The Lakers made history last night; it was the first time since 1967 they were swept out of the first round in the playoffs. They fell to the Spurs 120-89 in Game 4. Morris and Goudelock started again for L.A. as guards Kobe Bryant, Steve Blake, Steve Nash, and Jodie Meeks were all injured.
Injuries and age are what have been holding the Lakers back this season. Pau and Kobe, who once led the Lakers to a string of successes, are both getting up there. Nash at 39, found it hard to keep up with younger PGs. But then what is Dwight’s excuse, who at 27, is still terrible on offense, and no where near as explosive and athletic as he was in Orlando.
Many will point to his back, but I say it’s more complicated than that. Howard’s offensive arsenal in the post is a joke for how far along in his career he is. If he can’t drop step dunk after getting super deep Dwight won’t feel comfortable in any offensive play he is going to do. As my friend today said, “Dwight gets stripped going across the lane more than any big man I can remember.” I don’t disagree.
At the end of the day, experience with health isn’t always a bad thing. Look at San Antonio; veteran players Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, and Manu Ginobili destroyed the Lakers last night. Kobe Bryant will hopefully be back this summer training and getting back to 100% before the start of the 2013-2014 season. However, if this Lakers year taught us anything, it is that money cannot buy you a championship.
Get smart Lakers. Downsize and bring in B+ players that Kobe can mold for the remaining 2-3 years. Build up your future with Bryant at the front, who has done nothing but dedicate his basketball career to Los Angeles, as part player and part coach. And save your money. L.A. does not need to pay $85 million in taxes in 2013-2014.
Over the rest of tonight and the next few days, we at LN will be grading this 2012-2013 Lakers roster for you. The season didn’t end as many wanted and with the postseason approaching, expect some interesting player moves.
Lakers Nation News
2013 Lakers Summer Guide [Silver Screen and Roll]
A Moment of Silence for the 2012-2013 Los Angeles Lakers [Silver Screen and Roll]
Spurs complete sweep of Lakers, Final Score: 103-82 [Silver Screen and Roll]
Lakers, Dwight Howard Need to Walk Away From Each Other [LA Times]
Spurs Sweep Lakers Out of the Playoffs [latimes.com]
Dwight Howard of Los Angeles Lakers Ejected After 2nd Technical Foul [ESPN]
Dwight Howard Says This Season Was ‘like a nightmare’ After Getting Ejected in Lakers Season-Ending Loss to Spurs [ProBasketballTalk]
Lakers’ Dwight Howard to ‘step away for a couple weeks’ Before Contemplating Free Agency [The Point Forward]
Rapid Reaction: Spurs 103, Lakers 82 [ESPN Los Angeles]
The 2013 Lakers and the Wrath of the Basketball Gods [CBSSports.com]
Lakers/Spurs: Mercy Killing, Swift And Quick [Forum Blue And Gold]
Lakers’ Pau Gasol is Steady as He Goes … Away? [latimes.com]
Future for Los Angeles Lakers, Dwight Howard, Kobe Bryant [SI.com]
Report: Dwight Howard to Talk to Other Teams Besides Lakers This Summer [ProBasketballTalk]
Lakers’ Horrid Season Ends; Fixing it Will Hurt, May Include Losing Kobe [CBSSports.com]
Into the Unknown for Los Angeles Lakers’ Pau Gasol [ESPN Los Angeles]
Gregg Popovich on Lakers: ‘It wasn’t a fair fight’ [latimes.com]
Lakers’ Future On Hold As Contradictory Dwight Howard Takes Step Back [Hang Time Blog]
Spurs Bring Lakers Season to its Merciful Conclusion with Game 4 Win, Sweep of the Series [ProBasketballTalk]
LAL 82, Spurs 103: Game 4 Running Diary [Lakers Blog]
VIDEO: Dwight Howard is Ejected in Final Lakers’ Game This Season [CBSSports.com]
Breaking Down the Lakers’ End [ESPN]
Series in Review: Spurs Dismantle the Lakers in Four Games [CBSSports.com]
L.A. Lakers Must Consider Payroll Options [latimes.com]
During 2011 playoffs, Phil Jackson Told Lakers he Had Prostate Cancer [ProBasketballTalk]
Stephen Curry’s Shooting Explosion was Aided by Bad Denver Nuggets Defense [SB Nation]
A Lakers’ Postseason Without Kobe Bryant Was a Strange Sight [CBSSports.com]
Knicks Coach Woodson Says Amar’e Stoudemire ‘absolutely’ Will Play in the Second Round if He’s Ready [ProBasketballTalk]
Boston Celtics Win Game 4 Against Knicks, Avoid First-Round Elimination [SI.com]
Conley Coming Up Big for Grizzlies [NBA.com]
Kings sale: NBA Owners Vote Against Move to Seattle [SB Nation]
Heat Wrap Up Bucks in First-Round Sweep, Continue March Toward Repeat Title [The Point Forward]
Friend: Heat Still Front-Runner to Keep LeBron in 2014 [FanNation]
Down 3-1 After Collapse, Nets Not Looking Back [NBA.com]
Jason Collins’ Bold Statement [SB Nation]
Sixers Reach Out to Brian Shaw About Coaching Job [ProBasketballTalk]
Kirk Hinrich of Chicago Bulls Questionable for Game 5 [ESPN Chicago]
J.R. Smith Suspended One Game for Elbow He Landed to the Face of Jason Terry [ProBasketballTalk]