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Lakers notes 6/12: Bynum ready after another drain 06.12.10 at 2:55 pm ET
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Lakers starting center Andrew Bynum had his troublesome right knee drained again immediately after Game 4 Thursday night before he met with reporters. He said he feels much better and will play in Game 5 Sunday night at TD Garden with the NBA finals tied, 2-2.

“I went through the process and thought about it and did it again,” Bynum said following Lakers practice on Saturday at TD Garden. “It really helped out this time.”

Read More: Andrew Bynum, Celtics, Lakers, NBA Finals
Thompson on Big Show: Celts ‘aren’t as talented’ 06.11.10 at 8:19 pm ET
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Lakers radio color commentator and Los Angeles radio show co-host Mychal Thompson, a former Laker, appeared on The Big Show Friday afternoon to discuss the Celtics-Lakers matchup and who he sees winning the series.

Following are some highlights. To hear the interview, click on The Big Show audio on demand page.

How do you see this thing playing out?

I’m very amused by [Cedric Maxwell] over there enjoying his last moment of glory here, last moment of happiness celebrating the victory last night, led by “Donk and Shrek” or whatever his name is. Let him enjoy the moment right now because that’s the last piece of enjoyment he’ll have around here until the Yankees come in here and knock you guys out of the playoffs.

If Andrew Bynum doesn’t play, the Lakers are in trouble.

That’s OK, we have another 7-footer to act, don’t forget about my boy D.J. Mbenga sitting there. One thing D.J. can do is guard the basketball. We don’t care about scoring. The problem with the Lakers [in Game 4] was they couldn’t make stops, and D.J. can make stops. ‘€¦ We’re not panicking, because the Lakers have the best player in the world in Kobe Bryant. The only thing missing in the fourth quarter ‘€” I give the Celtics credit, they definitely came out and put it on the Lakers. They wanted it. They understood the sense of urgency to win that game. otherwise the series was over. I’ll give them credit for that. Now the Lakers must match their energy on Sunday [Game 5]. If the Lakers match the Celtics’ energy, the Celtics can’t beat them.

Isn’t that the same story from 2008?

Well, we had some softer guys on that team. But now with Ron Artest able to shut down Paul Pierce

Some people say we haven’t seen the best of the Celtics yet.

Seeing the best of the Celtics won’t matter, because you guys just aren’t as talented. Kendrick Perkins is not as good a player in the post as Pau Gasol. [Kevin Garnett] is not the KG of two years ago.

The Celtics haven’t played their best yet. Would that concern you?

No, because I know Paul Pierce and Ray Allen are going to bust out and have a good shooting game eventually. ‘€¦ I’m not worried about offensively. It’s the energy level, it’s the aggression. If the Lakers come out like they did in Games 1, 2 and 3, if they play with that kind of energy, they’ll beat the Celtics.

Have the fans in LA been complaining about the officiating?

Yeah, but you’ve got to play through that. You’ve got to be like Maxwell and [Larry] Bird and those guys were: tough mentally, don’t worry about the officials. When you start looking over your shoulder, you’re going to lose, you’ve got to forget about the officials and adjust to how they call the game.

Do we go seven games?

No, six. The Lakers win Sunday [in Game 5] and close them out Tuesday [in Game 6].

Read More: Celtics, Kevin Garnett, Kobe Bryant, Lakers
McHale on Big Show: Celts must win ‘old-style’ game 06.11.10 at 8:12 pm ET
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TNT NBA analyst Kevin McHale appeared on The Big Show Friday afternoon to discuss Celtics-Lakers, the controversial officiating throughout the playoffs, and whether or not he might coach again in the NBA.

Following are some highlights. To hear the interview, click on The Big Show audio on demand page.

Did [Game 4] shock you?

No. I was actually more shocked by Game 3. ‘€¦ Kobe [Bryant] goes 10-for-29, it’s kind of a muddy, muffed-up game, there was not a lot of flow to it. I thought they were going to win that game, I really did. [Derek] Fisher made some big shots and held them off. ‘€¦ I was telling somebody, they were saying, “Well, when the Lakers play free flow and they get their triangle” ‘€” they were talking like it was going to be 115, 114 points a night, that doesn’t happen in the playoffs. Everything tightens up, defense gets better, everybody’s after each other. So, no, I was more surprised that the Celtics lost one of those grind-it-out games, and now they’re going  to have to find a way to win two more of those kind of ugly, grind-it-out,  just classic, old-style games.

