The Los Angeles Lakers are in the midst of a two-game winning streak, punctuated with a 99-82 shellacking of Carmelo Anthony and Amar’e Stoudemire led New York Knicks team. Los Angeles is now 2-2 on the season, rebounding from two disappointing defeats at the hands of the Chicago Bulls and Sacramento Kings. Both of those contests ended in disappointment largely because of the Lakers’ inability to close games in the fourth quarter, with Derrick Rose making a game winner over Pau Gasol and the Kings making a furious run and never looking back.
Los Angeles began the game in excellent fashion, shooting upwards of 70% from the field in the first half, which led to a solid 12-point halftime advantage. Even more impressive was that everyone seemed to come together in their particular roles, including Metta World Peace, newly acquired center Josh McRoberts, and even oft-struggling point guard Steve Blake, who nailed a plethora of crucial three pointers throughout the contest. In addition, Kobe Bryant, who by his own admission called the ligament tear in his wrist painful, scored 28 points in his most efficient shooting performance of the short season.
Then came the fourth quarter, when the Lakers Achilles heel affected themselves, before Steve Blake nailed a few of his aforementioned long balls to seal the feisty Knicks’ squad’s chances.
Everything seemed to come together at the correct time as starting center Andrew Bynum is set to make his season debut Saturday against the Nuggets after a four-game suspension for closelining Mavericks floor general J.J. Barea in the playoffs last season. Now with the Lakers playing the best game they have all season, the missing cog will join the well-oiled machine.
Despite all the adversity hitting the Lakers franchise before the season, including the Lakers being denied Chris Paul by NBA commissioner David Stern, only to see him eventually get shipped to the rival Clippers, which led to reigning NBA Sixth Man of The Year Lamar Odom requesting a trade, a request which was granted when he became the newest member of the defending champion Dallas Mavericks, the Lakers have a bright future ahead of them and could become the third to fifth seed in Lakerland.
Believe me Lakers fans, now is the time to celebrate the Lakers recent success, not push the panic button.