Lakers Hold Off Nuggets To Start 3-0
Posted by hiphopmama on November 2, 2008
LA Lakers 104, Denver 97
I’m dying. Now that I’m finally getting back into basketball seriously, I’m no longer in southern California and I can only watch the nationally televised Lakers games. Not that that’s too shabby, since they’re a top-tier (and big market) team, but dammit I want them all! ESPN’s little play-by-play thing is cool, but I couldn’t find any p2p results for it. Does that shit exist for NBA games?
The game itself was a good one, with the Lakers coming out of the gates quickly yet having to fight a tough battle against the road-weary Nuggets during the middle portion of the game. Carmelo Anthony looked miserable, coming back after a two-game suspension, and was almost held to single digits for the first time since 2005. He eventually knocked down a couple buckets in the fourth quarter to help Denver make a run, but his late airball and Kobe’s shot at the other end got things back under control and spelled the end for the Nuggets. Kobe had his highest point title of the young season, scoring 33 points in 33 minutes – how’s that for productivity? He was 11-24 from the field and 10-12 from the free throw line with 4 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steals, and 1 turnover. Lakers top scorers:
- Kobe Bryant: 33 pts, 11-24
- Pau Gasol: 16 pts, 7-15
- Derek Fisher: 11 pts, 4-10
- Vladimir Radmanovic: 11 pts, 2-7
- Lamar Odom: 10 pts, 3-9
I didn’t get to watch the game, so I can only surmise from the Nuggets’ 45.9% shooting percentage that the defense wasn’t quite up to the same standard as in the first two games. On the other hand, they appear to have clamped down on Anthony pretty well, which is no mean feat, although by his account “rust” had plenty to do with it as well.
Phil played a hefty rotation again, using 11 of 12 guys this time, and 10 of them got in the scoring column. Poor Luke Walton appears to have fallen out of favor for reasons I cannot understand. He played 2 minutes and was the only one to get minutes and not score.
Elsewhere, San Antonio has started the season 0-2, losing close games to Phoenix and Portland. After all those years of nail-biting playoff match-ups with the Lakers, I still can’t root for them. But they’re a lot harder to hate now, all old and toothless. I know they’ve got that streak of winning every other Championship, but it’s hard to believe that will continue this year. They’ll definitely be in the mix, because they have Tim Duncan and the same coach core of players around him, but it seems like a longshot that they’ll make it through the regular season and post-season without any serious injury or fatigue setbacks. Maybe fourth seed, behind LA, New Orleans, and Houston? (The Hornets and Rockets are also 3-0, as are the Raptors.)