This summation of the NBA Season, thus far, is broken into three sections: the Lakers, the Heat (3-0) and then the Bulls (1-1). [And I’ve added a little bonus of random notes at the end, but act surprised when it happens.]
The Los Angeles Lakers had a rough start, and I’d thought I would have to call their fans off the ledge if they lost to the Jazz (now 0-2), but they emerged victorious, so all is well. Gasol had 5 blocks in the 25-point victory; therefore, it must really be looking good going into the game tonight, but it only gets better.
After the schedules came out, I noticed something: The Lakers played three games in three nights. Losing two-out-of-three regular-season games sounds even less significant when this little nugget surfaces as well: Every team that beat the Lakers this season lost the following time they played basketball. The Kings (1-1) beat LA in their home opener—then they lost to Portland (2-0); the Bulls, after beating the Lake Show on Christmas in dramatic fashion—followed that with a defeat in Oakland by the Warriors (2-1).
Another positive is that yesterday, while LAL was recuperating in preparation for tonight’s game, and their up-coming home-and-home with Denver (2-0) over the weekend, Golden State registered a 14-point win playing the Knicks. Even the Curry-less Warriors could handle New York, so LAL should be at .500 following this evening.
The Miami Heat are undefeated, but not all thanks to LeBron. If you didn’t realize Wade as greater than LeBron, just look at who took the game-winning shot against the Bobcats (1-1) last night. Or, instead of looking out how Super Bron Bron fills every column of the stat sheet, take a gander at Bosh’s numbers versus the Celtics (0-3); that man’s a silent destroyer, and his 18 & 11, on 8-for-11 shooting, should’ve gotten a lot more attention.
No worries, however. For if the Heat aren’t careful, they could give the T-Wolves (0-2) their first victory on Friday when they face each other. Minnesota’s only going to get better, yet K-Love’s 31 & 20 versus the Bucks (1-1)—along with Ricky Rubio’s four dimes and three thefts, alongside his six points, all in limited time on the floor—is scary enough.
The Chicago Bulls proved worthy of being given Christmas Day coverage in how they beat the Lakers, for it was a sign of things to come. Their coaching, and conditioning, and pacing is crazy; they will wait you out, and then pounce. Everything else I have on this team, in the negative, has been said.
Random Notes—New Orleans (2-0) gave Boston their third lose in as many games, showing that the Celtics really miss Paul Pierce; Phoenix (0-2) got destroyed by Philly (1-1), continuing the down-ward spiral of the Suns; LAC (1-1) lost to the San Antonio (2-0), why won’t the Spurs go away?; and Memphis (0-2) refused to lay down in their home opener facing OKC, and they lost their starting point guard early—yet they still hung in there to keep it close.
The NBA’s back, so buckle up; this could get bumpy…