Still On Track For Seven
Posted by hiphopmama on May 25, 2009
LA Lakers 101, Denver 120
Series tied 2-2
Another predictable, if still disappointing, result. We were all hoping game 3 would be a sign of things to come, but the pragmatists (and historians) among us must have secretly known it was too tall an order. How many times have we written the storyline that supposedly ends with the Lakers turning a corner, only to watch it disintegrate in a crushing away loss? We only have to go back one series to witness this exact same scenario playing out, so it’s not surprising to see the same thing happening again. Doesn’t make it suck any less, though.
It was just a struggle all night for the team. In the first half, they were getting after it, but they just weren’t hitting their shots. Denver played like a proper home team and made a more concerted effort to take it to the rim and control the game that way. It also helped the Nuggets that they hit a fair few shots in this game, something they were completely unable to do in game 3. Melo had a bad game, suffering through some ailment or other, but the rest of the team showed up and played to its full potential. Billups was a true floor general; Martin and Nene attacked the glass with force; and JR Smith finally emerged from his hibernation to score 24 points and energize his team. It was the kind of performance I expected to see from them in game 3, when I was quasi-predicting a Denver win. It came one game late but was still plenty powerful.
It wouldn’t be particularly disheartening if we seemed capable of getting this kind of a result on our own home floor, but we have given no indication of being able to take a game over even at Staples. If there was ever a time for it, it was now, as the team could use it to galvanize itself and hopefully propel themselves forward just enough to take the series, even if it requires seven games (and really, who isn’t counting on that anyway?). We all just have to come to grips with the fact that there is no corner to be turned, no lesson to be learned, and that this Lakers team is who it is at this point. It hurts to admit it, but it’s true that our team has a weak, or at the very least variable, mental fortitude that is entirely undependable and liable to completely disappear on any given night. They can dig deep for a win some days, but on others it is outside the realm of possibility. Tonight was one of those nights, so we lost, and by a lot. I just keep repeating the mantra other Laker fans have espoused: you don’t necessarily have to be good to win it all, just good enough. In the end, we may still be good enough. But only just.