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Thursday, April 11th, 2013 at 9:00 am  |  88 responses

Post Up: When There’s a Will…

Kobe drops 47 to keep the Lakers in the playoff hunt.

by Peter Walsh

Hawks 124 (43-36), Sixers 101 (31-47)

Atlanta ended their three-game losing streak with a 23-point drubbing of the Sixers in Philly. Josh Smith led the way with 28 points and 12 boards while John Jenkins finished with 21 points and 6 dimes. ATL shot just under 54 percent from the field and beat up the Sixers inside, outscoring them 52-40 in the paint and winning the battle on the boards 44-41. The Hawks opened the second half with an 18-6 run that pushed their lead to twenty and they cruised to the finish. Thad Young led the Sixers with 28 points and 8 boards and Nick Young scored 19 off the bench.

Heat 103 (62-16), Wizards 98 (29-50)

With Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh, and LeBron all on the bench with the night off, Ray Allen scored 23 points, grabbed 6 boards and dropped 4 dimes to lead Miami to the win and home court advantage in the playoffs. With the win, the Heat also clinched the best record in the NBA and set the franchise record for wins with 62. Clap for ‘em. John Wall scored 17 points and dished out 11 assists while A.J. Price scored 23 off the bench.

Magic 113 (20-59), Bucks 103 (37-41) F/OT

The Bucks had the Magic dead-to-rights up five in the final minute of regulation when the wheels fell off. Poor free throw shooting doomed the Bucks (they shot 65 percent from the stripe for the game) and allowed the Magic to hang around late in the game. With 1.9 seconds left, former Buck Tobias Harris sent the game to overtime with a 3-pointer from the top of the key. In the extra session, the Magic took over as Vucevic and Harris combined for nine points to help Orlando snap their five-game losing streak. Harris finished with 30 points, 19 boards and 5 assists while Vucevic scored 30 and grabbed 20 boards. Brandon Jennings and Larry Sanders both left the game with minor injuries. Monta Ellis scored 21 points and dropped 11 dimes to lead the Bucks.

Pistons 111 (27-52), Cavs 104 (24-54)

No defense, lots of fouling and horrible 3-point shooting sums up this mess of a game. Andre Drummond scored 29 points and grabbed 11 boards and Greg Monroe scored 23 and grabbed 8 boards to lead the Pistons.

Nets 101 (46-32), Celtics 93 (40-38)

With last night’s win over the Celtics, the Nets moved one game closer to fourth place in the Eastern Conference and home court advantage in their extremely successful first season in BK. The Nets took a ten point lead into the fourth quarter and the slumping Celtics couldn’t come from behind for the win. The Nets’ 8-0 fourth quarter run put this one on ice. Boston has lost four of their last six. Deron Williams paced Brooklyn with 29 points and 12 dimes, Brook Lopez scored 21 and Joe Johnson dropped 20. Paul Pierce led the Celtics with 23 points.

Suns 102 (24-55) Mavs 91 (38-40)

Last night’s loss against the Suns may go down as one of the worst losses in Mavericks franchise history. The Suns are terrible and for a Mavericks team that was fighting for their lives, a loss was unacceptable. Unfortunately for Dallas, the Lakers win over Portland means they are mathematically eliminated from the playoffs so they won’t even have a chance to make up for it. Goran Dragic led Phoenix with 21 points and 13 dimes while Wesley Johnson scored 17. Shawn Marion scored 22 points and grabbed 9 boards and Dirk finished with 21 points and 8 boards.

Kings 121 (28-50), Hornets 110 (27-52)

John Salmons scored 22 points, Jason Thompson scored 20 and grabbed 8 boards and Marcus Thornton scored 20 points off the bench. Nothing else to see here.

Lakers 113 (42-37), Blazers 106 (33-45)

Kobe Bryant is determined to get the Lakers to the playoffs and is doing everything in his power to get the team there. Kobe dropped a season-high 47 points on 14-27 shooting (18-18 from the stripe), grabbed 8 boards, dished out 5 assists and had 3 steals to lead the Lakers to a win over the Blazers in Portland. As tremendous as Bean was, he didn’t do it himself. Pau Gasol played one of the best games of the season, finishing with 23 points, 7 boards and 9 dimes while frontcourt mate Dwight Howard scored 20 and grabbed 10 boards. With the win, LA is now one game ahead of the Jazz for the final playoff spot as the Western Conference race comes down to the wire. Dame Lillard was fantastic and finished with a career-high 38 points (12-25 shooting, 9-9 from the striped) and 9 dimes. Portland has lost nine straight.

