On Tuesday night, the LA Lakers faces the Oklahoma Thunder in Game 5 of the NBA Playoffs at Staples Center. The Lakers limped back to their home court after a tough series against the Thunder on the road.
With a 2-0 series lead, the Lakers played the Thunder at their home court for games 3 and 4. All sports analyst predicted that it this series would be quick and short. However, all predictions are off after the Thunder bludgeoned the Lakers to tie the series at 2 games apiece.
The Lakers are in total disarray and highly disorganized in their last two losses. Most of the Lakers' players are pinning on Kobe Bryant to explode and takeover the game in crunch time. Kobe is still dangerous every game but nursing numerous injuries could spell trouble for the Lakers. It is quite evident during the second half of each game, Kobe seems to get tired and uneasy because of his nagging injuries.
Phil Jackson must refocus his players to help Kobe for 48-minutes. Kobe could not do it alone especially if he's playing through with injuries. Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum must attack aggressively to score points inside the paint. Force the Thunder's big men to commit unnecessary fouls and errors. They also must improve their transition defense since this is one factor that led to a 21-point loss in Game 4.
The Oklahoma Thunder is slowly building tremendous confidence that they can beat the defending champions. Winning Games 3 and 4 have molded the Thunder team as a worthy playoff opponent of the Lakers. Each player played with passion, they believe in their self and they follow the lead of young All-Star Kevin Durant. To score a major upset in the playoffs, they must continue to play aggressively, score in every transition opportunity and impose a tough defense on the Lakers big men.
With Game 5 scheduled at Staples Center, the basketball handicappers have installed the LA Lakers to beat the Oklahoma Thunder. But, the Thunder and Kevin Durant are ready to fight back on whatever the Lakers throw at them. This is the NBA Playoffs, it's the time of the year were superstars are made.