What the Los Angeles Lakers saidand the
after Game 3.
Coach Rick Carlisle
(On the 4th) "It was a slugfest game, we were down eight, with six or eight minutes left, but we hung in there and kept battling. Dirk Nowitzki made it happen. Just about everything that happened down the stretch was a direct result of him either scoring the ball or making a play to get somebody a shot or make a pass for an assist for a three or a two or whatever it was.
(On Homecourt) "You got to give our crowd a lot of credit. It was every bit as loud as it was in Portland the other day, and that was a difference maker."
(On Peja Stojakovic) "The key to the game, aside from Dirk being the guy who facilitated everything on offense, was that Peja did a great job on Lamar Odom the last six or seven minutes. As great as Kobe Bryant is, and he is un-guardable, Odom is right there with him as one of the most difficult matchups in all of basketball, because of his versatility, his size, length, skill. We needed Peja's shooting out there, but the job he did defensively was equally important."
(On what this postseason means to Nowitzki and Terry) "It's not just those two guys, everybody is focused. We're all trying to do something that we have never done, so the focus, the determination, the discipline, and all those things, is crucial. Dirk is one of the all-time greats, there's no doubt about that, but we're going for the ring and that's the one thing he hasn't done in his career, and he's one step closer, but we have a long way to go, and getting one more game from Los Angeles is going to be a lot of hard work, and we're going to have to stay humble and stay hungry.
(On this game, pre-4th) "I actually felt like we had some decent looks all game long, but we just couldn’t make enough. Then we were down eight there in the fourth, but I’m proud of how the team responded to that hole we were in."
(On how confident the Mavs are right now) "It's great we just didn't panic early when they (Lakers) were going inside all night. They were up there eight in the 4th quarter and we stuck with it. We said in the huddle that we keep fighting, keep plugging away and finally got some stops and got some shots to fall on the offensive end and that was big."
(How do you close of the series against the two-time defending champs?) "We've got to keep attacking on the offensive end and keep them off balance on the defensive end by attacking at all angles. We've got to keep shooting the ball well and defensively just keep battling and keep winning the rebounding game."
(On the crowd) "The 'blue-out' was great, it was great to see. The building was as loud as I've ever heard it. That was great. They pushed us forward there in the fourth. And when we made shots there and tied the game and took the lead it was a madhouse."
(On keeping the momentum going on Sunday) "We've just got to go for it. We're not good enough to coast or relax or anything. We've got to go for it on Sunday with the same hype from the crowd."
(On the Lakers) "We’re playing against the best. I mean, they’re the two-time defending champions. And if you want to beat the best you’ve gotta bring the best. I think we’re all coming together and playing on a higher level than we did in the regular season. They have the heart of a champion, of a back-to-back champ, so you don’t ever want to give a champion life. They have a lot of pride over there in that locker room. We've got to take it. They're not going to give it to us."
(On defending Kobe) "You’re not going to get me to say I shut him down. So you guys can ask however many questions so many different ways and you can do it in a different language. I didn’t shut him down. I just got in his way and I had a lot of help."
(On Peja's fourth) "That’s what shooters do," Kidd said, "and he’s one of the best."
(On the Lakers still thinking of themselves as the better team) "They're still the champs until we knock them off. They're the champions, we're still the underdogs."
(On Kidd defending Kobe) "I can’t even explain that one. Like the way he’s moving and denying the ball and getting under him, I mean, it’s incredible. I’m watching him and most of the time I’m thinking about helping him and I’m looking and looking over there, and he’s doing a great job."
(On Peja's early Airball) "I said, ‘That’s not going to happen again. Every time he shoots it, I think it’s going in. I’ve seen it happen over and over again."
(On the Series) "Just taking it one game at a time. We’ve been fortunate to get this 3-0 lead. Until it’s 4-0, I’m not going to count them out. I don’t want to put any words in their mouths. I’m not sure how they’re feeling right now. I just know how we’re feeling. We feel like we’ve got to seize the moment. We’ve got a great opportunity, and we’ve got to close it."
