It still gives me chills looking at that picture and just thinking how less than 24 hours ago I was part of that scene at Staples Center. The crowd was so hyped up the only screams that compare to that one were obviously the Horry shot. Yesterday was a game the Lakers had no business winning. There weren't very many things the team did well but somehow pulled it out. It shows how much this team has improved and will continue to do so in the future as the young guys are all learning the triangle and having success doing it.
From the Suns point of view this had to be a demoralizing loss as they had this game won twice and couldn't hold on. I never could have imagined that Nash would have the ball and lose it twice in the closing seconds. The Suns did do a very good job on defense with their rotations after doubling Kobe. Whenever he got the ball a second man would come but when Kobe tried to pass cross court on 2-3 consecutive possessions the Suns were there with the rotation and the steal. They also did a great job offensively making the Lakers switch on the defensive end so they could have mismatches such as when Boris Diaw would post up Smush or Sasha. The Lakers PG's whether its Sasha or Smush need to do a better job on Nash as he is getting to the basket too easily and gets easy layups, why the Suns don't continue to do that doesn't make sense to me.
The amazing thing though is the Lakers defense of the Suns as they are holding the leading offensive team in all categories in the NBA under 100 points each time out the past 3 games. Partially due to the offensive gameplan where they are running down the shot clock, but it backfired a lot yesterday as there were multiple possessions where the Lakers had to throw up a terrible shot just as the clock was expiring. They must do a better job of finding shots on offense. Defensively yesterday the rebounding was atrocious. Yes I understand that Phoenix will get a few extra offensive rebounds because they are a perimeter oriented team and those shots become long rebounds but still it seems like time and time again Phoenix was getting 2nd and even 3rd shot opportunities.
In other news, when it rains it pours over at the University of South Central as Dwyane Jarrett may have been in violation of NCAA rules with his apartment he shared with Matt Leinart. We'll see what comes out of this but I doubt much since the NCAA really has no power to do anything unless the courts get involved which they will be in the Reggie Bush situation. I had heard of a lot of shady stuff going on at USC and maybe this is just the beginning, I can only hope. The Wizard of Odds has more on the Jarrett story here and here. I know I said I'd have a draft recap but the Lakers have taken over for now, I should have something up sometime this week. Finally Congratulations go out to Kobe Bryant again, this time for the birth of his second daughter, considering how much fun we're having celebrating this day it must be that much more special for him.