Photo courtesy Patrick Pho
It was challenging enough that both John Wall and Andray Blatche were listed as inactive prior to Tuesday’s game against the Lakers. The starting line-up of Thornton, Yi, McGee, Arenas, and Hinrich were quickly depleted when McGee picked up two fouls and Yi left the game with a knee sprain that will now keep him off the court for 2-4 weeks.
After staying competitive for a quarter the Lakers turned on the juice and showed the Wizards why they are two-time reigning World Champions. As the their second unit took the floor in the 2nd quarter fellow writer Sam Chamberlain made an astute observation, “both second units are in the game- except the Wizard’s second unit is their starting lineup!” The Lakers would outscore the Wizard35-22 in that quarter and go on to whip the Wizards 103-89.
All eyes were on superstar Kobe Bryant the moment he ran onto the court for warm-ups. Despite double-teams, Bryant effortlessly drained a long-range jumper early in the game, quickly setting the tone for the rest of the game: you can’t stop the Laker offense. After that the Black Mamba remained relatively quiet as he sat much of the second quarter. However in the third quarter Bryant made he mark scoring 16 of his total 24 points. After the game Kobe keenly remarked, “It got going for me in the third quarter.”
It was a team effort regarding the Laker’s win over the Wiz. Number 24 scores 24 points in only 24 minutes, sitting the last 13.5 minutes of the game. Most of the starting line-up ended the night with double-digit points, from Ron Artest (10 pts), to Lamar Odom (18 pts), to Pau Gasol (16 pts).
Yesterday I talked about the game on TBD TV and there isn’t much to analyze here. The Wizards were a depleted team that didn’t stand a chance against the West Coast powerhouse.
The one bright spot on the Wizards side of the ball was Nick Young. He demonstrated strong offense off the bench scoring 21 points. He is now averaging 13.2 points per game and has provided some excitement among fans as a quick source of points.
Today the Wizards travel to play the Nets with Wall and Blatche doubtful to play. We can only hope they can rest up as DC looks ahead to Saturday’s match against LeBron James and The Heat in the Verizon Center.
- The Lakers game was well attended by representatives from the other three sports teams. DeAngelo Hall, Donovan McNabb (who has booed), Mike Sellers, Alex Ovechkin, and the newly signed Jayson Werth were spotted at the game.
- With Yi out of the game we saw a lot of playing time from former French pro Kevin Seraphin. He played 15 minutes 2-6 for 6 points.
- You would expect that Kobe and the Lakers would bring in a big crowd, but only 16,513 attended Tuesday’s game. I can only hope a weekend game against the Heat will bring in better numbers- because if it doesn’t it tells a sad tale of fan disenchantment for the season.