Nuggets 96 (54-24), Spurs 86 (57-21)

The Spurs came out of the gate on fire and jumped out to a quick 14-0 lead. After a timeout by George Karl, Denver calmed down and got back to their gameplan. The Nuggets outscored the Spurs 27-19 in the second quarter and 31-26 in the third to take control of the game and hold on down the stretch. Wilson Chandler played 40 minutes and scored 29 points to go along with 8 boards and 4 dimes. Andre Iguodala finished with a 12-point, 13-rebound, 10-assist triple-double and Corey Brewer scored 28 off the bench as he and Chandler will see an increase in their minutes with Gallo done for the season. Tim Duncan led the Spurs with 17 points. Denver hasn’t lost at home since January.

Clippers 111 (52-26), Timberwolves 95 (29-49)

Chris Paul scored 19 points, dropped 11 dimes, grabbed 7 boards, came up with 4 steals and had 2 blocks to lead the Clippers to an easy dub over the T’Wolves. Six other Clippers scored in double-figures, including, Blake Griffin (19 and 8), Matt Barnes (14) and Willie Green (15). Nik Pekovic scored 20 points and Derrick Williams dropped 13 and grabbed 10 boards in the loss.

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  • Anthony Dixon

    When there a D Will……..

  • playa

    Kobe Kobe Kobe…..LEGENDARY stuff out there.But but,their 2 man game with Pau is looking great and resembles glorious past- Dwight,stand aside, defend & enjoy the ride(which will not be a long one,but nonetheless)

  • http://twitter.com/vannshy vannshy

    seeing his players rotation last night (bench playing almost as much as the starters) i dont think Pop cares much about 2nd or 1st seed, Manu and TP health being his main concern obviously. Means if things stay like this we’ll have OKC/LA in the 1st round, don’t know how LA fans feel about this.

  • Max

    What the hell:
    John Henson: 17, 25 and 7 blocks.
    Tobias Harris: 30 and 19.
    Nik Vucevic: 30 and 20.
    What’s wrong with the NBA?

  • spit hot fiyah

    deron Williams is playing as if he wants to be back in everyone’s top 3 point guard list

  • spit hot fiyah

    video game mode

  • ChosenOne

    Huge M-V-P chants last night for Kobe. Dude was unreal once again.

  • LLC#12

    Surely the Lakers would much rather face the Spurs, the Lakers are terrible at defending athletic point guards. Even if Parker is a better PG than Russ, he won’t destroy the Lakers in the same way.

  • Drig

    Kobe had a pretty neat defensive quarter of play to go with his offensive burst as well. 48 minutes again. 3 times in the last 5 games. Mamba going all out.

  • http://twitter.com/thursti_tyht Thurstian Tsui

    Can someone explain to me why Terry Stotts ran a two point guard lineup and forced Lillard to guard Kobe?

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    the good player’s are sitting. and teams are no longer trying.

  • Caboose

    Kobe looked great last night. Here’s how I see the Playoffs playing out though:
    Lakers vs Warriors: Lakers Win
    Lakers vs Spurs: Spurs win
    Lakers vs Rockets: Rockets win
    Lakers: 43-39
    Jazz vs Wolves: Jazz win
    Jazz @ Wolves: Jazz win
    Jazz vs Grizzlies: Grizzlies win
    Jazz: 43-39
    Basically, the Lakers have to beat 2 out of the next 3 teams, and hope Utah loses to Memphis

  • RayJr

    Yeah OKC is a much tougher matchup for the Lakers. Durant and Westbrook just tear them apart. The Lakers would have a chance if they played every game like they did last night.

  • Caboose

    Lillard actually did ok. Kobe TORCHED Barton, Maynor and f*cking Sasha.

