2010 NBA Finals: Game 2 Preview

Steve O Speak

By Guest Blogger Geoff Nelowet:

Phil Jackson is 47-0 in playoff series when his team won game 1, and after a 102-89 thrashing of the Boston Celtics, it looks like the LA Lakers may do just that.

If the Celtics want to make a serious run in this series, they will have to start by playing better defense. They allowed Pau Gasol to be far too efficient in the paint, and the Celtics will never play well when Gasol is cruising to 23 points and 14 rebounds. Kobe Bryant also had yet another strong performance with 30 points, 7 rebounds and 6 assists. Again, the Celtics relied on their defense throughout the playoffs, and when they become an average playoff team, they look much more like the regular season Celtics.

Rajon Rondo also had probably his worst game of the playoffs, as he shot 6-14 from the floor and had difficulty getting to the paint with any consistency. Kobe Bryant did an excellent job guarding Rondo all night. The Celtics have relied on Rondo and strong team defense to guide them through the playoffs, but against the Lakers neither really showed up.

It will be interesting to see how Boston responds after game 1. It looked like they were just happy to be in the finals last week, as they put forth a sub par effort. Credit must be given to the Lakers, though, because they looked like a substantially better team with an answer to everything Boston attempted.

I’m going to pick the Celtics to come back from a lackluster effort. I think Rondo will have a much better game, and the team will lock down on Gasol and Bryant. It will be difficult for the Celtics to win the series after losing game 1, but anything is possible, and it is still a very long series. Finals score: Celtics 99 Lakers 88

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