2011 NBA Playoffs, Mavericks Vs. Lakers: Do The Lakers Have Trust Issues?

The Los Angeles Lakers lost to the Dallas Mavericks again on Wednesday night, and now fave a pretty serious 2-0 hole as the series moves to Dallas. As dire as their situation is in the series, they might be facing some even more difficult issues within their own locker room. They haven't looked at all like the team that has won two straight NBA Championships, and questions about any potential issues they are facing among themselves are starting to be raised. Andrew Bynum said something after the game last night that will only make them grow louder. According to Elliott Teaford of the Los Angeles Daily News, Bynum said the Lakers have some trust issues.

"It's deeply rooted at this point," center Andrew Bynum said. "It's obvious we have trust issues and unless we come out and discuss them, nothing is going to change. It's individually between all 13 of us. We have trust issues right now."

That is not something you want to hear from a member of your starting lineup. Kobe Bryant tried to discount those claims as saying that the was specifically referring to the defensive rotations the Lakers missed in this game, but it feels like Bynum is hinting at something deeper. The Lakers just don't look very cohesive, and they don't appear to have very much of the chemistry that will be necessary to advance in this series.

The other big issue that has come forth in this series and in the Playoffs as a whole has been the play of Pau Gasol. Gasol finished with 13 points and 10 rebounds, which would be a pretty solid statistical line for most, but he just failed to play with very much energy and couldn't really register a positive impact on the game. Mike Bresnahan of the Los Angeles Times had some interesting things to report from Gasol's performance.

(Lakers coach Phil) Jackson said there were "weird things" and "gremlins" in Gasol's game.

"Wish I could have been more productive," Gasol said. "Wish I could have been more effective. Some plays I should have finished better, but I tried my best."

Call me crazy, but if one of the star players that my team is counting on plays as crummy as Gasol has, I want a little bit more of a reaction from him. His response makes it feel like Gasol is just letting this slump happen to him, when he should be going out there trying his best to break through it. Don't "wish" you could be more productive, just be more productive. Easy for me to say of course, but his apparent ambivalence to his struggles is frustrating.

The Lakers have a chance to get back into this series, but it will probably take two wins in Dallas to get it done. The third game of the series will take place on Friday at 6:30.

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