(On Jason Kidd's defense against Kobe) "He’s just a good defender, man. He knows how to play the game. He has great instincts to go along with good physical abilities. And he leaves it all out there."
(On the Lakers losing vs getting beat) "Whether you beat yourself or the other team beats you, you still get an L. We're not worried about that."
(On starting 1-5) "In the first half, I wasn’t able to make any shots. It was pretty good looks, and kept getting those looks. I just kept being aggressive. Fortunately, the shots went in. You try not to think about the missed shots. You’re always hoping the next shot is the best shot."
(On his role) "I just have to continue to be aggressive on the offensive end and I think that was the key tonight for all of us because they were doubling Dirk from the very beginning so we had to relieve the pressure. When we make a few shots that opens up everything for him Dirk and it helps him get to the basket and draw fouls and he knocked down most of his jump shots."
(On the Defense) "They Lakers started with a big lineup tonight and we did a pretty good job against that lineup in the second half and that lineup gave us some problems on the boards but we stuck with it and stuck with the game plan. Defensive rebounding was a key for us and just sticking with the game plan on offense and being aggressive."
(On the 4th Q Defense) "When they established their low post presence with that long lineup early in the game they were getting everything in the paint which opens up the outside shooting and that's dangerous because they are very skilled in the paint, but in the 4th quarter we did a pretty good job defensively and making them shoot over us and take tough shots and it worked."
Coach Phil Jackson
(On the Game) "Again, as in Game 1, they finished better than we did. That was the difference in the ball game. They got to the foul line in the second half and we didn't. They made some threes in the fourth quarter and we didn't. They deserved to win and we didn't."
(On being animated during timeouts) "I thought we were spending too much energy instead of just playing the game and just playing through things."
(On hitting Pau in the chest) "He grabbed the ball in the half court and wasn't aware that he was holding it in the position we always ask him not to put it in and Terry took it from behind and went down and got a layup. I was just making sure he understood he needed to take care of the basketball in those sequences."
(On getting a full, solid game from Pau the next game) "Well he's been through enough playoffs games to know the deal that you can come back and play games. Tonight Andrew was the guy that again in the first half, the strength of our ball club. We wanted to take advantage of that, so Pau didn't have that many opportunities. And tonight, I'm sure he'd like to have a couple of them back at the end of the game."
(On going down 3-0) "Well we're disappointed. We felt like Games 1 and 3 we controlled the pace of the game, but just couldn't finish the game. They were better finishing the games out than we were, so that's a big disappointment to us. But we still believe we're going to win the next game, and we'll go from them."
(On getting Artest back) "Yeah, we can use Ron. We hope he's back playing his game. One of the things tonight that hurt us was the rotation to the three point line covering that. It's tough for our bigger guys. Lamar had seven opportunities, and some of our other guys had opportunities, but they didn't get out to cover that line."
(What do you tell you team being down 3-0) "We just said that we didn't finish the game well, that we're disappointed in our ability to cover the line. That we double-teamed Nowitzki ineffectively and irrationally a couple of times at the end of the game, which is something we don't want to do. He matched up with Gasol on him. If we come back and play the same game we're going to win another game. We played too well to lose, is what I said."
(On the Series) "I might be sick in the head or crazy because I still think we're gonna win the series. I might be ...Nuts. But i'm not.... y'know. Win on Sunday, go back home and see if they can win in L.A."
(On the Game) "We played well. Well enough to win it. Just down the stretch of the game, we made some of the dumbest defensive mistakes I've seen us make all year."
(On defending the Mavs) "We did ok in containing the Shooters until the 4th Quarter. [Then] you know, whe let them go nuts."
(What happened in the last 5 minutes tonight?) "Same thing that happened when we were up 16 at home."
(Is it possible that in this day and time that the Mavs better than you guys?) "It's how we're playing; it's how the games are ending."
