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LA, ``There`s No Sixth Game!``

Posted June. 14, 2001 16:01,   


The LA Lakers almost grabbed the NBA title. They just need one more victory to win the title.

The LA Lakers won over 100-86 the Philadelphia 76ers in the fourth game of the final which was held in the First Union Center in Philadelphia, recording 3 wins and 1 loss.

In the best-of-seven series, one more victory will make the LA Lakers a champion again.

The fourth game can be summarized like this; `One-two punch of Shaquille O`Neal and Kobe Bryant laid down the brilliant Allen Iverson on the canvas.

O`Neal had 34 points and 14 rebounds, and Bryant recorded 19 points, 10 rebounds, and 9 assists.

O`Neal with his large physique of 2m16 height and 143 kg, has overwhelmed `the hero of the Congo` Dikembe Mutombo from the beginning of the game. When O`Neal led the game with 14 rebounds, it was like ridiculing Mutombo who was a rebound leader in the regular season with the average of 13.5 rebounds. Mutombo grabbed only 9 rebounds.

But Mutombo has been given many unfair whistles. O`Neal used his elbows dashing into the rim. Since the referee did not blow the whistle on O`Neal who hit Mutombo`s face with his left elbow, Mutombo could not defend him aggressively.

On the other hand, the LA Lakers took the initiative, leading the first half with 14 point difference (51-37) by the attacking offense of O`Neal and Bryant who has shown the marvelous combi-play from the first quarter (22-14).

Iverson (35 points and 4 assists) who is the triple MVP of this season, made a counterattack for a while in the second half. At the fourth quarter down by 18 points (77-59), Iverson chased the LA Lakers by 7 point difference (77-70), making the lay-up and the jumping shot consecutively.

But the `single play` could not reverse the game. As O`Neal changed the atmosphere with the slam dunk, the Lakers stopped chase with three consecutive three point shots by Brian Shaw, Tyronn Lue, and Robert Horry.

The 76ers players who have been exhausted defending O`Neal and Bryant were absentminded with the continued long-range shots of six-men.

The fifth game will be held in the same place on 16th.

Jeon Chang jeon@donga.com