Posted on: May 21, 2008 4:28 pm
 

Preview Of The Future?: Lakers R2 Analysis

TheLakers v Jazz series turned out to be a lot closer then many expected. I predicted the Lakers to win in 6 games pre playoffs and I stuck to it even after the first round sweep. However I did not think it would be as stressful and as hard as it actually was. Which leads me to believe this clearly was a preview of the future. So here it is my analysis of the Lakers round 2 series with the Jazz and also a look ahead to the Western Conference Finals.

Game 1- The Lakers came out and squashed any questions about rust right away. It was really maybe the best game played by the Lakers all series outside of game 6. The Jazz made a run but the Lakers took care of business and one fairly comfortably when it was all said and done.

Game 2- Kind of a carbon copy of game 1 except for the fact that the Jazz kept it a lot closer. However in the end Kobe Bryant used the momentum of getting his MVP to provide a night to remember for Lakers fans as we took a 2-0 lead.

Game 3- I didn't watch much of the first 3 quarters and still haven't gone back to watch them however it appears the Lakers played pretty sloppy and just not there best ball yet they nearly pulled it out. Carlos Boozer had his shinning moment of the series when he hit 3 killer shots in a row after the Lakers had cut the lead to 3.

Game 4- Again didn't see much of the first 3 quarters due to the Holiday. It was the Derek Fisher and Lamar Odom show in the 4th quarter though bringing us back from a 12 point deficit with 3 and a half to play to get it into overtime. Then in OT the Lakers got dumb and decided to have bad back Kobe take all the shots. I just didn't get their plan in the OT it appeared they where hoping the Jazz would just wilt. But thanks to Andrei Kirilenko who came up big blocking Kobe a few times and had a big game clinching 3 point play. In the end it could of been an instant classic for Laker fans but now that we won the series I think I can still consider it a classic.

Game 5- This was the story of just a hard fought game. The Lakers lead the entire way basically as the Jazz missed ample opportunities to take the lead. It was amazing they could cut into any kind of lead the Lakers made for themselves but once they got down to where 1 shot could give them the lead they just couldn't do it. TheLakers get a huge game from Pau Gasol and it helps propel them to the must win game 5 on there home court. Big props to Jordan Farmar to for hitting a few big shots in what was probably his one shinning moment of the series that big 3 point play.

Game 6- The Lakers utterly dominated the first 3 quarters and it looked like it was going to be a cake walk all the way. However the Jazz made a run and got it close. Then Kobe Bryant went for 6 points in a row that I thought had sealed the game putting the Lakers back up by 11 with Carlos Boozer fouling out. However the Jazz showed just why this series was never easy as they hit an insane five 3 pointers in a row capped by Andrei Kirilenko who hadn't made any all series nailing the last two. It became a nail bitter and the Jazz had two chances to tie it in the final seconds but they finally missed there 3's. As the Lakers held on for the 3 point win.

The Jazz really showed me just how great they are they have a great core of young players headlined by Derron Williams. I always knew Derron Williams was good I remember having to see my Badgers play him in College when he was at Illinois. However I think he is even better then I expected. If they can hang on to this great core I think we can see the next budding rivalry in the NBA. The Jazz and the Lakers may very well be battling it out for Western Conference glory in years to come. I think I can see the next big 3 in the West Lakers, Jazz, Hornets while the older big 3 is on there way out the Spurs, Suns, and Mavericks.

The Star Of The Series

It would be easy to just say Kobe Bryant but I think the unsung hero of this Laker squad is without a doubt Lamar Odom and that is why he is the star of this series. He came up so big for us on so many occasions. I would give a close second to Derek Fisher.


Key Matchup

Derek Fisher and Jordan Farmar defense on containing Derron Williams. I felt this was the key matchup of the series going into it and it proved to be. Derek Fisher did a solid job of at least slowing down Derron Williams and at least holding him in check. He didn't stop D Will but he did a nice job when he was not in foul trouble of at least limiting the damage.

