The Lakers dominated the Portland Trailblazers.
I admit, I was tempted to start and stop there. I mean, what more is there to say, really? This game, in a very real way, was over before it even began. The Lakers were playing a game on what is officially Kobe Bryant day in LA and Orange County. They were playing the day after what would have been Kobe’s 42nd birthday. They were playing wearing Kobe Bryant Black Mamba jerseys, The score, early on, was 24 to 8.
The Blazers did not stand a chance.
It’s hard to call this just a basketball game. When you consider Kobe Bryant and yet another unjustified shooting of unarmed Black man while the teams played on a court emblazoned with BLACK LIVES MATTER at center court. Chris Paul and LeBron James both made a point to bring the topic at hand back to the forefront during their post game interviews. This was a game, but it was also a statement. The Lakers stated to the Association that any news of their demise after a Game 1 loss was premature. The league also put everyone on notice that they stand behind those powerful words on the court they all play on.
Additionally, the world made a statement as fans of his remembered Kobe Bryant on his day.
Do you see now why I was very tempted to start and stop with the first sentence? The Lakers won; they won big, which is always nice. The only real problem with a victory like this is believing you can recreate it. Big blow outs like this rarely happen back to back. The Blazers are still alive and the Lakers will have to play with the same energy they brought in this game to close out the series. They can’t expect this to happen again. End of day, its just a W and they have to earn another one to move on.
That all being said, there was more to think about today.