This just about sums up the Lakers postseason performance…
The Dallas Mavericks ousted the reigning champion Los Angeles Lakers in dominant fashion, concluding a four game sweep with a 122-86 victory. Jason Terry, Peja Stojakovic and JJ Barea combined for 77 points and the Mavs bench equaled the Lakers total with 86 as the Mavs dominated game four at home and moved on to the Western Conference Finals. The Lakers were never really in it as they trailed by 24 at the half, before losing by 36 to an old, but cohesive Mavericks squad that looks ready to contend for a championship.
Mavericks’ sixth man, Jason Terry led the way with 32 points and tied an NBA record with nine 3pt field goals (9-10 3pt, 11-14 FG). He exploded for 5 three pointers in the second quarter as he personally outscored the Lakers 20-16 and his team never looked back. Terry also had help from NBA vet, Peja Stojakovic who dropped 21 points on 7 for 7 shooting (6-6 3 pt). Peja truly turned back the clocks and dialed it in for this game and helped send the Lakers packing. JJ Barea added 22 points and 8 assists as he performed tremendously off the bench and at times made the Lakers defense look foolish. The Puerto Rican backup was on the receiving end, AGAIN, of some horrendous and classless play from the Lakers late in the game.
Early in the fourth quarter, Lakers Forward Lamar Odom was ejected after launching an elbow at Mavericks star, Dirk Nowitzki. Obviously frustrated and upset that Dirk was still in the game, Odom threw an elbow into Nowitzki’s midsection as he came down the court. Odom was immediately ejected.
Shortly afterwards, Lakers Center Andrew Bynum took a dirty cheap shot at Barea as he drove the lane and hit a floater. Bynum was also immediately ejected and walked off the court with his jersey off. A suspension is expected for Bynum for the beginning of next year’s NBA season. ESPN analyst, Mike Wilbon tweeted…
“Hard to believe that the Lakers would go out in such a classless, bush league way. Bynum should miss at least the first 3 games next year…w(ith) ORL(ANDO).”
The Lakers showed no class in losing as they got blown out by a team that worked harder and played better the entire series. Something seemed to be missing within the Lakers locker room and who knows what it really was. One rumor has it that Kobe’s wife may have cost the team a championship as she may have spilled gossip to Pau Gasol’s girlfriend about Gasol’s infidelities, facilitating a break-up. Gasol has denied that rumor, but there was definitely something wrong with the Lakers as they looked dysfunctional for most of the series. Whatever it is, the Lakers need to figure something out as this team’s window is certainly closing as Kobe grows older and the chemistry sputters outs. Wilbon added…
“Some kind of disconnect w(ith) this Lakers team. They were a disappointment all season long…Bynum’s “lack of trust” rant was on the money…”
What makes this embarrassing exit even worse? The fact that it was Phil Jackson’s last season coaching, at least according to him. The coaching legend is retiring after 11 championships. The Lakers ended Jackson’s career on a very disappointing note, but he is sticking to the plan and will retire to Montana with his girlfriend…Sorry Kobe, but MJ would have never done Phil like that. That being said, I think this season proves that there will never be another Jordan. 23>24.