Areas Of Improvement

The bench play needs to improve I felt our bench was lacking in this series again. Sasha Vujacic came up big for us in a few games but especially in game 4 the bench was outplayed by the Jazz's bench. This points at Jordan Farmar to who has not been very good in this post season. But he is youthful so we should cut him some slack.

Well it is pretty obvious we got killed on the boards however it did not hurt us in the end. So I must say this always has room for improvement.

Defense was pretty good but it was not great. I feel the Lakers have just been playing good enough defense to just get by now it is time for it to really to step up.


Preview of Western Conference Finals

Well the Spurs it is a rebirth of a classic rivalry from earlier in this decade. I think the theme of this series in the end will be out with the old in with the new. As the Spurs may be passing along that dynasty torch. The key to this series for the Lakers is the defense on Tony Parker and Tim Duncan. They both are going to get there's you know it's going to happen so maybe it will be about stopping the other Spurs. I'm just not too sure but without a doubt the one advantage the Spurs have on us is Tony Parker against Derek Fisher. It will be up to Fish to do what he did to Derron Williams and that is to limit the damage. We also get Trevor Ariza back which could prove to be of big help on defense.

In the end I say the Lakers win a classic 6 game series. Pre playoffs this is the series I had envisioned and it has happened. I said it would go 7 but I think the Lakers youth, talent, and speed will prevail. I think the Spurs older legs will have an effect especially in game 1 which I see as the only game that could be a potential blow out.

I'm predicting a Lakers 99-88 game one win, Lakers take game 2 by 5, Spurs take game 3 by 6, Spurs take game 4 by 3 as Kobe misses a tying 3 at the buzzer, The Lakers come home and play a classic with the Spurs in game 5 as they find a way to pull it out late for a 104-99 win. Then in game 6 theLakers make a big come back in the second half to win and advance to the finals with a 97-91 victory. Should be a lot of fun and as always best of luck to the Spurs and Go Lakers!!!!!!! The rebirth of a classic rivalry as the torch is passed!!!!!!!

 

Posted on: April 29, 2008 8:36 pm
 

Sweep Dreams: First Round Laker Analysis

Well here we are 4 game sweep of the Nuggets. The only sweep in the first round of the playoffs this season and when you consider we are in the Western Conference that makes it even more impressive!!!!! So let's analyze this series.

Game 1 was all about Gasol as he came through big for the Lakers with a thrilling 36 points, 8 ast, 16 rebound affair. Kobe woke up later in the game and the Lakers put on an offensive clinic in the game. It was the worst defensive game of the series though.

Game 2 was the Kobe Bryant show as he had one of his all time career best playoff games!!!! The Lakers protected there home court and moved on to Denver with a ton of confidence.

Game 3 the Lakers looked like the team that was down 2-0 not the Nuggets. As they came out and pretty much dominated the Nuggets. This was the best game defensively!!!! As the Lakers used a dominate third quarter to all but put the Nuggets away before the 4th when we saw them basically quit.

Game 4 featured a solid first half and a struggle in the second half. We let the Nuggets back in the game and it was a close game throughout the second half. However Kobe Bryant came through proving once again why he is the best closer in the game and the MVP of this league very soon!!!! Luke Walton with a huge dagger like 3 towards the end too. At first I thought what a terrible second half but you know what I think it was just what the Lakers needed a little scare!!!!

The Lakers pretty much dominated the series as there offense just couldn't be stopped by the Nuggets. The 15 point third quarter in game 4 I think had more to do with the Lakers stopping themselves rather then the Nuggets stopping us. It was fun to see this because I honestly expected this despite what the experts where saying. I really ain't surprised by this result at all I predicted Lakers to win in 5 but really wanted to just say sweep but I figured Lakers might get careless in a half against the Nuggets which it seemed like they did for part of that 3rd quarter in game 4. Now we get at least a few days rest maybe more.

Something you may not know

The Nuggets where the first and only 50 win team in history of the NBA to be swept in the first round of the playoffs that is pretty darn impressive when you consider this season and the stacked Western Conference!!!!

