There aren't going to be many NBA fans outside of Lakers Nation sad to see the results of Sunday's Game 4 between Los Angeles and New Orleans. Not only did the the underdog Hornets tie the series 2-2, Kobe Bryant reportedly needed crutches to get from the locker room to the team bus. Chris Paul was an unstoppable forces and sent a message to all those quick to anoint Derrick Rose as the league's top point guard.
Paul scored 27 point and had 15 assists and 13 rebounds in the 93-88 win over the Lakers. Los Angeles got balanced scoring from all five of their starters but only had 18 points off the bench. For the Hornets the surprise scoring stars were former Laker Trevor Ariza (19 points) and Jarret Jack who had five. Jack's five points might not seem like much, but they included a huge shot with under 10 seconds in the game that pushed the game out of reach of the defending champions.
The Lakers have a recent history of letting their early playoff rounds go long. They needed six games to beat the up-start Oklahoma City Thunder last year in a tight series and the prior year it was Aaron Brooks and the Houston Rockets that pushed the Lakers to seven games.
This time could be different if Kobe Bryant's foot injury proves to be something that limits his play. All signs point to him playing in Game 5 but it's possible that he will be slowed by the injury. Game 5 is scheduled for Tuesday in Los Angeles.