SPORTS KEN: Can James and Ad survive?

May be, may be not.

We don’t have to go back historically just so to find a good reason why the Lakers can still overcome the Nuggets.

At 0-3, the Showtime team is in a such deep hole that only the most fanatic like Jack Nicholson of One who Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest will continue pledging his deep loyalty.

If this team battling Denver were composed of KAJ, Magic Johnson, James Worthy, Kurt Rambis, Michael Cooper, Mychal Thompson, Byron Scott and A.C. Green, I will most likely still throw my support behind them.
But no. This Lebron James-led squad is of different stuff.

They did not grow up together and molded collectively by the former coach of the year Pat Riley.
Imagine playing at home and needing to nail Game 3 to give them more breathing space. Hey, James and AD choked, infecting D-Angelo Russel and Lonnie Walker who watched Jamal Murray sink those threes from all angles.

Only Austin Reaves somewhat provided outside firepower and Riu Hachimura’s futile guarding efforts who tried putting the cuffs on big guy Nikola Jokic.

Let’s us not talk about statistics here anymore.

Regardless of how many points, rebounds, assists and blocks the Laker duo produced in Game 3, the fact remains that everyone in the Laker roster – including coach Darvin Ham – failed to contain Murray, Porter and Brown from pouring in the points that mattered most.

Coaches are of the agreed opinion that a win is a win regardless if you won by one point or 20.
James, AD and the LA boys were in control for much of the game but they cooled off in the pivotal third and fourth quarters.

Know what?

Ham allowed Jokic to do his thing inside the paint and underneath the basket, collaring rebounds with impunity and penetrating the interior defense.

Take Jokic out of Denver and the whole offensive and defensive systems will collapse.

Meaning, the two-time MVP must be boxed out of action.

Hachimura looked so puny with his 6’8” frame he couldn’t even budge the fella even just an inch away from the action.

I kept on chattering about giving Tristan Thompson adequate time to take on Jokic. Were it not for this guy, James would not hav achieved his championship ambitions in Cleveland.

Yes, Jokic is the problem.

The Lakers crowd him inside but the Nugget center has such a pair of eagle eyes he could see the open man. Boom!

I think – as did James and AD did versus the Warriors – Jokic et al would rather clinch the semifinal victory back home for a final 4-1 tally fso that Denver fans can savor the feat with pure and ecstatic euphoria. (Email feedback to GOD BLESS THE PHILIPPINES!

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