Nothing in the NBA playoffs is certain except griping about the officiating and then backtracking about it.
Soon after Lakers center Andrew Bynum dropped a triple-double in the Lakers' 103-88 Game 1 win Sunday over Denver, Nuggets Coach George Karl contended that "he was playing nice illegal defense," that 30 instances went uncalled. The argument sparked amusement from Bynum, Kobe Bryant and Coach Mike Brown, who contended again Tuesday that Karl is "doing what a lot of coaches do."
Before Game 2, however, Karl suddenly didn't consider it a big deal.
"You guys talked about it much more than I talked about it," he said. "There's a lot of teams playing illegally against us because that's what we do, the best way to stop us is to put someone in the middle of the paint as much as you can. We've conquered it many nights."
They didn't in Game 1. Bynum tied an NBA playoff record with 10 blocks. The Nuggets shot only 35.6% from the field. And they allowed six Lakers to crack double figures. Still, it was fair to wonder what officials told Karl about the apparent non-calls since he seemed so upset.