NBA Playoffs 2012: Should the LA Lakers Tank a Couple Games on Purpose?

The Los Angeles Lakers might want to consider losing a game or two to the Denver Nuggets if they want to get past the Oklahoma City Thunder in the second round of the NBA playoffs. 

This may sound like a crazy idea because no team should ever tank games—especially in the playoffs. However, this may be one of those instances where a team may have to out of desperation. 

The Lakers cannot afford to enter a seven-game series with a team like the Thunder without their best defender—Metta World Peace.

MWP is currently serving his seven-game suspension after throwing an ill-advised elbow to the back of Thunder G/F James Harden's neck. Currently, there are four games left on his suspension. The Lakers are currently up 2-0 to the Nuggets, and based on the way the first two games have gone, the Lakers could easily sweep the Nuggets or, at most, take it in five.

Andrew Bynum is too much for JaVale McGee, and Kobe Bryant is manhandling every single defender thrown his way. Ramon Sessions is making key shots and Pau Gasol is being his usual very effective self. It will take a miracle for the Nuggets to even beat the Lakers twice in the series, let alone four times.

If the Lakers do sweep the Nuggets, which at this point is highly likely, the team would not have Metta's services for the first two games against the Thunder. If the Lakers win in five, they would miss their starting small forward for only one game. 

The Thunder, meanwhile, are up 2-0 against the Dallas Mavericks. Dallas have lost Games 1 and 2 though the team has played better than they have all season long. There are not too many scenarios that involve the Mavericks beating the Thunder here, so it’s safe to say that Kevin Durant and company will advance to the second round.

This is why the Lakers need to put the starters to rest and let the Nuggets have a game or two. Giving up tw...

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