Surprise of the series

Luke Walton he really stepped up big time for us averaging 14pts, nearly 4 ast, and 5 rebounds in the series!!!!! Hope he keeps it up for us he could continue to be a great fourth wheel to Kobe, Gasol, & Odom!!!

Area's for improvement

1- Free Throw shooting this basically became a slight problem up in Denver which has me slightly concerned. We seemed to miss a lot of free throw's in Denver. Most of these misses came from some of our key guys to so that is why I suspect this won't ultimately be a problem.

2- Defense- I think we can continue to grow and work on our defense. It was not stellar in this series it was basically good enough to get the job done. I suspect the Lakers did kind of relax during parts of this series just because the offense was so dominant!!!! Only time will tell!!!!

3- More Bench Mob- I would like to see more from the bench besides Walton really there wasn't any standout's pursay. I would like to see more from Farmar, Sasha, Turiaf (I know he was sick), etc. I felt like the starters had to carry us for the most part maybe I'm way off not sure.

4- Just get healthy- Just get some rest and get healthy I think this is the biggest key right now!!!!!

Preview of what's to come

Well it looks like we will be playing the Jazz hopefully the Rockets beat them tonight then lose in Utah on Friday I wouldn't really mind this because then I assume the second round series will start on Sunday on ABC. Plus I just think over a week off could be a bad thing for the Lakers 6 days is perfect.

If it is the Jazz I think the biggest key is holding Derron Williams in check. I suspect Fisher, and Farmar are up the challenge. And then it will be all about our front court against there's. And the other key is to protect our homecourt I'm pretty sure we can and will win at least one in Utah but let's make sure we don't even have to. I will stick with my original prediction check out my previous blog entry for it but Lakers in 6.

If the Rockets make it well let's just say this can you say Lakers domination!!!!! I can not see them winning more then 2 games after a grueling 7 game series!!!!!
Category: NBA
Posted on: April 19, 2008 12:26 pm
 

NBA Playoffs Predictions

Well here we are the NBA Playoffs have begun and it is time for some fun!!!!! It is time for me to rack my brain and figure out just exactly what is going to happen in the NBA Playoffs this year!!!!!! Let's start in the Leastern conference!!!!

Eastern Conference 1st round

Celtics sweep the Hawks I just smell as sweep on this one!!!! The Hawks have had a decent year but this is the C's we are talking about. A team who I saw in person on my trip to Atlanta just a week ago defeat the Hawks team without even playing KG, and some others in the fourth. I hope for the Hawks sake they can pull out one win in there home.

Cavs defeat Wizards in 7 I sure hope it is the other way around but my guess is LBJ and co. find a way to get it done against the Wiz again.

Magic defeat Raptors in 5 this could be a great series and it also could be an easy one of the Magic. My guess is Magic win it quickly but it will have close games with a nice battle between Bosh and Howard!!!

Pistons defeat Sixers in 6 this one could be a fun one as well. I think the Sixers have enough firepower to win a few games at least and make it interesting. Can they win the series I doubt it Pistons are just two much!!!!

Eastern Conference 2nd round

Celtics defeat Cavs in 5 can't see this one lasting long not after LBJ and co. come off a 7 game battle with the Wizards. I think the Celtics dismantle them quickly.

Pistons defeat Magic in 6 I think Dwight Howard causes enough problems to make this one very interesting. Detriot and the C's have been the best two teams in the East all year though and I suspect that holds true in the playoffs.

Eastern Conference Finals

Celtics defeat Pistons in 6 while I think the Pistons have a great shot I just think the Celtics have too much for them eventually. Celtics have been the team to beat basically since day one I suspect that continues.

Western Conference 1st round

Lakers defeat Nuggets in 5 The Lakers should dismantle the Nuggets and this series really should not be much of a problem. I figure the Lakers after getting up 2-0 or 3-0 may just lay a slight egg in one game but they will not allow it to go past 5 games closing the door in Staples in game 5.

Jazz defeat Rockets in 6 the Rockets will not be able to win in Utah I think Utah split's the first two in Houston takes a 3-1 lead back to Houston. Houston pulls out a great win in game 5 only to be sent packing in dominating fashion in game 6 in Utah.