(So are they beating you or are you throwing them away?) "I don't know. I mean a real man can admit defeat when you lose. Whatever we did, we did it wrong enough to wind up losing the game. We just can't find a way to pull one out."
(Since you've been in LA you haven't been in a sweep – how do you avoid one?) "Just find a way to close out a game."
(Talk about you execution at the end of the game and how you guys are feeling) "Probably shocked a little bit. That last play, I think we were down 2, I didn't get where I wanted to get on the court. I ended up taking turnaround jumper and I felt confident but I left it short. Just our execution toward the end of the game, like reading who has the advantage, where to get them the ball. Sometimes it's just hard for me to understand how we find ourselves in a game like that and we don't know how to use each other's strengths. We've been through it so many times, but we're so stubborn with each other, and it caught up to us."
(On losing the lead in the 4th quarter) "It's tough, man. We played hard and we just gave it away at the end. Up 7 with 8 minutes to go and let them hit two threes. Come down and we didn't do anything offensively. Then we had – they say 3 and out in baseball, we had about 5 and out. It's tough."
(On what broke down) "Offense, we didn't get a basket there at the end in the last 3 minutes. The last 5 possessions were terrible."
(On what changed after being up 7 with 5 minutes to go) "It was 5, yeah, that's crazy. That's what I'm saying, offensively we had about 5 bad possessions straight."
(Did you guys do anything differently or did they make an adjustment) "We didn't get into our offense. Let's see, we started, we went out of context, again. I know PJ's probably going to say something about it, so we'll have to adjust it."
(You had a great game going individually; did they change their defense to keep you from getting the ball in the post?) "We stopped going there, but it's not only one person that wins. It's the triangle offense; we're supposed to do it together and tonight we didn't at the end."
(You guys historically win these close games in the past few years – you've lost 2 in one series, why is that?) "Coming down at the end of the game and just not being prepared and not running what we've got to. We lost the ball in game one, and we lost the ball down the stretch this game. And we had 5 offensive possessions where it resulted in fast breaks for them."
(You had some success defending Dirk in the first half; he kind of got going late, how do you stop him?) "Well tonight I think the refs bailed him out on a call on the baseline, but he had a great game. I said to him that he was going to have to keep making shots over the top and he did. So, that's 32 points. He did what he was supposed to do."
(On if the Mavs are better) "No, for the simple fact they are capitalizing on what we’re not doing right. We’re messing up, we’re beating ourselves and we’re losing games and losing leads and we’re giving it to them because we’re not doing what we’re supposed to be doing. You've got to give them credit for capitalizing off it and making shots, but it's just the simple fact that we’re not doing what were supposed to be doing."
Hitting on Pau
MMB | Catcap
And then, without any warning at all, the mentality changed, the switch flipped, and the deficit evaporated. Triggered by the Mavericks, Kobe himself ignited. However, as the quarter drew on, Kobe by himself just could not match Mavericks' teamwork and share-the-ball philosophy offense. And in the end, he just could not match Dirk.
Silver Screen and Roll Almost over
this team has spent all season pooping away games in crunch time, so when the Mavs outscored the Lakers 17 to 5 over the game's final 10 possessions to win going away, 98 to 92, it was less a surprise than a depressing confirmation of the flaws that have transformed the soon-to-be-ex champs into second round also-rans.
In the middle periods the Lake Show had the Mavs locked down. The rotations were good, guys were forcing turnovers, and there weren't too many shooters left unmarked. But the first and fourth quarters were just so, so ugly. I can't even count the number of times Dirk or Peja or Terry were allowed to fire away unchallenged from behind the arc. The Mavs knew that if they just kept moving the ball, at some point the Lakers would get caught out of position. They look like they've got this Laker defense straight-up solved.
