Coming into a meaningful matchup with OKC, the Lakers were 1-9 against the top four seeds in the West, and 1-10 on the road against the top eight in the West. Maybe they saw a performance like last night coming? They looked rattled and nervous, like a bunch of freshmen making their first start in a JV game. The Lakers fell behind 10-1 before Kendrick Perkins even had a chance to scowl. Serge Ibaka was playing volleyball at the rim on defense, and L.A. was busy overworking the front of the rim. Kobe Bryant (30 points) left quickly after suffering an ulnar nerve contusion in the first quarter, but came back just in time to watch Russell Westbrook (37 points, 10 rebounds) chew up and spit out L.A.’s batch of overmatched point guards. Westbrook had an animalistic rage going on in the first half, and it was so overpowering that it somehow affected Steve Nash‘s game. We know it’s not P.C. to criticize Nash, but he couldn’t make a shot nor was he offering any resistance on the other end. After a five-point spurt from Kevin Durant (26 points, nine boards) to go into the break, OKC had put up their highest-scoring first quarter and highest-scoring first half of the season … While Nash (20 points) eventually discovered his legs somewhere in the locker room, and led a third quarter charge that shrunk an 18-point deficit to just 97-89 to start the fourth, what the hell was up with Dwight Howard? He finished with 16 rebounds but most of them were ones that fell into his lap. He also made one shot all night. One. Look for him to make a celebrity appearance on the next missing person episode of Law & Order. In the end, OKC tied a NBA record with only two turnovers, and the Lakers couldn’t make any shots during the final five minutes, losing 122-105 … Westbrook put a flurry of moves on Kobe during one third quarter possession that would’ve turned a regular person’s leg ligaments into Play-doh. Isolated at the top of the key, he drove right, pulled it back through his legs and then hit Bryant with a hesitation. In the blink of an eye he was drawing a foul at the rim, and Kobe was flat-footed 15 feet from the hoop … Derek Fisher scored 10 against his old pals, his first points with the Thunder … Despite 32 off the pine from Marcus Thornton, Denver finished off the Kings, 120-113. Ty Lawson led the way with 24, and Kenneth Faried mashed up Sacramento’s frontline for 19 and 12. That’s six wins in a row for the Nuggets … And apparently, even before Carmelo Anthony left New York’s game in Cleveland on Monday night, he had asked Mike Woodson to take him out. The dude has a sore knee that the coach called “alarming,” and it’s shaping up to be terrible timing. New York goes to Denver next Wednesday. Anthony better be ready to play. Outside of Pacquiao/Mayweather, there’s nothing we’d rather see … Keep reading to hear what Paul Pierce compared his new injury to…
Smack / Mar 6, 2013 / 12:53 am
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