Pau Gasol not-so-subtly called out Kobe Bryant for taking too many shots down the stretch. (Dime)
“Sometimes we get a little stagnant and we don’t form our offense,” Lamar Odom said yesterday. Pau Gasol added, “Sometimes we do get away from getting the ball in the post and attacking the team from there. Sometimes we do; we tend to do that pretty often. Sometimes it’s good, some times, most times, I don’t think it helps a lot, especially when we have been as effective and both of our bigs are shooting over 57 percent in the whole playoffs. So you’ve got to make a conscious effort on getting the ball in there.”
One positive the Celtics took away from Game 3 is that Kobe still hasn’t figured out Tom Thibodeau’s defense. 10-29 shooting? That’s unsightly. And most of those shots were miserable ones with defenders all up in his mug. Kobe will hit some of those shots (just ask Tony Allen, who saw Kobe hit a ridiculous three after Allen jumped at a shot fake), but the Celtics will live with Kobe abandoning the offense and firing ill-advised shots… especially with the dominance the Lakers low-post game has shown so far. (By the way, if you really do want to talk to Tony Allen about Kobe hitting tough shots you might have to wait a little while: TA still hasn’t landed from when he jumped for that shot fake.)
Of course, Kobe could always get hot and go wild even with defenders’ hands in his eyeballs. That’s just Kobe. But it’s a risk the Celtics have to take. Make him take tough shots and live with the results. And if he hits the tough shots, DON’T LAUGH! There’s nothing funny about Kobe hitting shots against your team, even ridiculous shots in Grant Hill’s face.
Hold on, hold on. Did I say Gasol called out Kobe? I meant to say he called out Fisher. That stocky, flopping, dirty-defending, ball-hogging son-of-a-bitch was the one taking all the crunch-time shots yesterday, right? (Can’t you see that I still have a whole lot of hostility? That’s what happens when one of my least-favorite players gets completely out of character and defeats the Celtics by taking over an NBA Finals game. If the Celtics have 1/10 of my anger, the Lakers will not even come close to winning Game 4.)