This grainy photo purports to be Robin Lopez on the practice court but it could just be Big Foot. Not sure.
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It cracks me up to no end that Kobe thinks he needs to trump up some revenge thing to fire himself and his teammates up for a series with the Suns. Does he really think his team that started Smush Parker and Kwame Brown should have won?
Check that -- he probably does, but still...It's a contrived motivational ploy if I ever saw one and Alvin Gentry agrees.
"I don't think he really means that. Let me see, since that time they won a championship and played for a championship. I don't think the Phoenix Suns knocking him out of the playoffs is a real motivational factor for him. Maybe he should be talking about Boston for beating him that year and he can go back and get them this year. I don't know if we are on his radar right now. We shouldn't be on his radar if we are."
Speaking of Kobe, Gentry was asked "how you stop Kobe" to which he responded with a chuckle, "We're not worried about Kobe Bryant." ha ha...But seriously, he said the key was to try and keep him off the foul line and try and make him an outside shooter and hope he's missing. Nothing new there.
Jarron Collins and Robin Lopez Update
There were exactly zero questions asked about Jarron's health status (not sure why), but he was on the floor shooting and didn't seem to have any issues with his hand/wrist injury. His shot looked normal to me (and that's all I am going to say about that).
Robin is improving daily by all accounts and ran some with the first team and some with the second, but Gentry said we shouldn't read anything into that. Lopez' self-described role is to "crash the boards and deter easy lay-ups".
"I feel like my conditioning is improving," Robin said about his conditioning. "Right now, practicing with the guys, I feel good. I am getting a good feeling of where I should be on the floor. All the instincts are coming back to me, I'm feeling a good connection with the guys. It's a different ball game, obviously, playing in the playoffs, but right now in practice I am feeling good."
And the official word of cautious hope from Coach Gentry, "We anticipate him playing. It's nothing official yet, but if he keeps making the progress that he's making, I think that he'll be able to play."
Gentry obviously would prefer to not have a full 7 days before Game 1, but as he likes to say, "It is what it is" and so you make the best of it. The team had a "spirited" and "competitive" practice today to help get their rhythm back.
Channing Frye Sums It Up Good
Fitting that on the day Channing comes over a for a quick chat that he also had the best quote of the day.
Asked about how important it is to get a split in LA, Channing Fyre fired back.
"You know what. You can't go in there with that kind of bull crap attitude. You got to go in there like, 'I'm going to win two'. Everyone counted us out all through the year, so we're going to say, 'screw it' and come out here and let it ride. We have nothing to lose, we're going to come in guns blazing.
No kids, don't play with guns.
You know, what do we have to lose? Why not root for us?...For us, it's just going out there and having fun and balling."
Gentry practice 051410
Frye practice 051410
Be sure to check me out on this week's Overdose show with Tas and Skeets and let me know how I did representing the 602...
The Basketball Jones | Blogs | TheScore.com
Join The Jones on a sonic journey as we welcome John Krolik from Cavs: The Blog and Seth Pollack from Bright Side of the Sun to discuss the Cavaliers’ epic collapse, Nash’s left eye, table shuffleboard, Ross Geller, LeBron’s future with Cleveland, kangaroos, the Suns’ keys to victory, Skeets’ English, public transit and caaacksaaackahhhs. So give your eyes a rest and embrace this audio explosion.
- Phil Jackson at it Again. | Bright Side Of The Sun
On Friday, Jackson retreated from praise and started posturing when asked if it was difficult to simulate the Suns and their star point guard Steve Nash in practice during the long layoff before Game 1. "Yeah, because you can't carry the ball like he does in practice," Jackson said, smiling as he moved his arm and turned over his palm, the symbol for an illegal carry in the unofficial sign language of basketball. "You can't pick that ball up and run with it."
- Robin Lopez might matter in the playoffs, and that is remarkable | Ball Don't Lie - NBA - Yahoo! Sports
"I think [Lopez's] presence will help them out," Lakers head coach Phil Jackson told NBA FanHouse's Sam Amick. "They need a big body. That's where we've had some success with them these last couple years, but we'll have to see how Robin comes through this."
