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Lakers still laughing off Nuggets

Feb 27, 2010, 6:11 PM EDT

The Lakers haven’t been exactly awesome against the Western second place Nuggets this season. They’re 0-2 against Denver this season, and the games haven’t exactly been down to the wire.

But still, the Lakers are nothing if (over-)confident. And despite the fact that we’re now entering the part of the season where they say the games “matter” (as opposed to the rest of the games this season which don’t count towards playoff seeding, apparently), the Lakers’ hubris is as strong as ever. The blessing of being the defending champs, as it were.

Via Kevin Ding’s Twitter account, we get this jewel from Lamar Odom:

They really look forward to playing us. … We just saw it as one more game.”

Well, then. As long as you’re bringing your A-game, Lamar.

And after reading the deep smattering of dismissals from essentially everyone on the Lakers not named Josh Powell from Chris Tomasson, it’s apparent that LO is not the only Laker that refuses to admit the Nuggets may be a legitimate rival.

Tomasson notes that it will take a loss in the playoffs for the Lakers to take Denver seriously, which is spot on. The Denver series was about the least competitive six game series you can have. But this season seems different. The Nuggets are deeper, and have been more impressive in their wins over LA, even if they were in the regular season.

The Lakers can coast as long as they want as long they turn it on when April comes around. Still, you have to wonder, yet again, about the mental intensity of the team if they sleepwalk their way through every game with a contending team.

Then you remember this team got taken to the woodshed in three games against the Rockets (two without Yao) and still won the title. This isn’t a dominant team. And that ring on their finger means they’ve earned the right to dismiss anyone they want for now.

  1. j. d. hastings - Feb 27, 2010 at 7:48 PM

    While, as a Laker fan, I do worry about the Lakers’ attitude towards Denver- and feel that Denver could win a 7 game series whether LA takes them seriously or not- I worry a lot more about how that attitude shows on the court than in what they say.
    I take the quotes from each these last two posts as not being much to get worked up over. These are public comments from people on a team. They will obviously advocate their chosen position over saying God’s objective truth. The Lakers HAVE to tell themselves that the last 2 beat downs were nothing special, and Phil Jackson’s needling has never been about internal consistency (check everything he’s ever said about officiating and shaq before, during and after he’s coached him). It’s smarmy, but like an attorney, he’s doing his job.
    You’re doing your job calling BS when you see it too, but I don’t think any of us really expect anybody in sports to act otherwise. Which is what makes the occasional exception, like Popovich, so enjoyable.
    so Long as the Lakers treat the Nuggets respectfully without showing them up on the court I’m not nearly so worried about what they say than about the talent of the Nuggets.

  2. MT - Feb 27, 2010 at 9:42 PM

    Another no-talent hack making a living off of dragging in Laker fans with misleading headlines only to ambush them with unprofessional bias. Look over your writing the next time “Matt”, and try to portray the flaws in each teams outlook equally. Not that I don’t understand you’re obviously playing the antagonist for hits (like a million other posers who have faded into the blog ethers); in the long run basing your “career” on such a singular schtick won’t succeed. Who do you think you are, the next Hollinger, or Snapper Jones? Remember his Laker hating as they ran off three championships in his face? “They gonna lose to Portland. They gonna lose to Sactown. They gonna lose to etc.” You’re nothing special if this is your angle. Last time I click on anything you write – you duped me once, shame on you.

  3. Ron - Feb 28, 2010 at 2:37 AM

    I think you mean “Andrew Bynum” and not “Josh Powell” because I didn’t see Josh being quoted anywhere in that story, but Bynum was saying something about it being a statement game for the Lakers.
    I think as a matter of professional courtesy the Lakers should be giving the Nuggets props. Its true that the Nuggets were crazy on fire in the February 5 game, but the Lakers had plenty of opportunities to step up their defense in that game and apparently decided it was too much of a hassle.
    Your last statement is spot-on. The Lakers have earned the right to say whatever they want to say. And in a seven-game series between the two, the Lakers come away winners again. There is just too much talent on one team, and too much emotion on the other one.
    MT, you are certainly right about Matt on his previous posting. (See my responses.) I will give Matt the benefit of the doubt on this one. He is bringing up legitimate points on the Lakers here.

  4. dave in hillsboro - Feb 28, 2010 at 2:46 PM

    Also, this is a baseless statement: “The Denver series was about the least competitive six game series you can have.”
    That series was very competitive. The first, second, third and fifth games were close, with dramatic endings that are not reflected in the final score. The Nuggets blew the Lakers out in game four, but the game was relatively close until the fourth quarter, in which the Nuggets scored 43 points. In game six, the Nuggets did get their butts kicked pretty badly, but that was really the only game that was not competitive. I know this because I watched all of those games more than once, whereas it appears Mr. Moore merely looked at the box scores.
    I can think of one six game series that was actually less competitive than the 2009 Western Conference Finals, and yet it was still very competitive and great basketball. I’m referring to the ’98 NBA Finals, in which the Jazz lost game 3 by 42 points. Equally serviceable as an example would be the 2008 Finals, where the Lakers notoriously lost game six by 39 points. And yet the 2008 finals were extremely competitive, just as were the 2009 Western Conference Finals.

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