Did Everyone Count Out The Wrong Los Angeles Team?
After the NBA finally got through the lockout and planned for a shortened season, things happened in the city of Los Angeles that had everyone thinking that there was a new show in town. It was already apparent that Blake Griffin had brought the other Los Angeles team some much needed excitement, but when the trade brought lauded point guard Chris Paul to town, everything changed. Not only did the Clippers get better with their new “Lob City” moniker, but most began talking about NBA title aspirations before the season began.
The 66-game lockout-shortened season didn’t bode well for the Los Angeles Lakers, who were shafted by David Stern and the owners when they attempted to land Chris Paul in a trade days before the Clippers landed him. Not only did the Clippers get better, but most thought the idea of the aging Lakers having to play back-to-back-to-back games would take a toll on Kobe Bryant, who is in his 16th season. Aside from that, Bryant was dealing with an injured wrist and finger.
But there’s a reason why we play the games.
Somehow we forgot that this is Kobe Bryant we’re talking about. Just in case we forgot, Bryant and the Lakers have reminded us who the real attraction in Los Angeles is. After 12 games, the Lakers stand at 8-4 and are perched atop the Pacific Division with the Clippers sitting at 5-3 and trailing by a game. Sure, it’s still early, but the recent outbursts by Andrew Bynum and Kobe Bryant have put the league on notice. Despite being hobbled with injuries, Bynum has showcased remarkable improvement, averaging a whopping 14.6 rebounds to go along with 17.9 points. Meanwhile, Bryant has torn into defenses by averaging 29.5 points per game while ripping the Suns for 48 points and the Jazz for 40.
Here we were wondering aloud if the Lakers would be a force to be reckoned with.
The Clippers still have time to gain their bearings as the Paul-Griffin show is just getting its legs. We’re still not sure if the Lakers can keep up this momentum as the season wears on. But perhaps everyone jumped the gun by handing the Clippers the keys to the city before they played a single game.
Didn’t we just do this with the Philadelphia Eagles? We see where that went.