Monday, June 9, 2008

Too Many Europeans?

OK, what is the Lakers' problem?

They have the best coach in the game and the best player in the game and at one point last night they were down by more than 20 points! I don't care how close the final score made things seem, the Lakers got trounced on last night.

I will say that Kobe is not getting MVP treatment and that is just plain wrong on that part of the refs considering the tradition of MVPs getting choice calls in the playoffs -- especially in the Finals.

But, even with the shady calls and Boston's incredible defense, there is still one factor that to me stands out more than anything else in this series: the Lakers have too many Europeans on the team.

Now while the Euros can shoot the rock with the best of them, and even though Gasol did posterize Garnett last night (see photo at left), over all these Euros on the Lakers are weak and meek and finesse players when the Finals are all about getting down and dirty and playing rough.

And that is something that these Euros for the Lakers obviously cannot sustain.

From Gasol to Vujacic to Radmonovic and even to Turiaf, they're just not getting it done. Meanwhile Boston doesn't have one single European on their roster, instead going with nothing but African-American talent (Scot Pollard isn't dressing for the Finals). The Celtics are up 2-0 in this best of 7 series. Coincidence? We shall see what happens in L. A.

There's still a chance of my prediction coming true and the Lakers winning in 6 if they can find a way to play consistent, hard-nosed defense.

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