Dirk finished with 32 points on only 20 shots (including free-throw possessions). On the whole I thought the defense of Gasol and Odom on him wasn't that bad. Dirk's simply playing at an all-universe level right now, and I'm not sure anyone would be able to slow him down. Terry, with 23 points, had a fantastic game. Peja had 15 and is finally getting his revenge on the Lakers almost a decade after airballing a three-point attempt at the end of Game Seven in the 2002 Western Conference Finals.
Still, Pau's been consistently subpar in these playoffs. It's not like everyone else has been at the top of their games - aside from Kobe and Drew, nobody's been earning their paychecks - but Pau's the $19 million man who's counted on to go toe-to-toe with Nowitzki. The only way Dirk could be owning him any harder is if he broke into Pau's car, stole the Creedence tapes and used the backseat as a toilet.
NBA.com It's the Mavs
The Lakers will swear it was them. They gave this one away, same way they did Game 1. But that's not the case.
The Mavericks' 42-15 scoring edge from the bench in Game 3 is what did it. That combined 60-20 scoring edge from the 3-point line and the free throw line is the difference.
This is no longer about the Lakers and their issues, fatigue, drama and intrigue.
It's all about the Mavericks.
ESPN Dime Time
The day began with Bryant pulling Jackson aside and trying to convince his Zen-loving coach that their 2-0 deficit after dropping the first two games at home and the resulting degree of difficulty they now faced was "kind of the way your last season should be." The evening ended with Bryant, almost chuckling at himself at the interview podium, insisting that he still thinks "we're gonna win this series" but acknowledging that he "might be sick in the head."
Yet what stuck with you, more than any of the words, was the image of Bryant walking off the floor alone, strides ahead of any other Laker, after he airballed a futile, running, one-handed 3-pointer at the final buzzer.
ESPN LA Repeating
Hate to go all Aristotle on a team that already has enough Zen principles floating around in its head, but as the Greek philosopher said, "We are what we repeatedly do."
What the Lakers have done time and time again is fall short of their smaller goals.
It's no surprise that their biggest wish -- a three-peat title -- is being lost as well.
Land o' At the buzzer
They played hard. And at times, they played well. But certainly not for 48 minutes or anything close, and that's mandatory when you're down 0-2 and playing in someone else's house.
DAL 5-7 at the Rim, LAL 19-28. Clogging the paint worked for LA.... to the extent of 12 Threes on 29 Attempts...
The Dallas Mavericks stared adversity in the face, and made adversity blink as they took a commanding (and stunning!) 3-0 series lead over the two-tme defending champion Los Angeles Lakers...
*Dallas has so many three-point weapons that the Lakers just can't rotate to cover them all. Hitting treys down the stretch were Dirk Nowitzki, Peja Stojakovich (2), and Jason Terry. For the game, Dallas had a massive 12-3 edge from behind the arc, meaning 36-9 on the scoreboard. What had been an important edge in the first two games became a category blowout tonight.
An advanced Boxscore at Arturo
Terry and Dirk layed down the Law. Only Blake showed up for LA. What happened to the heart of a champion?
Hey Laker Fans, here’s a crazy idea:
Pretty crazy right?
Smackdown lead here I come!
Forum Blue & Gold Rollercoaster at it's low Point
However, in the 2nd half and especially in the 4th quarter, the Mavs started to take advantage of Odom being a PF playing SF. Rather than leave the ineffective Shawn Marion on the floor, the Mavs went to Peja to space the floor. The Mavs then did a great job of isolating Dirk and Terry so that they could attack the Laker defense. This attacking preyed on Odom’s penchant for helping off his man and it left Peja open for shots that he knocked down to close the gap. After the Mavs were able to get the game close, they then continued their masterful run of top notch execution to stave off the Lakers.
The Point Forward Credit Dallas
Later. Surely. Wait, it's Weekend? Nevermind.
