By Josh Kramer
The opening round brought the city of Los Angeles to a fever pitch. Round two will bring heartbreak. In a little over a week, people will be referring to Los Angeles as “Heartbreak City,” rather than ”Basketball Central.” Even if you are not a fan of the Lakers or the Clippers, you have to admit that an all LA Western Conference Finals showdown would be special. “Lob City” versus the Kobe Bryant Show. What could be better than that?
Unfortunately, I am going to go out on a limb and say that it isn’t going to happen. This is not the same Lakers team that made three consecutive finals appearances from 2008 to 2010. They are full of flaws, lacking the effort and determination to lay it all on the line every night. The Clippers are not only tired and injury riddled, they are overmatched against a very experienced and well coached San Antonio team. Gregg Popovich is arguably the best in the business for a reason.
Kobe Bryant will have to play out of this world for LA to stretch this series more than five games. The Nuggets made the Lakers look like they were standing still at times during the opening round. What do you think the Thunder are going to do? Not to mention the Thunder are much bigger inside than the Nuggets with Ibaka and a now healthy Perkins. I tip my hat to the Clippers on taking down a very good Grizzlies team. But the Spurs are even better than Memphis. Plus, both of the star players on the Clippers are currently struggling with various injuries.
It has been a great year for Los Angeles in terms of NBA basketball. As a consolation prize though, the Kings appear unstoppable in terms of the NHL and the Dodgers currently boast the best record in the National League. In terms of basketball though, Los Angeles should start thinking about the 2012/2013 season. Continue reading