Kobe Bryant returned on Sunday night after missing about 8 months of ball due to an Achilles injury. The Raptors were without Rudy Gay who just got traded to Sacramento. The Lakers, well they were without an inside presence. And so they lost.
Here are the cons of the night: Pau Gasol sucked. He was muscles around, couldn’t get a shot off, and his body language was horrible. I’m glad this is his last year in purple and gold. He also made Amir Johnson of the Raptors look like Bill Russell. Johnson finished with 32 points and 10 rebounds. Another problem is Robert Sacre. Great Mark Madsenesque cheerleader, but this guy shouldn’t be getting any minutes at this level, let alone starting for the LAKERS?!?!?! They need to start Shawne Williams. At least he opens up the floor and can hit a 3. One more problem for those Lakers’ guards,, fouling jump shooters is a no-no. Basketball 101…
As for Kobe, looked a bit rustier than I expected. Too many turnovers (8) and was trying a little too hard to be a distributor. Seems like he also lost a step and the quickness is not there anymore. I’ve gonna wait ’till I pass judgment on him but I expected more than 9 points from him.
Pros: The Lakers bench, they finally have one. Nick Young and Jodie Meeks are instant offense. Jordan Hill is a hustler. I just don’t know why he can’t develop some post moves. Xavier Henry seems a little meatheady but 17 points in 14 minutes… D’Antoni’s gotta find a way to put him in the game. This team is not a contender for the finals. IF they make the playoffs, they will get swept in the first round. But at the very least, it makes the rest of the season a bit more interesting. I gotta admit though, they played a lot better with Kobester on the bench… I’m just saying… Makes you think about that 2 year extension.