The Los Angeles Lakers have once again made it back to the Western Conference finals. The Lakers beat the Houston Rockets in game five of the NBA’s second-round playoffs 119-96. The Lakers have not seen the conference since 2010 when they beat eh Suns and went on to win the second of back to back titles. This crazy year in the bubble LeBron James has led the team back to the top. They now await the winner of the Clippers and Nuggets series.
The Lakers came out fast and hitting their shots. Before the blink of an eye, they were up by ten at 13 to three. LA took the lead after one at 35 to 20. It looked as though this was going to be easy but n the second the Rockets turned up the defense and got themselves back in. But even that was just a run as the Lakers and James put the rush back on and led at the half 62 to 51. Leading by as much as 22 in the quarter not a bad way to end the half.
Lebron had 19 points to lead the Lakers and James Harden led the Rockets with 19 as well. I think we all expected Harden to once again come out and score but you must be impressed by the way James after 17 years is still playing. That star player is invaluable in the playoffs and I don’t know if there has been a better player in the playoffs. (cough cough…Jordan)
In the third quarter, the Lakers came back alive and went on a run. The Lakers won the quarter 33 to 18 and pulling away. With nine minutes to go int the game, the score was 103-76 Lakers and James had 28 up till them and Harden was sitting at 29 for the Rockets. It was not like the Rockets played badly at all, but this is James’s time and he was not letting a team-up that they had down.
LeBron ended up with 29-11-7 on a big night where he took the last five minutes or so off. AD had 13 and 11 and Kuz put in a nice 17 on the night. Once again the bench of the Lakers was strong and Rondo is still playing out of his own mind. It is almost like Boston playoff Rondo has come back alive.
Whats next Lakers and Rockets
For the Rockets they have plenty of answers they have to come up with. Will the coach be there next season by his own leaving or from being fired? Did the Westbrook, Harden thing work out? Do you stay with a small ball or go get a big man? There are many more those are for starters. The criticism of Harden and Westbrook concerning their playoff woes will sure to flow from fans as well.
As for the Lakers, it is on to the conference finals. For now, they will be watching the rest of the Clippers and the Nuggets series. I do not think it is a secret that they would love to play the Clippers as the battle in the LA seemed so enticing. Even though they would be playing in Orlando I think they could feel that one all the way back to Cali. The odds say the Clippers are coming but they counted the Nuggets out it he first round as well, so.
Either way this was another good win for the Lakers and a time of reflection for the Rockets.