In any sport (save bog-snorkeling perhaps), things can turn on a dime. For the Lakers, a pretty poor month of December begat a ragged start to the New Year. Bad moon on the rise, Kobe calling out teammates, Jackson taking his own odd-angled shots (zen marble-mouth) and Ron reacting in his inimitable way to Phil’s motivational soapbox. You can touch a type-key blindly and find a post that perfectly breaks down some aspect of the game but the game’s not played by writers, it’s played by guys who’ve been doing it all of their still young lives and it’s ingrained more deeply than most of us can ever know. X’s & O’s aren’t necessarily going to bring you out of a skid, there’s a witches’ brew of real time moments and combined chemistries, a team finds its way for reasons unknown and we don’t need no stinkin’ critics, you blink an eye and don’t make it to your feed on time and the Spurs lose a couple and the Lakers win a couple and suddenly the gap’s not as wide. Make gone the absurdities and Rube Goldberg diagrams, the team’s back and playing with purpose.
The rest of the month bodes well for a team getting it back together, 8 games at home, 4 on the road, a few good teams but not what you’d call a tough schedule. Phil Jackson supposedly likes to compartmentalize, five games at a time. Good enough for me. Tonight we play New Orleans again (we demolished them last week), New York will probably give us a game on Sunday, Cleveland could theoretically be a trap just because they’re so plain bad. A quick jaunt up to Golden State on a back-to-back but the one I’m really looking forward to is the Nets at Staples Center on Friday the 14th. The return of a couple guys who didn’t much like each other in L.A. but find themselves ironically linked once more on one of the league’s worst
When your main stomping ground’s a particular team, It’s usually an easy call to link specific blogs and sites. They will after all, blanket the day’s source material and fit conveniently into a narrative. Still, there’s so much good stuff out there and spending lost hours in the maze reveals so many read-worthy items, sometimes closely related to whatever’s currently on the menu or perhaps tangential but still tasty. I don’t even know what I’m writing half the time by the way.
Breene Murphy examines the horror that is Sterling in the ClipperBlog.
Colin Stephenson writes about Sasha in the Star-Ledger.
Pick and Scroll features a pretty great Haiku Recap.
The guys at A Wolf Among Wolves write incredibly good stuff, all the time.
48 Minutes of Hell rolls the Spurs eclectic draft philosophy into a Pacers preview.
Yes, it's Lakers-centic but just the same, check out today's Lazenby's HoopsHype Blog.
Okay, it took me twice as long to post these links as it actually did to read them. Stupid slow laptop. I'm gonna have some lunch now 'cause I'm feeling really cranky.