  • RayJr

    I only see the Rockets giving them a hard time. They just make so many 3s it is hard to keep up with them.

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  • Caboose

    Houston is 2-1 vs LA and has looked quite good lately.

  • Caboose

    Can you really do nothing about this SLAM?

  • RayJr

    Obviously a huge win by LA and Kobe coming up huge defensively…Yes I said defensively. Also, how about Steve Blake fouling Lillard on the 3, getting a tech, then Lillard stealing the ball and making a 3? With the 4 FTs and the 3 that was 7 points in about 14 seconds.

  • http://twitter.com/vannshy vannshy

    Don’t know about the Spurs, did you see the players rotation last night ? Everyone on the bench is playing +20min and i think it will go on like this till the Playoffs, the hardest games will definitely be the others two.

  • Caboose

    I expect Pop to go all out vs the Lakers because:
    1. Spurs would rather see the Jazz than the Lakers
    2. Would be a great momentum builder
    3. Pop loves to see LA lose

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Or Pop rests his guys, loses (on purpose). And plays Houston as the 2nd seed.

  • Caboose

    good point. But see #2 and #3

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    putting Will Barton on Kobe is too damn funny

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Maybe Pop would rather let LA play OKC is what I kinda meant

  • Drig

    I’d rather we face Spurs. Not because I’m scared of OKC ( OKC will be a thorn in the West for the years to come anyways ). I want to see Pop and Duncan vs Kobe one more time……for nostalgia. Esp. when both are balling like it’s 03 all over again.

  • MUBWAR

    last night was just eff up. 2k13 style

  • Max

    There were no good players who were sitting tho.

  • Drig

    I don’t think Pop’s gonna disrespect the Lakers and Utah by doing that. I think he’ll put a strong team out there to contend but won’t go the extra mile to get the win.

  • Drig

    I think LAL will probably lose vs the Warriors and win vs the Rockets.

    I don’t care if LAL lose all 3 games if Utah loses them first TBH…..

  • Caboose

    Lol, it’s just hard to imagine Minny beating anyone right now. Jazz are almost guaranteed to go 2-1 over the next 3.

  • http://twitter.com/thursti_tyht Thurstian Tsui

    Kobe was unreal though

  • Caboose

    Yes, if there is any below average defender on him, he makes them pay. Pretty much instantly. He and Melo have that skill down. Durant and Bron are getting there.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    That’s not disrespect. If anything, that’s a show of respect. You don’t put yourself in a worse position to hurt a team you don’t respect lol

  • RayJr

    Yeah this is why I love slam comments section bc it didn’t have any of this crap like a TMZ or stupid celeb sites like that.

  • Drig

    I know the chances of Utah losing to Minny are as high as LAL making the Finals lol. I’m hoping Utah goes cold at Minny and Pek manages to subdue their frontline. That’d be enough to stop them……

    I also hope that Rockets mail in a game and let Harden rest if the 6 seed is out of the Rockets’ grasp. He’s gonna have his hands full vs SAS or OKC. Might as well let him and Asik have a breather when they can…….right? Right? RIGHT?! ( Someone tell me I’m right………)

  • Caboose

    Haha it could happen, for sure. But there is this factor: other teams don’t like the Lakers. If they see blood in the water and know they could keep LA out of the playoffs, would they be more likely to go all out?

  • Drig

    I’m pretty sure 25 other teams would love nothing more than to screw over the Lakers every chance they get this season. The rest of them probably don’t even care since they’re more worried about the NBA Finals lol.

  • Caboose

    Haha name me ONE team that wouldn’t love to see the Lakers miss the playoffs outside of the Lakers.

  • Drig

    Wouldn’t that mean Pop would be better off playing Duncan his normal minutes in order to prepare him for the POs????

  • http://twitter.com/thursti_tyht Thurstian Tsui

    Well Brandon Jennings if you count him and Larry Sanders.

  • Drig

    I don’t think a hot Bron will be as great a scorer as Melo or Kobe or even Durant are when they get hot. I don’t think he’ll ever develop Kobe’s footwork or his split-second start stop fadeaway Js or Melo and Durant’s range. Plus, he’s too level-headed to even try some shots Kobe and Melo put up on a regular basis when they’re red-hot lol.