Spurs defeat Suns in 7 this series could be a classic. Seems every media outlet wants to hop on the Suns bandwagon and bash the Spurs. Not a good idea I think the Spurs are motivated as hell now and find a way to win this series. It won't be easy but I think home court advantage in game 7 going to the Spurs wins it for them.

Mavs defeat Hornets in 6 I think this one has the makings of a special series to. I just feel the Mavs are hot right now and I think the Hornets great season comes to an end. As the Mavs bury some of there demons with a big opening series win.

Western Conference 2nd round

Lakers defeat Jazz in 6 I think the Lakers are one of the few teams that can actually win in Utah. I think the Lakers will take care of business at home and beat the Jazz in game 6 on there floor to seal the deal.

Spurs defeat Mavs in 6 this one could be another classic as these two rivals meet each other. I just think the Spurs have enough left in the tank for this one deep run. I think the Spurs want to prove all these doubters wrong to.

Western Conference Finals

Lakers defeat Spurs in 6 this one could have classic written all over it as well. However I think the Spurs might finally show there age by this time and the wear and tear of the all the game they played to get to this point. I think the Lakers are just two much for them to handle if we are clicking on all cylinders!!! Lakers win the Western Conf on the Spurs floor in game 6.

NBA Finals

Lakers defeat Celtics in 7 this is the one I think everyone wants to see unless you have a ventured interest in another team in the playoffs. This one just has classic written all over it. I know the C's have taken down the Lakers twice this year in big fashion but you know what that was earlier in the year and before we had Gasol. Plus we might have Bynum back by the Finals so who knows. I think it is a classic back and forth series. However I think the Lakers bench is the the X Factor that ends up beating Boston in game 7. Kobe Bryant hits some huge shot's down the stretch including the possible game winner in game 7.
Category: NBA
Posted on: March 31, 2008 1:53 am
 

2008 MLB Predictions!!!

Well here we are a milestone year for my Cubbies it is the 100 year anniversary of our last title. Glad I have not been alive for many of them. But anyways I have this eerie feeling the Cubbies might just break this supposed curse and the championship streak on the 100 year anniversary season just seems too good of a story not to happen. Well anyways here are my predictions on how the MLB season will take shape!!!! I will start in the American League.

American League

AL East

1- Boston Red Soxs- Just too good top to bottom they have the confidence of winning the World Series. This team will be rock solid all year but it will be quite the battle with the Yankees.

2- New York Yankees- Joe Giradi will do great in his first year I think Giradi is the best thing since sliced bread. I wanted the Cubs to get this guy as manager but as it turns out we went with Lou instead not a bad decision either. Anyways the Yankees will battle Boston but in the end

3- Toronto Bluejays- They have two former Red Birds playing for them this season. If Rolen can stay healthy he may just do well there. However to think they are going to top Boston or New York is crazy. They will stay in the hunt until September but the Red Sox's and the Yankees are just too good and too well managed to finish behind this bunch.

4- Tampa Bay Rays- They are what they are usually annual celler dwellers well not anymore they are now annual close to celler dwellers. This team is better then the team that will finish last in this division.

5- Baltimore Orioles- Another losing season for the Orioles could they lose a 100 games? Stupid move hanging on to Roberts but that's Andy McPhail for you. I think they will be forced to pratically give him away come trade deadline time.

AL Central

1- Cleveland Indians- As long as the contract situation doesn't get to CC's head I think this team is still the class of this division. They have a solid offense and two stud legit pitchers heading that rotation in CC and Fausto.

2- Detriot Tigers- They and the Indians will be the only two competiting for the division this season. I think the Tigers certainly have all the tools to beat out the Indians. However the jury is still out on the D Train can his career be revived in Detriot. Miguel Cabrera is really going to help them a lot though. I say they are in a dog fight for this division as well as the wild card.

3- Chicago White Sux's- Only here because the two teams below them are not going to do any better. I do not think the White Sox's are better if at all another 80+ loss season may just be in the cards especially if the top two teams in this division can eat them up.