Nothing. I understand the Games have been late, but really? Three games and not one BTB?
at Dallas 98, L.A. Lakers 92 (Dallas leads 3-0)
Offensive Ratings: Dallas 119.0, L.A. Lakers 111.2
After falling behind 2-0 in the best-of-seven series, the Lakers made sweeping changes. For three and a half quarters, it appeared that strategy and a renewed sense of urgency would allow the Lakers to get back in the series. During the final six minutes, however, it became clear that the Lakers had in fact gone too far in the opposite direction, which cost them as the Mavericks came from behind to win 98-92 and take a commanding 3-0 lead in this series.
What proved to be the crucial adjustment was in the way the Lakers defended Dallas' lethal pick-and-roll game.
Every adjustment means giving something else up, and by helping more aggressively, the Lakers surrendered open shots from beyond the arc on the weak side.
During the fourth quarter and all night, the Lakers' offense wasn't bad. It simply wasn't good enough to keep up with Dallas on a night where the Lakers overcompensated for the weaknesses that had put them in a hole in this series.
NBAPlaybook Not yet
But a possibility.
Kobe Bryant was rightfully frustrated afterward, talking about the Lakers’ mistakes; there were plenty. But Dallas is forcing them. This is about Dallas doing the things a contender does and the Lakers being unable to this year.
When the Lakers led by eight in the fourth quarter, Dallas started to rain threes down — the Mavs shot 60 percent in the fourth quarter. It was not the two-time defending champs, it was Dallas that closed.
The Laker offense performed well — perhaps even well enough to win — but no one in this series can even attempt to guard Dirk Nowitzki effectively, nor defend the Mavs on the whole. Dallas has executed relentlessly on offense in this series. All of the blown pick-and-roll coverage, the inability to cover the corner man after a swing pass, the confusion in rotation? That’s all coming because the Mavs are pressing precisely the right buttons to make the Laker defense squirm. Dallas has the personnel and the ball movement necessary to really create problems for L.A.’s D, independent of the Lakers’ effort or execution. Dallas’ offense is just rolling right now because the ball-handlers continue to make smart decisions and those moving off the ball are cutting hard. The Lakers are a step behind, rotating late and getting stuck in coverage, and frankly incapable of keeping up with the extra pass at this point. That final swing, kick-out, or dump-down is what has broken the Lakers’ backs in this series, and it should offer Rick Carlisle such sweet relief to see his team working and working and working through every possession while the opponents share looks of exasperation.
Haywood bricked nil of [nada] from the line. Why oh why don't you chop that wood,
PortlandLakers? He is now 4-17 on FTs in 10 games. Celebration for our third-best Center, Beaches! [nsfw]
Dirk missed zero FTs, Kidd, Chandler, Terry each one, JJ two.
Chandler 8-5-1, Haywood 0-7-0! Mahinmi DNP-Playoffs/French. Bynum 21-10-0. And still, the first game with the Rebounding edge: 39-37.
Mavs 31, Lakers 39. 15 fewer FGA, though
PIP-BoysLAL 56 DAL 20. Wide Margin, seen this story before in the 1st Round.Also seen only 4 Fastbreakpoints for the Lakers before. Right?
"Not saying a word."
On LA request
Disclaimer: If you couldn't tell by now, all italic sentences are made up thoughts, not actual quotes. Also, only 202 Pics. Getting better, Gettys.
Finally....KneeJerk Recap (TM) Jonthefon v3.03
The Mavs (beat/
lost to) [ ]¹ tonight (thanks to/ despite) totol reliance onDirk’s Awesomeness. The (cloud in the silver lining/ major culprit) once more as usualwas the (reliabilty/ lack) of support from his team-mates, with the exception of Jason Kidd/ Tyson Chandler². Especiallyuseless was Jason Terry/Shawn Marion Jose Barea Brendan HaywoodDeShawn Stevenson³ and it is (GUESS WHAT) THEY’RE ALMOSTNOT ALLUSELESS!
¹ Inserted Opponent
² Only one of them, mind you. Kidd 11 Points = Win.
³ Two at the minimum, up to all six
seven of them.