While the proverbial switch may or may not exist, it is shockingly apparent when it is in the “on” position. Granted, the Lakers have lost some games that they played well in because that is life. I think it is clear, though, to even casual observers and especially to Lakers fans when their team is fully engaged.
The stat boxes tend to fill up, but it is the little things that get done, the extra-effort plays like altering shots with defense and getting the second opportunity on offense that showcase the difference between apathy and commitment.
Things were going so well for the Lakers that I smiled after almost every shot without thinking. It happened most often when Kobe or Shannon or Ron or whoever would hit a shot from downtown. As well as they played inside the paint, the jumpers were falling at a high rate too. It makes me genuinely happy to see the team do well, and it makes a nice change from yelling at the tv in aggravation!
Of course, what would a Lakers game be without a jaw dropping dunk courtesy of Shannon Brown? It came early on and quite literally made my jaw drop and my eyes bug out: off a pass from Kobe, he took two absolutely giant steps from the vicinity of the free throw line corner and slammed it home one handed. While he might not be the most creative dunker- hence his less-than-stellar Slam Dunk performance last year- he is certainly one of the most explosive and exciting in-game dunkers that the NBA has today.