The NBA in LA: Week of March 12th, 2012
There is already a lot going on in the the Los Angeles basketball community this week; with the Lakers winning an exciting game against Memphis last night, the Clippers continuing to struggle, and the trade talks buzzing with the March 15th deadline less than a half day away.
Last night, the Lakeshow managed to pull out a 116-111 win over the Grizzlies in double overtime. The Lakers chemistry just got better over the course of the game, as they overcame a 17 point Memphis lead to eventually tie the game and force OT. Probably the most notable story from the game was the night Andrew Bynum had. The 24-year old 7-foot Bynum finished with 37 points and 16 rebounds, including a few clutch baskets in the late part of the game that helped lead the team to victory. It has certainly seemed like the big man has turned the corner in how productive he can be, averaging over 26 points and 12 rebounds in his last 5 games. I’d say Bynum’s play as of late makes a compelling argument not to trade him for Dwight Howard. But what do I know?
Hoping to improve their poor 8-14 road record, the Lakers face the New Orleans Hornets tonight in New Orleans.
The other half of Los Angeles basketball, the Clippers, has had some trouble lately. Cliptown has dropped 8 of their last 12, falling two games behind the Lakers for first place in the division. Chris Paul has been very vocal in the media about the team making no excuses and just needing to go out there an execute. Paul, who had been averaging over 25 points per game in the last five games, had just 14 points in their lost against the Celtics at Staples Center on Monday.
The Clippers hope to put their 3-game losing streak to rest with a win against the Hawks tonight in LA.
It will be interesting to see how both teams play tonight in light of the trade deadline tomorrow. There have been discussions in the media this week of the Bulls looking to acquire Gasol from the Lakers. Apparently, the Bulls have switched their focus from Dwight Howard to Gasol, after Howard has made it clear from the beginning he doesn’t want to play in Chicago. The Lakers have already said numerous times that they need a legit star in return to even entertain the idea of trading for Pau. It’s obvious they need a point guard but it’s not certain that the caliber of player they would want for Gasol is even available.
Neil Olshey, Clippers’ Vice President of Basketball Operations, made it apparent this week that the Clippers will not make a move before the deadline and any help the team gets "will come from the inside."
Only time, (well maybe just another few hours), will tell.
Questions or comments?? Get at me hoopsvibers!
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