Phoenix Suns forward Amare Stoudmire had a monster Game 3 (42 points and 11 rebounds) in the 118-109 win against the Lakers.
Calling Lamar Odom, calling Lamar Odom, it’s your turn to say Amare had a lucky game..yea right.
In this game, on this night, Suns coach Alvin Gentry got it right. He finally figured out a defensive scheme to slow the Lakers. Phoenix switched to a zone defense that forced much of the action outside the paint in the Laker end.
The Lakers took a WHOPPING 32 3 -point shots, shooting a shade above 28%. That my friend is not going to cut it when trying to win a playoff game on the road, no matter who the opponent is.
Kobe Bryant looked like “Magic” for the Lakers by scoring a team high 36 points on 13 of -24 shooting, added 9 rebounds and 11 assists. Pau Gasol contributed 23 points in the loss.
In order for Los Angeles to win game 4, they need to take a page from the Suns playbook and run heavy zone sets in the defensive end. If the Lakers can neutralize Stoudmire they will force the Suns to look elsewhere for points.
For Kobe and Co., a win in Game 4 is a must. If they fail to convert, they will return home to serious doubts and the same unanswered questions they ended their regular season with.
Game 4 is set for 6:00PM PST on Tuesday in Phoenix.