2008 NBA Playoffs: Conference Finals, Los Angeles Lakers vs. San Antonio Spurs, Preview

Information about games of the L.A. Lakers vs. San Antonio Spurs series in the 2008 NBA Playoffs, with score, recap, pictures, stats, highlights, quotes and Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol performance.

2008 NBA Playoffs Conference Finals
Los Angeles Lakers vs. San Antonio Spurs

Series Index:

Game 1: Lakers 89, Spurs 85 at Los Angeles   Game recap & pictures
Game 2: Lakers 101, Spurs 71 at Los Angeles   Game recap & pictures
Game 3: Spurs103, Lakers 84 at San Antonio   Game recap & pictures
Game 4: Lakers 93, Spurs 91 at San Antonio   Game recap & pictures
Game 5: Lakers 100, Spurs 92 at Los Angeles   Game recap & pictures

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NBA Playoffs 2008 - Conference Finals - Series Preview

Los Angeles Lakers vs. San Antonio Spurs

Series Preview

Los Angeles LakersSan Antonio SpursMay 20: In the 2008 Conference Finals, the Lakers will face the San Antonio Spurs. It will be the 6th time they face each other since 1999. The Laker won in 2001, 2002 and 2004 and the Spurs in 1999 and 2003. The winner of this series won the Championship each time with the exception of the Lakers in 2004 (lost the Finals against Detroit).

Derek Fisher, Kobe Bryant for L.A., Tim Duncan for San Antonio and Robert Horry for both played in all those series. The main core of the Spurs remains the same from the last two meetings with Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili but the Lakers are a pretty different team that bases its offense in the triangle of Bryant, Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom and the big difference with previous encounters will be the absence of Shaquille O'Neal.

Tim Duncan is not the same from previous years but he can still be a nightmare for the Lakers (and Gasol) in the post. Manu Ginobili has taken more protagonism, leading the Spurs in scoring in the regular season and Tony Parker has taken that role in the playoffs. With that trio and complementary players such as Bruce Bowen, Robert Horry, Michael Finley, Fabricio Oberto and Kurt Thomas, the Spurs have the edge in experience.

The Lakers are younger and have had more time to rest and despite having only a couple of players with good playoff experience they are playing better than ever, moving the ball like they've together for years, and of course they have the season MVP Kobe Bryant in his best moment.

Derek Fisher, who starred one of the Playoffs greatest plays with his 0.4 miraculous shot in Game 5 of the 2004 Conference Semifinals against San Antonio, is the oldest of the Lakers players and will have the hard task to try to stop a much younger and faster opponent in Tony Parker. But he did an excellent job in a similar situation against the Jazz, controlling Deron Williams. Bowen chasing Kobe all over the court is already a classic but Kobe's defense on Ginobili will also be one of the keys for the Lakers success, because Manu is the one who handles the ball and takes decisions when it matters.

The teams went 2-2 against each other this season.

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