    Not that he needs to be like that anytime soon though. Watching MIA in the clutch in close games is almost like watching me play NBA 2k13. Open lane? Dunk. Closed lane? Kick out for a definite 3…………

  • Drig

    …..
    ………
    ……….
    *an awkward pause*

    …..
    …….

    Detroit maybe? They probably don’t even care about the Lakers……right……yeah!…..
    ….
    …..
    …….
    LAL has got their work cut out the next 3 games………

  • http://twitter.com/thursti_tyht Thurstian Tsui

    I agree. Lebron is damn near unstoppable when he’s hot but I have to agree that Melo and Kobe’s have a much greater arsenal to punish bad defenders.

  • Caboose

    Haha that’s my point. I say they get 1 out of 3.

  • Drig

    Killjoy.

  • Caboose

    It’s what I do :D

  • DeMacksBack

    Not trying to argue and say you’re wrong, but Lillard was getting torched by Bryant as well!! It just didn’t look that bad, because Stotts finally had a light go off and he doubled Bryant every time he took Lillard to iso island!!

  • Caboose

    Should have prefaced, Lillard did good in the first half. Fourth quarter, it didn’t matter.

  • Max

    I’ll give you Larry Sanders.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    I really don’t have any idea what Pops play is with the minute situation

  • DeMacksBack

    If you call 28 in the first half (17 points in the first quarter) good than I guess so. I know you can’t really stop any high caliber 1on1 in the league, but I don’t think that deserves a good d remark. But I think the blame should be on Stotts lol.

  • http://twitter.com/thursti_tyht Thurstian Tsui

    And I’d say Ilyasova too haha

  • Caboose

    Dude, Lillard didn’t guard him the ENTIRE first half. I watched the whole game; when Lillard was on him, Kobe did much less damage than when Barton or Maynor were.

  • Max

    Depends on which Ilyasova was gonna show up.
    Probably the good one tho.

  • Max

    And how about Andre Drummond, he’s looking really really promising since returning from his injury.

  • LakeShow

    What’s a ‘John Henson’ and why is it grabbing 25 boards and blocking 7 shots…

  • KevinJohnsonFan

    Kobe’s pushed himself harder than ever just to get this team to an 8th seed. If they make it, have to wonder what he will have left in the playoffs going up against the Thunder or Spurs. Still see a first round exit for them especially if they get the Thunder. Durant and Westbrook will run them to death in a quick 4 or 5 games.

  • http://twitter.com/vannshy vannshy

    I expect Pop to play the bench for the last 3 game because:
    1. OKC now have the lead since they have the tie-breaker, so playing Utah or LA is not SA’s concern anymore, plus OKC’s next game are GS, SAC and Portland, i don’t see why Pop would want to go all out since there’s a good chance OKC wins those last 3 games anyway.
    2. some momentum vs try to get the rythme back for the bench players, in 2005 (a long time ago i know) SA finished the season 9-8. I don’t think winning the last 3 games will change anything, what we need is TP and Manu back, and the bench playing well again (also assuming TD is playing like the last 10 games) to have any chance of going to the WCF again.
    3. it’s not out of the equation to see Pop trying to steal that game

  • DeMacksBack

    I never said he guarded Kobe the ENTIRE first half. I just gave you Kobe’s first half number, which would’ve hopefully shown you that no one really did an ok/good job on Kobe. No one played good D this game besides Kobe, which is funny because he has been horrible this year on d and it helped that he was guarding Barton lol. And if you look at Lillard’s defensive rating he is one of the worst defenders in the league , so I really don’t know how he did a ok/good job on Kobes!! I watched the game as well!! “Just a friendly debate” lol

  • Caboose

    Well put

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Larry Sanders is their best player, so….

  • LakeShow

    That was probably Kobe’s best game of the season.

    Right when they needed it most no less. Talk about clutch.
    Good thing Portland has no one…
    Still, I take a win at the Rose Garden every time!

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    if only Pau didn’t talk about how he didn’t enjoy the game last night….

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    bron scored 56 once.

    .

    Durant/Melo, never done that.