4- Minnesota Twins- I really have no clue what will happen with the Twins now that Johan and Torri are gone. They always seems to surprise me though but I don't see any suprising going on this season.

5- Kansas City Royals- Well at least I can say I like there stadium. I really love that whole waterfall thing they have out in centerfield it is pretty stinkin cool!!!

AL West

1- Seattle Mariners- This team is going to have some very nice pitching and the addition of Bedard only boosts that even more. The question will be there offense I think they will do enough though to win the division.

2- LA Angles- I think the injuries right now are what is going to cost them later on. They will put up a fight for this division but I think they fall short.

3- Texas- Don't really know anything about this team other then they should not challenge for the division crown much past August.

4- Oakland- Again really know nothing about them expect about the same as Texas

AL Playoffs

Cleveland Indians def New York Yankees in 5 games. Same opening round series as last season and I think it brings about same results. Great job by Joe Giradi though as he guides the Yankees to the wild card.

Boston Red Sox's def Seattle in 4 games. Well it was a nice season for the Mariners but they will be getting the Red Sox's unforunately for them.

Cleveland Indians def Boston Red Sox's in 6. This time the Indians do not grab a 3-1 lead but after Boston ties up the series at 2 a piece Cleveland sweeps two in a row to get some revenge and claim the AL pennant.

National League

National League East

1- New York Mets- Want to pick the Phillies here but I'm a big Johan fan and I think he will be the difference here along with the Mets better starting pitching.

2- Phildelphia Phillies- Great offense no doubt but I question the pitching still. They will be in an all out war with the Mets once again.

3- Atlanta Braves- Playing third fiddle again to the Mets and Phillies. I can see Atlanta finishing as high as second and as low as third it all really comes down to whether the Mets continue to play like they did at the end of the last season.

4- Washinton Nationals- The Nationals will be interesting to watch at least but to think they could topple any of the top 3 now that would be a big stretch!!!

5- Florida Marlins- Have they run out of fire sale luck after lucking out from the first fire sale. They will probably continue to give my Cubbies fits though unforunately. I wish they would lose a 100+ games!!!!

National League Central

1- Chicago Cubs- The Cubs will win the division I think we will stay realtively healthy this year. I look for a huge year out of Big Z possibly Cy Young winner. Kosuke Fukudome will be a major addition and should win the ROY. The Cubs are just a solid team all around and I think a better start to the season coupled with kicking the inconsistent play hopefully will equal winning this division by 5 or more games.

2- Milwaukee Brewers- Sorry Brewers fans I think you guys will keep it interesting but Ned Yost once again will be your demise. The Cubs have a major advantage in the managerial position. You won't be able to rely on having a big lead early this year too I think so it will be up to the Brewers to show they can not only do well in the first half but the second half too.

3- Cinci Reds- Will push the Brewers hard for second. Dusty always seems to do great his first year with teams after that all bets are off. Unless the Cubs get hit hard with injuries I can not see the Reds taking the division. They will be in the hunt until at least late August though probably.

4- St. Louis Cardinals- I would like to put them lower what did they do this offseason umm nothing besides swapping Rolen for Glaus not a huge upgrade and losing Edmonds and Eckstein. I will never count out the Cardinals though I have learned this through the years but they just look like there headed for a pretty bad year.

5- Houston Astros- All offense no pitching. Roy Oswalt is a stud obviously they just better hope he stays healthy not that he has healthy problems just saying if they where to lose him they could be competiting with the Pirates for last.

6- Pittsburgh Pirates- Staying in the celler as usual. Is there any hope in Pittsburgh for a turn around?

NL West (just want to say thoughest division around probably will be super fun to watch!!!)

1- Arizona Diamondbacks- I think this is a young team that should be even better this year. They might not win more games but they will likely be improved. I think Dan Haren helps them out too. They need more offense though if they get outscored as much as they did last season I don't think they will be able to survive it again. They could finish anywhere from first to fourth just like any of the top four teams in this division like I said it is absolutely loaded. Glad the Cubs aren't in this division.

