2011 NBA Playoffs: What the Lakers Need To Figure Out To Beat Dallas

Game 1 was a hiccup. Game 2 was a disaster.

The Los Angeles Lakers are down 0-2 to the No. 3 seed, Dallas Mavericks in the Conference Semifinals. Who would've thought they'd be hearing that on the sports radio waves on Thursday morning? Well first off, the media has really overhyped this deficit. The Lakers are down by two games, but are by no means out of this series. Sure, it's a hole, but not a hole that LA can dig themselves out of. Let's start off, step by step, on what the Lakers need to do to beat the Dallas Mavericks and overcome this 0-2 deficit.

First off, if you happen to see a 7'0" Spaniard walking through the streets of Los Angeles, let him know he's got a must-win game he needs to play in Dallas on Friday night. Pau Gasol has been M.I.A. since the playoffs started. Kobe's "Scottie Pippen" has been playing like he should be the sixth man for LA. Pau needs to step it up. Simple as that. Play defense on Dirk Nowitzki and go to town on him on the other side of the court, down in the paint. He can do it. He's not running on short fumes. He's not that old. He can do it and he needs to do it now.

Second, Andrew Bynum needs a few more touches. I'm not saying they should feed him the rock almost every offensive possession, but get the big man a few more touches. He has strength on Tyson Chandler and Dirk Nowitzki, so he should be more assertive in the offense. But in order to get more touches on offense, Bynum needs to really step up on his defense. We all know Kobe Bryant. You don't play defense, you don't get the rock. Defense wins titles and defense comes first. Time to grow up, Andrew.

Third, Defense-Defense-Defense. The show J.J. Barea put on the Lakers on Wednesday made me absolutely sick. Somebody needs to guard the point guard. I understand that Derek Fisher's legs aren't all that young, but the job still needs to be done. I wouldn't mind seeing Kobe play the point for a few minutes and putting Shannon Bro...

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