    .

    just for the record.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    i really really am pissed i didn’t get to watch this game.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Lakers have 3 home games. I doubt they lose 2 of 3 at home.

  • LakeShow

    download dat shish.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Can’t, downloading anything is not an option for me

  • LakeShow

    I don’t blame ya. Danger zone. But fuggem.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    If this weren’t a work computer that I plan on occupying for the next 40 years…

  • LakeShow

    Gasol totally threw Kobe under the bus…

    “It’s bittersweet,” Pau Gasol said when asked about Bryant’s dominating performance against the Blazers, in which he played all 48 minutes in a non-overtime road game for the first time in his career. “Because, I think it’s spectacular and it’s very impressive and it’s remarkable to be able to play 48 minutes and score 47 points. That’s incredible. On the other hand, I’m a player that likes to see a little bit more ball movement and better balance. I’ve always been [like that]. That’s just how I perceive this game.

    Tsk’ tsk’ Pau. Shouldn’t go to the media like that.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk
  • LakeShow

    It’s tough man. Real tough…

    I mean like they said, it’s muddled up out side the top 3.

    I side with KB because of what he’s been doing all season offensively, and the fact that he’s been buckling down and playing some much needed tough D in these crucial last few games. In addition to the minutes he’s played. Normally more minutes played isn’t impressive to me, but considering the mileage and the usage he has it is pretty extraordinary.

    I admit that D-Wade might be the better overall player now, but if i’m choosing a player for my team on any given night… it’s Kobe. I know he’s gunna be there night in and night out and that plays a big part in it to me.

    Harden and Westbrook both have a say, but I still feel KB is the better player. I mean shoot, Duncan has a say too….

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    great explanation of your opinion. i have no reason to call you an idiot (<– joke, i never really have a good reason). sh*t, i almost agree

  • http://www.rich-imaging.com/ Dutch Rich

    Dude, you finally joining the labor force, congrats. Does this mean you won’t have a daily 8 to 12 hours to spend on advanced NBA digest anymore?

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    ahhh, wasn’t that ignorant.

  • http://twitter.com/conorklnohara Conor O’Hara

    The best highlight compilation for any team that I’ve seen: http://lakersmedia.com/

  • Guest

    What is he talking about? There was both ball movement and balance. Once again, Meeks, Clark, Jamison (injury-based), and MWP (same) did not make their open opportunities. Kobe’s the only reason why they didn’t need to attempt a 20-point comeback after the first half.

    Gasol and Howard didn’t get going until the second half.

  • http://twitter.com/conorklnohara Conor O’Hara

    Balance=Bryant/Gasol/Howard combining for 90/25/15

    Imbalance=Role players fading into a confidence void.

  • http://www.rich-imaging.com/ Dutch Rich

    Here’s another ole man story. You know when I was in my early 20′s I was living in Paris, pretty much broke, no tv, e-mail was barely available. The only daily dose of NBA came from the USA today (David Dupree). My friend would occasionally get a Bulls game sent from the States. I would order VHS tapes from Switzerland from a company called Pontel (they’re still around). To this day I’m still mad about all the games I missed during those years….but on the bright side I learned how to speak fluent French!

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Congratulations?
    .
    I’ve had this job for 8 years. I own a house, and have a family. And I’m 26. Good for you or whatever on French, but I don’t see what lesson you are trying to prove.

  • LakeShow

    The ball movement was really, really good last night.
    I hope they continue the ball movement, defense, and intensity.
    IF they do that, they COULD make some noise.

  • http://www.rich-imaging.com/ Dutch Rich

    just drawing a parallel on being pissed about missing games. I don’t believe you about the job part though but whatever.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Ok? I don’t care, lol you believing me doesn’t make a difference.

  • http://twitter.com/conorklnohara Conor O’Hara

    ^ Me.

  • http://www.rich-imaging.com/ Dutch Rich

    a difference in what?

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Anything. I didn’t tell you that to brag or whatever you think I would lie about that for. I said it because I genuinely didn’t understand what the hell you were telling me that information for. Seemed like you were trying to show me something based on your own experience about focusing too much on basketball or something. So I showed why I don’t have that problem.

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