Fancap: The Battle of the Magic Kingdoms

That being said, it seemed like the game would be competitive.  The Lakers relied heavily on Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol in the paint to start the contest.  At one point in the 1st quarter, Bynum and Gasol combined to take 12 of the Lakers’ last 17 shots.  I always like when we start out in aggressive big man mode, with Kobe as the facilitator. Pau actually took a charge and drew Dwight Howard’s second foul, which I thought was fantastic.

Lamar Odom continued his recent stellar play as well, finishing with 15 points, 8 rebounds and a steal which are right about his season averages.  He’s also averaging a career high 55 percent field goal percentage.  I feel like every week, no matter what is going on with the rest of the team and who is or isn’t stepping up, Lamar is holding steady.

He’s the rock of the team and the most consistent player this season.  He also brings great energy and hustle, as evidenced in the second quarter when he fell out of bounds corralling a long pass from Steve Blake and tipping it in to Luke Walton.

When Kobe did look for his own shots, he stayed in the middle of the court which helped to open up the perimeter. Unfortunately one of the problems yesterday was the Lakers’ shooting. They only shot 39% for the game and were held to a season low for points.  They were also out-rebounded and played shoddy defense for most of the night.

It didn’t help that Orlando attempts the most three pointers of any team in the league and actually hit many of them.  When they’re able to hit three point shots, it opens up the middle of the floor for Dwight Howard.  I will admit, my mouth fell open when he had that monstrous alley oop slam as the third quarter buzzer expired. It was straight up nasty! It also made me dream of 2012 when the Lakers might be able to lure another Superman from Orlando…

Next: The Golden Days

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