With Pau Gasol you have to keep him out of his sweet spot.

No question. I think that’s where Rasheed [Wallace] has done a nice job of running him, coming around, tipping some balls away from him, getting him out of the sweet spot. And what Gasol’s tendency is when he feels pressure, he doesn’t push back and get closer, he starts drifting out to the ball. So I think [Kendrick Perkins] and Rasheed have both pushed him off. ‘€¦ When you’re that much bigger and longer than the guy, you can get a one-dribble jump hook left, one-dribble jump hook right, pump fake, you’re just too close, just right under the basket. Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Celtics, Kevin Garnett, Kevin McHale, Kobe Bryant
UPDATE: Robinson brings Shrek and Donkey to twitter 06.11.10 at 2:51 pm ET
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After referring to himself and Glen Davis as “Shrek and Donkey” following their Game 4 heroics, Nate Robinson has taken their new nicknames to Twitter. Check out the pictures he used throughout the day Friday and be sure to follow him (@nate_robinson).

Read More: Glen Davis, Nate Robinson,
Phil on provoking techs: That’s not fair play 06.11.10 at 1:19 pm ET
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Kendrick Perkins and Rasheed Wallace are both sitting on six technical fouls during the postseason. If either of them gets one more they are subject to a one-game suspension from the NBA.

Doc Rivers has expressed concern that they could be provoked into getting technicals, but Lakers coach Phil Jackson said that was not part of his team’s mindset. “That’s not fair play,” he said. “That’s not the way to play the games.”

Before the series began, Jackson agreed with Rivers that the NBA should revisit the seven technical foul rule for the playoffs. Both coaches feel that the number should be reduced the longer teams are alive in the postseason and that the league should look at whether double technical fouls should be counted against the number.

That’s the biggest concern for Rivers. He noted after Game 4 that he pulled Perkins out of the game after he and Pau Gasol spent several possessions getting physical in the post because he was afraid a double tech was about to happen.

“Yeah, you can be provocative and get out there and act kind of like they do if you want to and get in people’s faces and do that,” Jackson said. “But that’s not the way I like to coach a team. That’s not what I consider positive coaching, and that’s what I like to think is the right way to do things.”

Read More: Kendrick Perkins, Phil Jackson, Rasheed Wallace,
Celtics still want to run 06.11.10 at 1:07 pm ET
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There is still a notion that the Celtics want to force the Lakers into a slow, grind-it-out game that prevents them from running. The second part of that statement is true, but the Celtics would prefer to get out in transition when they can and push the tempo.

“Well, we want that for the Lakers, but we want to run, really,” Doc Rivers said Friday. “We want to get out on the break. I think we have to run. They’re too big. They’re long. So we would like to get out in transition more, but they know that, too, and the two things they’ve done better is even when we’re getting stops, they’re getting back now. And on the first two games we thought we could beat them down the floor, and we did. Now they’re getting back. So we just have to keep getting stops and see how many times we can get [Rajon] Rondo out into transition.”

Rivers also is concerned with what he calls “empty possessions,” when his team fails to execute a set and is forced into a tough shot.

“I don’t mind missed shots, but the last two games we’ve had a ton of empty possessions where we — and we call it random, where we came down and really didn’t establish any flow and never got into a set or an execution, and that’s unlike us,” Rivers said. “That’s the only troublesome thing for me right now with our team, and we have to get out of that because it will come down to a one-possession game. If you keep wasting these possessions it’s going to come back and hurt you. I thought it did in Game 3.”

Read More: Celtics, Doc Rivers, Lakers,
Last run for C’s? Maybe not 06.11.10 at 12:40 pm ET
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Throughout the Celtics postseason run, the elephant in the room has been the future of the team’s eight free agents, notably Ray Allen. (Paul Pierce also has a player option for next season).

Doc Rivers noted Friday that the team’s uncertain future has not been a regular topic of concersation in the locker room. “No, we don’t talk about it at all,” Rivers said. “I’ve said that — I said it in the middle of the year. I think hopefully we sign Ray back — I think I can say that. If not, I just got fined.”

Rivers also said that he thinks Kevin Garnett will be better next season as he moves further away from his knee surgery. As for the notion that this is the last run for the Celtics, Rivers disagreed. “We don’t think that,” he said. “I think everyone outside of us, a lot of people do.”

Read More: Doc Rivers, Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen,
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