The Los Angeles Lakers dropped Game 2 and if losing Kobe Bryant to injury wasn't enough, there's a new injury to Los Angeles as Steve Blake suffered a hamstring injury, but injuries don't justify losing to Metta World Peace.
The fact that Metta World Peace is the voice of reason amongst the madness befalling LA shows how far the Lakers have fallen. Even level-headed Steve Nash is already piling on the excuses as to why LA will be unceremoniously be swept out of the playoffs in the first round.
What exactly did the Lakers think was going to happen playing their bigs 40+ min all season or Kobe playing entire games down the stretch? There is reasoning behind Popovich's fastidious attention to player's minutes. Multiple studies support the seemingly obvious fact that competitors are much more likely to get injured when they play beyond their bodies' limits or have not gotten enough time to recover. The Lakers have no bench to keep games competitive while their aging team rests and therefore their starters have to play extended time.
This season for the Lakers was pretty much written in stone as soon as they fell behind early. Trying to make up ground caused over-extension of minutes which resulted in injuries. The funny thing is that it wasn't really a personnel issue in terms of what prevented the Lakers from gelling early on. It was the inflated egos of Kobe, Dwight, and Pau, each competing for the spotlight, which led to a disgruntled locker room and a disjointed offense coached by the hapless Pringles man. The Lakers problems this season have been entirely a product of their own devices. Kobe's incredible ME first attitude scuttled their season before it began.