Wow, that was a horrible showing by the Rockets. The game was maybe close for the first 6 minutes while the Rockets were still putting up a fight, but the Lakers were drawing fouls on the Rockets front line and that was the first step in a recipe for disaster. Mix in a bunch of sloppy turnovers and horrid shooting from every player wearing a red jersey and you get a 40 point loss (118-78).
The Lakers did change their approach offensively by going to the post – Gasol and Bynum – early which, to me, was what they should have been doing since the start even with Yao on the floor. Without any Rockets post presence, the Lakers defense adjusted to help on dribble drives and close on outside shooters. Not every Rockets shot was contested, but those that weren’t clanged hard off the iron. The poor shooting was contagious, infecting every player on the Rockets roster, and I watched the entirety of the game only to see if the bench guys could get it to within 20. Didn’t happen.
So now the Rockets go back home and at least get one more shot at it in Game 6. The Rockets best chance to win is if they can play extremely well defensively as we just don’t have the guns to win a shootout. I dread the image of Kobe and the Lakers celebrating a series victory in the Toyota Center. C’mon, Rockets! Let’s send this series back to L.A.