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Old 09-24-2001, 01:50 AM   #1
Spike
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Default Lakers' biggest obstacles to a three-peat

So what do you guys think are the Lakers' biggest obstacles to a three-peat?

Unless something major happens next year, like Kobe or Shaq get injured during next year's playoffs, I still think the Lakers are head and shoulders above everyone else. Like they're at one level and every other team in the league is a level below them.

But I think there are contenders, that while I might not put money on them to beat the Lakers, I think they have a chance.

One is the Kings, who not only did the unthinkable as far as the national media was concerned during the season and re-sign Chris Webber but they also made an incredible upgrade at point guard in surprisingly being able to trade Jason Williams for Mike Bibby. It's kind of ridiculous when your starting point guard has to sit down at the end of playoff games because you don't trust him at all.

Another team I think could still take the Lakers down is the San Antonio Spurs. Yeah they got manhandled last year (especially in Games 3 and 4) in their series with the Lakers but they still matchup well with the Lakers I think. Yeah Horace Grant is gone and they picked up Samaki Walker. But that's really more offense and less defense so Tim Duncan should continue to dominate in matchups with the Lakers. And yes, the Spurs did lose Derek Anderson but they replaced him with Bruce Bowen who I heard is a good defender and this year's version of the guy who's going to try to slowdown Kobe Bryant.

I think the big thing with them is psychology. After last year's playoff series with the Lakers they have to be thinking, "Can we ever beat these guys?". And add to that Phil Jackson's own mind games ("The Spurs 1999 title should come with an asterisk because it was in a strike-shortened season") and it becomes a lot to maul over. But on paper, I still think this team can take the Lakers down. It's just a matter of actually doing it.
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Old 09-24-2001, 10:43 AM   #2
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Unfortunately, I think the Lakers can get their 3-peat. There shouldn't be too much of a problem. Like you said, the Spurs and Kings might be the best teams to challenge them.
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Old 09-24-2001, 06:07 PM   #3
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Default Re: Lakers' biggest obstacles to a three-peat

Quote:
Originally posted by Spike
And yes, the Spurs did lose Derek Anderson but they replaced him with Bruce Bowen who I heard is a good defender and this year's version of the guy who's going to try to slowdown Kobe Bryant.
I disagree - replacing Anderson with Bowens helps on defense, but the lost factor is offense. David Robinson's numbers continue to decline and without the young star Anderson was, the Spurs are left with only Duncan.

Other teams I think could challenge are yes, the Kings, I really like Webber and Bibby together. I think they could be the next coming of Garnett and Marbury (if they only would have stayed together!). I also think the Magic will be very solid.
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Old 09-30-2001, 05:16 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally posted by mjames:

I disagree - replacing Anderson with Bowens helps on defense, but the lost factor is offense. David Robinson's numbers continue to decline and without the young star Anderson was, the Spurs are left with only Duncan.
Yeah I agree with that but the San Antonio Spurs also acquired Steve Smith this Summer and he can make up for Derek Anderson's missing points. He's a perfect compliment for their "Twin Towers" because he can hit the outside shot to go along with his own post game.

So while Anderson's loss hurts, I wouldn't exactly call it devastating. Smith is better than getting nothing for him. Smith can be in there when the Spurs need a more offensive lineup and Bowen can be in there when they need a more defensive lineup.

Quote:
Other teams I think could challenge are yes, the Kings, I really like Webber and Bibby together. I think they could be the next coming of Garnett and Marbury (if they only would have stayed together!).
I agree. Unfortunately, Mike Bibby's a free agent next Summer as well so we'll have to see if doesn't do what Marbury does and leaves. Good starting point guards are hard to come by, so no doubt a lot of teams will bid for his services and the Kings are already paying a luxury tax by being over the cap after Chris Webber's re-signing.
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