After the Lakers watched the Cavaliers destroy the Pistons, I know that they wanted to come out and make a statement against the Jazz. Statement made. The Lakers came out with a balanced attack and went on to beat the Jazz. Derek Fisher picked up two early fouls and Shannon (no Van Gundy, not Chris Brown) Brown came in and played mostly mistake free ball. Between Brown (9 pts, 3 asts, 2 rebs, and 1 stl) and Trevor Ariza (21 pts, 4 rebs, 2 asts) all of the x-factors came through for the Lakers. Kobe had 24pts, and Gasol had 20 pts and 9 rebs (before fouling out) and the game never really seemed to be in reach for the Jazz after halftime. They got the lead down to 9 but never really threatened from there.
The Jazz came out and played horriawful. No, that's not really a word but it explains how they played. Boozer (27 pts, 9 rebs, 2 stls, 2 asts) and Williams (16 pts, 17 asts, 3 rebs) both had great stat lines, but that was it. The Jazz were down, made a run but couldn't get over the top. The second half of this game got a lot more physical than the first which is in the Jazz's favor. I don't know what they can do win this series, other than make it a slugfest.
- Kobe really let his team play and put up numbers and didn't force anything. When the Lakers are playing like this, it's dangerous.
- I loved Matt Harpring at Georgia Tech, but it seems as though his game is really just more of a hackman (I know that's harsh) with a jumper. Yes, he plays hard and you like to see that, but I expected more out of this guy.
Do the Jazz have a chance? Is this series going to become more of a fight than a basketball series from here on out?