Jackson is telling everyone to be patient, but it seems as though Bryant is the one losing patience with his teammates. He may have been quiet before, but the Heat’s dismantling of the Lakers has awakened the beast inside Bryant. It’s time for Bryant to send a message to the rest of the squad and set the tone for the remainder of the season.
It would be wrong of me to judge this game based solely on the Lakers character, as it wouldn’t do justice to the way the Heat played or how they’ve been able to find a method that works and execute it each night.
Complacency isn’t the only thing that plagues the two-time defending champions. If they intend on competing for something only three teams have done since 1966—that is, to three-peat—they’ll have to do more than just an attitude adjustment.
Thanks to advanced scouting, teams have figured out how to beat the Lakers. Coming to the hardwood prepared in combination with simply outworking the Lakers appears to be the recipe for defeating the Lake Show, and everyone’s in the kitchen taking down notes.