom on his back. Butler begins to cut to the hoop, but AJ thinks he will be in the corner. Turnover out of bounds. Jumping to pass....yea, sometimes it's gotta be done, but that's what can happen when you do it.
The Wiz have held the Lakers to 1 FG in the last 6:45.
1:50: After a Bryant miss and down the court, Kobe allows Caron room to drive right. Ariza is there to pick him up, but Caron goes baseline around him. Odom steps up to stop Caron too, so there are three Lakers around Butler and they're all right under the basket. Gasol is just standing around in no-mans land and Blatche, again, does his job in filling the lane, making himself available for the pass and throws down a nice 2-hand dunk in Odom's grill. 103-98 Lakers. 18-4 Wizards run.
Gasol settles for a baseline jumper.....miss.....part of this run has just been LA's inability to make shots. Butler drives hard on the other end and gets fouled. 2 FTs and it's 103-100 Lakers.
Butler takes a wide stance and will not let Kobe drive....Kobe settles for the jumper and misses.
0:45: Caron drives to the right elbow, quick stop, subtle push to Ariza, nails a jumper. 103-102 Lakers. 26 points for Caron, 12 in the 4th.
0:24: Kobe Bryant being Kobe Bryant.....he loses the ball, somehow re-gathers and almost all in one motion, jumps, turns around blindly to the basket, and hits a tough shot off the glass. That'll suck the wind out of you. 105-102 Lakers.
But now, I have new life as the score I previously saw on accident was not a final. Here we go....
Frustration....evidently, Wes Unseld Jr. "worked up" an out of bounds play out the timeout. This play involves: Butler taking it out of bounds, the rest of the Wizards are on the four corners of the lane. AD close block, Young far block. Jamison close elbow, Blatche far elbow. Butler gets the ball and Jamison sets a down screen for AD and then clears out to the other side while Young is cutting to the close corner. Farmar covers AD tight, Kobe covers Young tight, and Andray Blatche....does absolutely nothing. He barely makes a move to get separation from Gasol to receive the ball if he has to. No one is available to receive the pass and the Wizards must call a timeout, their last.
Bad play from Unseld, bad execution....it looks like Caron tells Jamison "it was you" as in AJ was supposed to come back to the ball, but I couldn't exactly tell...he may have been talking to Blatche.
0:14: Butler drives in the paint, and once again, the Lakers (Gasol) focus on him a ton....Blatche is on the block to receive the pass, misses the first shot, but has the awareness to follow tip his own miss. 105-104 Lakers.
Butler immediately fouls Kobe, 12-12 from the FT line on the night....but goes 1-2 here.
Wiz ball, no timeouts, Butler with the rock in his hands. This is obviously a one-on-one situation....Butler fakes, Ariza flies by, but Farmer comes over to contest and Butler misses the three. Game over. Lakers 106-104
I do not mind Caron Butler going for the win on a three-point attempt.... I DO have a problem with Butler not leaving any time on the clock for the Wizards to crash the offensive boards for a possible put-back to tie the game.
The Little Things.