Lakers: One Chess Piece Away

Lakers beat the Celtics on Sunday proving that the rivalry between the 2 most winning franchises is still in tact. The Lakers this year have been DOMINANT at home cruising to an 18-2 home record, but have been abysmal like an upset stomach needing Pepto Bismol on the road albeit 7-14. The Lakers have been 2 different teams apart from the Staples Center. At home the Lakers are unstoppable, but on the road they look anemic and out of sync. The biggest play of the Lakers vs Celtics game Sunday was a play drawn up in a timeout by Kobe Bryant. Kobe knew that the Celtics would expect the ball to come to him, so he decided to feed his power Big Bynum who was beasting all game let alone this season. The ball entered Bynum’s hands deep into the post and Andrew lofted up a sweet skyhook ala Kareem Abdul Jabbar which was the final blow to put the Celtics away. The Lakers now own the season series 2-0 against the Celtics, and it was another signature win for the Lakeshow. The other big wins for the Lakers this season was the 93-83 10 point blowout of the “Mighty” Miami Heat, a game in which the Masked Mamba dominated with 33 “payback for Dwade breaking my nose” points, and Bynum Gasol and Metta World War added a combined 44 points. It seems that Metta World Peace becomes Metta World War when the Lakers play big games vs top teams. Dwayne was ejected from that game and the Lakers and Kobe had sweet revenge against the hated Heat. The Lakers also beat the reigning champion Mavericks in Dallas 96-91. The key thing for the Lakers is to FEED the Bigs cuz they HUNGRY hungry hippos! Bynum is having a career year with 17 ppg and 12 rpg even starting in his 1st All Star Game. Pau Gasol has stepped it up lately and is contributing with double double games and he is averaging 16.6 ppg and 10.5rpg. The Masked Mamba has been unstoppable. Everyone expects it, it is just Kobe being Kobe. Kobe the Closer Assassin is averaging 28.8 pts looking for his 3rd scoring title and hopefully his 6th Championship ring.

So what does this team need in order to get back to the Finals and win it. Well the Lakers are just one chess piece away from winning it all. The coveted piece the Lakers desperately need is a YOUNG Athletic scoring point guard. The Lakers need to a Deron Williams orĀ  Rajon Rondo to get back into serious contention. DWill would open up the floor so much for the Bigs with his innate passing ability as well as his ability to drive to the lane and score, not to mention that he is a terrific 3 point shooter (something the Lakers lack). Dwill is perennially the best point guard in the game, and if the Lakers were able to sign him than they would be able to hoist the #17 Banner in Staples Center. Rondo is also a great fit for the Lakers as he can lob it to Bynum as well as penetrate to the cup himself. The Lakers desperately need a point guard to signing an elite young point guard not only helps the present but also the future. Forget trying to aquire Dwight Howard, Bynum has proven to be just as good if not better. The Lakers real concern is starting point guard and bench play. The Bench for the Lakers is non-existent and looks like a jv girls basketball team. Derek Fisher who is clutch is even old in dinosaur years as he gets torched on a nightly basis on the defensive end. Steve Blake is not much better? Im not sure why he even has a job in the NBA. He does nothing right. He cant shoot or hit the wide open 3 ball, he cant defend, not a good passer, and he cant drive to the lane and score. The only bright spot for guard play other than Kobe Bryant is the Mini Mamba aka Andrew Goudelock who has proven he can hit the perimeter jumpshot as well as penetrate to the hoop and score. So for the Lakers to stop being inconsistent on the road and play like they do at home, they need a young scoring athletic point guard. I would prefer Dwill over Rondo for the fact that Rondo is an inconsistent shooter and relies on beating his opponents off the dribble. Ultimately if the Lakers play inside out and feed there Twin Towers like we have seen against Boston, Miami, and Dallas then nobody can stop them. Bynum and Gasol need to demand the ball and stay physical and Ron Metta Artest needs to go World War on cats and start the rumble in the jungle. Kobe will remain the Black Mamba and strike at will, but the Lakers need a younger point guard who is a proven scorer and facilitator to bring them back to that Championship level. Lamar Odom is really what the Lakers miss in terms of bench play, he was a do it all type of player that our second unit lacks right now. If the Lakers believe they can contend for a Title they need to tighten up on bench play as well as go after a solid young starting point guard. Lakers Management will either wait until the offseason to make a Blockbuster free agent signing, or they will try to ride this thing out. The trade deadline is only 3 days away and it appears that Mitch Kupchak is being forced to sit on his hands by management and try to clear as much cap space as possible. Jim Buss is trying to save money and make a profit and appears unwilling to spend to get maximum output type of quality players. We will see if the Lakers can make a trade for Deron Williams or Rajon Rondo, but by my estimation the Lakers might only make a few small tweaks if any and keep this current roster in tact. From here until March 15th its all a waiting game, like Dec 24th and hoping to wake up in the morning to unwrap an Xbox 360 underneath the Christmas Tree. Will the Lakers land a 360? We will just wait and find out.