2- LA Dodgers- I'm a big Torre fan and I think he will do very well in LA. I think he has LA in the hunt right up to the end what will happen can they win this division or at least the wild card we shall see? They have a lot of questions right now though.

3- Colorado Rockies- I think you could easisely put this team as the top team. They have a great offense the question is will the starting pitching do as well as last season. Your looking at a potential 90 win team though that could end up third.

4- San Diego Padres- Mark Prior yea right lol!!!! Where's the offense? You need some kind of offense to win in this league and they just don't have it they are relying on two many older players.

5- San Fransisco Giants- They are absolutely no threat to win the division but they could surprise a few people. They have some great young starting pitching in Lincecum and Cain that will at least make them competitive. The question is do they have enough offense just like the Pads I don't think so.

NL Playoffs

LA Dodgers def New York Mets in 4 I think Joe Torre works some magic in his first year as Dodgers manager not only does he get them to the post season but he also gets them to shock the Mets in the first round.

Chicago Cubs def Arizona Diamondbacks in 4 pay back is gonna be a major bitch for the D Backs.

Chicago Cubs def LA Dodgers in 6 the Torre magic ends as the Cubs take care of business and knock out the Dodgers.

World Series

Chicago Cubs def Cleveland Indians in 7 could be a really fun matchup especially if the pitching matchups could fall right where you could potentially have Z v CC and Lily v Fausto twice!!!! I hope CC and Fausto maybe have a flashback to last post season when they where less then steller. Cubs win a darmatic world series with Lily and Z pitching there asses off two win games 6 and 7 after being on the brink of elimination!!!

I know I'm being a homer but I just think there is going to be something magical about this season and that will be that the Cubs end there world series drought on the 100 year anniversary!!!

Category: MLB
Posted on: February 4, 2008 1:40 am
 

What Goes Around Comes Around!!!!!

Wow what can I say about the Giants amazing win incredible!!!! The greatest upset ever in my book greater then Super Bowl 3 some how many years ago? This was an 18-0 Patriots team for crying out loud!!!!

So let me get to some thoughts first on the game itself.

Great job by the Giants to generate pressure on Brady he was feeling it and was affected by it. It reminded me of the Dallas game when they harrased Romo late in the game. Justin Tuck was a mad man all over the place.

The game was pretty boring the first 3 quarters I mean 7-3 with not a lot of excitement but then came the fourth quarter the huge reception to the TE got it rolling and it more then made up for the rest of the game.

Way to go Giants on being able to finish it off when I saw that ball in the air to a wide open Plaxico I jumped for joy!!! But honestly the play that I will never ever forget is the one where Mannning somehow came out of that crowd without a sack and then was able to get it to Tyree who makes a one handed helmet catch. That made me saw Holy Shit about 25 times amazing!!!

Patriots where left though with 30 seconds and 3 timeouts why don't you just keep throwing those slants to Welker that you where throwing all day and get yourselves in FG position or in position to go for the end zone. But whatever that was great anyways especially the sack when Brady hit the dirt i'm like there eat that!!!

Ok now to the 1 second deal. Personall I think they should of just ticked it off especially after Belicheat pretty much left the field forfeiting the game in my book!!!! Belicheck proved right there though just how unclassy he is and how he has transformed the Patriots organzation into that as well. He may have brought you 3 Super Bowl's but he is a cheating classless punk and leaving that game like that proves it!!!!

Great to see any team with Randy Moss go down and what about Brady now huh? Can we slow down now on the greatest QB talk!!!!???? Giants came in and dominated them on defense and did just enough on offense to win this game. It was perfect it was sweet WTG G Men!!!! 18-1 all that gets you now is the team that couldn't quite do it!!!

My condolences to all the classy Patriots fans out there because I know there are many. No condlences for the cocky Brady & Belicheck ass kissers like Sean Salsbury!!! And a big fat congrats to the G Men you guys deserved it beating my Packers in Lambeau was impressive but this was even more impressive!!!!

All I can say Patriots what goes around comes around and I think bad karma bit yea!!!

Category: NFL
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com