"We want to stop everyone, but sometimes you just can't stop Kobe," Suns guard Steve Nash said of Bryant, who's averaging 28.9 points per game in the playoffs. "So we can't get discouraged. He's playing as well as maybe he's ever played right now. He may continue to do that. We've proven we can win if he plays great, but we've got to be really solid. We've got to be tough. We've got to win all the little battles, because they do have some matchups and talent that we don't have."
Jackson echoed Nash's concerns about the little things, citing a few offensive rebounds the Lakers failed to secure in the first quarter of Game 4. Those mistakes eventually snowballed into team-wide problems with execution, even after the Lakers took care of almost every detail in the first two games while extending their playoff winning streak to eight games.
"We understood that it was going to be hard," Gasol said. "The first two results we obtained gave us a good feeling, but we knew the Suns were going to bounce back, and they have."
Bryant and center Andrew Bynum didn't appear to practice with the Lakers on Wednesday, although Jackson didn't say for sure. Bynum is playing on an injured right knee that will require surgery, while Bryant simply takes advantage of every chance to rest his accumulated injuries.
Western Conference Finals
L.A. Lakers 2, Phoenix 2
L.A. Lakers 128, Phoenix 107
L.A. Lakers 124, Phoenix 112
Phoenix 118, L.A. Lakers 109
Phoenix 115, L.A. Lakers 106
Today: Phoenix at L.A. Lakers, 7 p.m.
Saturday: L.A. Lakers at Phoenix, 6:30 p.m.
x-Monday: Phoenix at L.A. Lakers, 7 p.m.
x- if necessary
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