Home > Uncategorized > It Took A While for Lakers to Gain a Victory on The Road, But it was Painful

It Took A While for Lakers to Gain a Victory on The Road, But it was Painful

The Los Angeles Lakers are most definitely playing with their backs up against the wall looking to find some way to make a push for the playoffs just to get in, but finding a way to win hasn’t been an easy path: It took until February for them to add a road victory to the equation in 2013! After 7 losses on the road, they started this “Grammy’s Road Trip” well on Wednesday night – for 3 quarters; but losing Dwight Howard to further injury of his labrum-damaged shoulder was enough for The Phoenix Suns to rally in the 4th Quarter to win that game. But Friday night in a chilly Minnesota climate, The Lakers started off red hot! They looked like they were going to score 37 points per quarter! Until I tweeted such…

Me & my big mouth: jinxed ’em – ‘er, me & my stupid bird chirps???? Yeah, whatever. Twitter actually told me I had exceeded an allowed number of tweets after the 3rd Quarter! Who knew? I switched to an alternate account through the rest of the game and kept tweeting away! Adapt & overcome! That’s what The Lakers did, in Minnesota. My only questions are: Do The Minnesota Timberwolves still have any interest in trading for Pau Gasol? Based on last night, probably. And, I thought Ricky Rubio was some super-special, ultimate Point Guard?

The best Point Guards on the court last night were: Nash, Bryant & Barrea! (in that order)

The Los Angeles Lakers won a game in the road!

Final Score: Lakers 111, Timberwolves 100 (Recap). If you check the box score, the stats show a very balanced attack by the entire team getting involved in the victory. But while I have challenged friends in years past to not tell me about the game until I would first read the box score and then surmise how it unfolded, you had to watch this game to get the full impact of what really happened:

The Lakers could not find an answer to Rick Adelman’s adjustments out of halftime to handle their zone defense.

The Lakers had already gone cold with their perimeter shooting to end the 2nd Quarter, tailing off from a 37-24 lead at the 1st Quarter mark which they then had grown to a 29-point advantage early in the 2nd Quarter! The bench flooded onto the court and defense stopped as each team traded baskets for a while, but suddenly the unbelievable shooting percentage deteriorated.

The Lakers did play significant, adequate defense most of the night – except for that 2nd Quarter surge when The Timberwolves played themselves back into the contest. Minnesota then went to a zone defense that confused The Lakers in every sense of the word to start the 2nd Half, lost the 3rd Quarter but not the lead – and, Jamison came to the rescue!

Nash: 17-7-7 seemed to start the night as our Point Guard, and I wondered what the night would hold for Kobe Bryant: The Black Mamba became “Kobe The Rebounder”! Kobe’s line: 17-12-8. Pau: 22-12-3. MWP: 6-7-4, only 2-11/FGs, 1-6/3P, but with the highest +/- rating. Clark: 13-10. But it was truly only Jamison in the paint, who could catch & spin to the hoop that gave The Lakers any ability to break down the zone defense by Minnesota that had everybody else standing around like they were wearing cement boots! Jamison: 18-7.

The Lakers were hot from the start (well, after Pau missed 2 shots), then ended the game 7-42: their rhythm was disturbed, but they never lost heart. Nash took over some of the passing duties, Kobe concentrated on rebounding, and Jamison broke down the zone; plus, Pau played feisty, MWP played tough defensively, Clark played steady, Steve Blake contributed well, and D’Antoni didn’t screw things up by letting anybody else except Jodie Meeks on the floor! How a team can blow a 29-point lead and still win on the road is tough to explain…

Who knew that The Lakers would play well enough to win despite the absence of Dwight Howard?

Granted, Minnesota played without the availability of Kevin Love but they still have decent players: Kirilenko & Rubio, however, they were throttled really well by our defense. Silenced? No. Well, Kirilenko had ZERO rebounds. But J.J. Barrea came into the game and gave us some trouble with his speed, and Williams and Pekovic weren’t completely worthless with 9 rebounds each. All of their shots came with some degree of difficulty, however – unless it was due to breakaway layups off of Lakers turnovers (which were few, this game).

Hopefully the procedure is going well for Dwight Howard this morning to give some stability & confidence back to him with his ailing shoulder. Whether this was a fluke to win without him or not remains to be seen, but I am sure that the team, management, and most of “we the fans” want to see him back on the court – soon! Our prayers are with you, Dwight!

In the absence of Dwight Howard, though, our overall team FT% was 83: that’s probably a season-high!

A win is a win, so they say; but, a winning streak is what everybody associated with The Lakers is most interested in seeing come to fruition. Hopefully cracking a zone defense last night will help our beloved Lakers do it again against the next team that tries to use that tactic against us. The Lakers beat it out of frigid Minneapolis/St.Paul quickly, not choosing to stay the night; hopefully they will be practicing how to overcome a zone defense in a scrimmage against themselves today in Detroit in preparation for the game against The Pistons tomorrow.

Go, Lakers!

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