- Winning season changes perception of Steve Nash extension | Valley of the Suns
The Phoenix Suns' run to the Western Conference Finals changes the perception of the extensions given to Steve Nash and Grant Hill.
- azcentral.com blogs - Coro's Suns dish - PaulCoro | Lopez's fits make him fit
And the temper? "Still there," Dudley said with eyes widened. "It's still there. That's good, though. You want your bigs to have a temper. I don't mind him fouling and messing someone up. That's a part of the game. You want your bigs like that." He is supposed to be an interior intimidator, after all. At the same time, he has taken down a practice court playoff banner in frustration and had to be chastised by the staff for blowing his lid during practice action. He is extremely competitive. The broken-door incident came after losing a two-on-two game. Then, it was Jarron Collins as his adversary. Now, it's Dwayne Jones, who declares Lopez "ready to go." "He's definitely got a lot better in the past week or two since we've been going at it," Jones said. "It's literally starting to get full blows. "He can't push me around so I'm having a little fun with it. Well, I'm having fun. I have fun getting under people's skin."
- The energy fueling Phoenix's offensive juggernaut | TrueHoop Blog - ESPN
The Phoenix Suns' pick-and-roll: You know it's coming, but there's only so much you can do about it. That pick-and-roll attack is the primary reason
- Channing Frye: the hidden X-factor | Valley of the Suns
In a series headlined by Kobe Bryant, Phil Jackson and Steve Nash, Phoenix Suns center Channing Frye would appear to be just another face in the crowd. But somewhere hidden in all of the big names and star power Frye holds the key to a successful series for the Suns.
- Lakers-Suns Preview in Early 1990s Video Game Format | Silver Screen and Roll
Lakers-Suns Preview in Early 1990s Video Game Format
- Lakers aware they need Mob mentality | Press-Telegram
"It's a chance for us to really pick it up," Lakers sixth man Lamar Odom said. "It would be important for us to outplay their bench if we want to win this series."
- Cleveland tops my list of 10 Chokingest Cities in America | John P. Lopez - SI.com
Oh, the heartbreak. The Phoenix Suns could well be called the Boston Red Sox of the NBA -- they were a part of one of the defining moments in their game's history, and yet they still ultimately lost. The 1976 Suns-Celtics series was tied 2-2, in Boston. There was John Havlicek and Paul Westphal and all the stars. Game 5 went three overtimes and the Suns lost 128-126. They didn't recover back home in Game 6.
- Phoenix Suns shooters must solve Los Angeles Lakers' 3-point defense
"They get up in you and make you drive and they have help-side defense," Suns forward Jared Dudley said. "The one time we were successful we got stops and into transition. It's hard for them to guard the 3 in transition."
- Sports Meme Power Rankings: Lebron James, Eternal Failure, Going To Knicks | SB Nation
Short of cutting him in half with a broadsword, little the Lakers can do will surprise Nash. (Which is why Lamar Odom will, in fact, attempt this exact move in game one without interference from officials. Twice.) He's Canadian, and thus somehow polite and indestructible. Do your worst. He'll only tape himself together with some gardening supplies and go back out for the second half.
- Suns Spot | Western Conference Finals Preview
Someone should let Bill Plaschke over at the Los Angeles Times know that the Suns are a completely different team than the Utah Jazz. Mr. Paschke claims the Suns have no chance at beating the Lakers.
- Dudley Ready To Take On The Lakers | ESPN Video - ESPN
Jared Dudley talks about facing the Lakers and his JMZ website
- Lakers vs. Suns: A battle of diametrically opposed optimism | Silver Screen and Roll
What's more, the Suns are filled with a confidence even the Lakers can't match. They just exorcised an entire era's worth of demons, and did so in commanding fashion. The Spurs were Phoenix's nemisis, responsible for the failure and downfall of the Seven Second or Less era. Now, SSOL is reborn and the Spurs have been consumed in the ashes. You don't finally climb to the top of your own personal Mount Everest without thinking that anything is possible afterwards.