Playing like this isn't the way that teams repeat as NBA champions.
That was the blunt assessment that Lamar Odom gave the Los Angeles Lakers Monday night after they fell 108-100 to the New Orleans Hornets.
"You've got to play defense," Lamar told the Associated Press. "If we don't do the intangibles, we need to depend on our shooting to win games and we're not always going to shoot well."
Monday was one of those nights, with the team shooting under 42 percent. But that wasn’t the only criticism LO (10 points, eight rebounds, three assists, steal) had after the game. Odom said the entire performance on the evening wasn’t up to snuff.
"It's unacceptable," he said to NBA.com
While the words were harsh, LO knows that with the postseason just eight games away, it’s going to take a lot more than what Los Angeles showed to have a successful run in the playoffs.
"You got a team trying to do their best against you. You've got to play defense. Communication is lacking. The chemistry for some reason is not clicking."
LO and the Lakers will get a chance to bounce back on Wednesday, when they face they Atlanta Hawks.
That game finishes off a five game road trip for Los Angeles. The last time the Lakers face Atlanta, LO nearly notched a triple double, going for 11 points, 14 rebounds and eight assists.
Paul leads way for Hornets, who withstand Lakers' rally (ESPN.com, March 29, 2010)
Paul nabs double-double as Hornets frustrate Kobe, Lakers (NBA.com, March 29, 2010)