If you saw that Kobe Bryant scored 36 points against the Dallas Mavericks, one might assume that the Lakers were able to come away with a victory in Game 1. But his scoring total doesn't tell the whole story. He failed to tally a single assist, and had three turnovers, including a crucial one with about 20 seconds left that enabled the Mavericks to grab the lead. But according to Mike Bresnahan of the Los Angeles Times, Kobe is unwilling to accept any of the blame for the Game 1 loss.
Bryant repeatedly said it wasn't his fault, pointing instead to the Lakers' reserves.
"It had nothing to do with me," he said. "I'm going to do what I do. I think the second unit, we've got to make a conscious effort to get the ball in to Pau and get the ball in to Andrew."
Now Kobe did have a pretty good game, but that just isn't what you want to see form your team leader. Lakers coach Phil Jackson was ready to place blame on the entire team, for pretty much every aspect of the game.
Or as Jackson said, the Lakers "stopped playing defense and stopped playing offense."
If the Lakers can't get themselves back into this series and end up losing to the Mavs, this is a game that will really hurt.