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2010 NBA Playoffs: Los Angeles Lakers vs. Boston Celtics, NBA Finals, Series Preview

L.A. Lakers pictures, history, records, championships, and data about Kobe Bryant and players like Magic Johnson
Los Angeles Lakers

2010 NBA Playoffs NBA Finals
Los Angeles Lakers vs. Boston Celtics

Boston Celtics

Series Index:

Game 1: Lakers 102, Celtics 89 at Los Angeles   Game recap & pictures
Game 2: Celtics 103, Lakers 94 at Los Angeles   Game recap & pictures
Game 3: Lakers 91, Celtics 84 at Boston   Game recap & pictures
Game 4: Celtics 96, Lakers 89 at Boston   Game recap & pictures
Game 5: Celtics 92, Lakers 86 at Boston   Game recap & pictures
Game 6: Lakers 89, Celtics 67 at Los Angeles   Game recap & pictures
Game 7: Lakers 83, Celtics 79 at Los Angeles Game recap & pictures

Back to Playoffs 2010

NBA Playoffs 2010 - NBA Finals - Series Preview

Los Angeles Lakers vs. Boston Celtics

Series Preview

Los Angeles LakersBoston Celtics

May 30: The Los Angeles Lakers and Boston Celtics will face each other in the 2010 NBA Finals. And it won't be only the rematch of the 2008 Finals or the clash of the last two champions. The Lakers vs. Celtics rivalry is the most classic in NBA history, they have met in the Finals 11 times so far (2 went for the Lakers, 9 for the Celtics), and they have given life to the league in different moments of its existence. Particularly on the 80's when the Lakers vs Celtics, Magic Johnson vs Larry Bird confrontations took the league to the next level, maybe with the best basketball the world has ever seen.

For these Lakers it means the chance to repeat and take revenge from 2008 while for Kobe Bryant and Derek Fisher it could be their 5th championship.

This time the Lakers have home-court advantage, which means they will play the first two games at Los Angeles, the next three at Boston and then back to L.A. if games 6 and 7 are necessary.

The Lakers are a better as a team than they were two years ago, they have grown, they have championship experience and most of their players have made significant contribution at some point in the 2010 playoffs. The Celtics are also better and their "Big three" these days are more something like "Rajon Rondo and his big three".

  Guards Forwards Center Key reserves
Los Angeles Lakers
Los Angeles Lakers
Derek Fisher
Derek Fisher
Kobe Bryant
Kobe Bryant
Ron Artest
Ron Artest
Pau Gasol
Pau Gasol
Andrew Bynum
Andrew Bynum
Lamar Odom
Jordan Farmar
Shannon Brown
Sasha Vujacic
Luke Walton
Boston Celtics
Boston Celtics
Rajon Rondo
Rajon Rondo
Ray Allen
Ray Allen
Paul Pierce
Paul Pierce
Kevin Garnett
Kevin Garnett
Kendrick Perkins
Kendrick Perkins
Rasheed Wallace
Nate Robinson
Glen Davis
Tony Allen

Ron Artest, the only new piece added to the 2009 Champions has struggled with his shot in many games but he has been the strongest point on defense and found his offense on game 6 against the Suns. While trying to stop Celtics top scorer and 2008 Finals MVP Paul Pierce he will have the chance to definitely prove that letting Trevor Ariza go was the right decision.

Pau Gasol with his repertory and basketball IQ is the offensive advantage the Lakers have inside over any rival and his two-man show with Kobe is sometimes perfect. Kevin Garnett and Kendrick Perkins will try to outpower him.

Despite many complain he's old and slow in comparison with other point guards, Derek Fisher has proved them wrong and is playing like he has always done, strong on defense, reliable on clutch situations and mistake-free. His experience will be a factor against a Rajon Rondo who, if healthy, is currently the best player for Boston and could in fact be a problem. But don't be so sure. Kobe could leave Ray Allen and help and Jordan Farmar and even Sasha Vujacic could come from the bench if needed.

Andrew Bynum, whose season ended early in 2008 is doing what he can with his current injured knee but when he's on the floor with Pau playing power forward the Lakers are too big to handle.

Kobe Bryant is in another category. He's playing as good as he ever had. Scoring at least 30 in 10 of the last 11 games, controlling the rhythm of the team, feeding his teammates and dominating the game on the final minutes.

The Lakers bench is crucial for the team's success, particularly Lamar Odom who usually plays starter minutes and when he does it up to his talent the Lakers usually win. When he doesn't things get harder for L.A. Also Farmar, Shannon Brown and lately Vujacic, see their minutes but their contribution is not always consistent. The first players off the bench for the Celtics are Rasheed Wallace who knows how to play in big games, Nate Robinson who can really score Glen Davis and Tony Allen

Both Odom and Gasol were heavily criticized for being "soft" against the Celtics in 2008 and they will seek redemption this year.

The Lakers and the Celtics split the regular season series, with each team winning on the other's home floor by one point.  Kobe hit the one of his season's game-winners in the Lakers' win, while he didn't play in the other game

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