5 Things

Dominating win in a place any kind of win is hard to come by. The Lakers are bringing a focus and intensity that has proven difficult for the opposition to match on most nights. Rainy day here in SoCal so that means we’re in a Miles Davis kind of mood.
Let’s dig in.

1) No answer for Anthony Davis. The Trailblazers threw all they could at AD and he romped right on through Portland anyhow. He scored from all over the floor, got to the line and again led the charge on defense. One of my favorite things about Davis, and this season’s Lakers in general, is the level of steadiness and poise he shows. Makes an amazing play, moves on to the next one. Highlight-worthy ally-oop dunk, gets back down and plays defense. Cans a tough three, I’ve done that a 1,000,000 times let’s focus on the game. Not that I mind antics and celebrations but there’s also something to be said for playing it on the cool.

2) Steady bench. Led by Kyle Kuzma and Rajon Rondo the Laker bench again turned in a stellar performance. They don’t break from the script or deviate from the game plan. They play defense at a high level. They put in work and play the game the right way. There’s often a solid contribution or three from every player that gets floor time. They’re not showy and they show you what comes from just playing hard. Love what this group of guys is accomplishing along with our superstars. In my opinion, the great as of yet unheralded story in the NBA.

3) Melo and LeBron balling together. I honestly couldn’t be happier for Carmelo Anthony. I had thought there was a pretty good chance he’d up a Laker this summer, didn’t happen and he did his ‘NBA limbo’ thing for a too long for a guy with that much talent and skill. He ain’t that old, either. If Portland makes the playoffs it will be because they smartly culled Anthony from the hinterlands of the NBA free agent pool. Special game for both men as they have been playing with or against each other since the century turned.

4) Kyle Kuzma. I know I already mentioned the bench. But Kuz had a real solid game last night, he’s taken a lot of heat and for everything about this team I think it bears remembering this is his 3rd season. In my opinion a young player finds his NBA groove somewhere between his 3rd and 5th seasons. Can be later, can be earlier but often it seems to fall into that range. Kuzma had an odd summer, suffered his first serious injury, missed a lot of camp reps and has been playing himself into shape. I think it safe to say we all hope he takes some steps forward both in terms of his game and work ethic but he’s also a solid NBA talent. Keep on balling, Kyle, and keep on working hard. The fame stuff will be there forever if you win it all, just ask Kendrick Perkins.

5) Stay healthy. With the unfortunate injury to Rodney Hood and Rondo’s hamstring acting up it seems like a good time to offer up a prayer to the NBA Lords of Health and Good Fortune. There’s no knowing when a bad injury can derail a season and so let’s hope Rondo comes back quickly and that Mr. Hood can be back on the court within a year or so. Best wishes from Laker fans to Rodney Hood.