Jared Dudley Says Lakers Were Never Worried About Trail Blazers, Says Rockets Pose A Bigger Threat Than The Thunder

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(via Silver Screen and Roll)

(via Silver Screen and Roll)

After a concerning loss in Game 1, the Los Angeles Lakers responded in a huge way, winning the next four games in an absolutely dominant fashion.

With their next opponent unclear, nobody really knows what awaits the Lakeshow in round 2. Fortunately, the team doesn't seem to be too worried about it.

In a chat with Silver Screen and Roll, Lakers veteran Jared Dudley shared some of his team's thinking as they prepare for another series.

What was the mood of the team when the Lakers went down 0-1 against the Blazers? Any concerns at all?

No, because if you saw what happened we had so many wide open shots that we missed. It wasn’t like they had good defense. We were wide open. We shot bad from the field, three-point line, and free-throw line. They shot a crazy amount of free throws and we still had a chance to win. That’s not happening four times. We’re not shooting that bad again. Plus, their depth—their minutes were so high. For us it was, let’s just take away the easy threes, the fouls off three pointers, and make these role players have to make shots, and they’re not gonna make enough twos to beat us. And that’s what ended up happening. So there was no panic. It was about being more disciplined with what we had to do. Everyone was cool, calm, collected. Nobody was losing sleep. We knew what had to be done.

Looking ahead, Dudley made his prediction on who he thinks his team will be facing in round two -- the Houston Rockets.

Who do you think you’re playing in the second round?

Houston. I think Houston’s the better team.

With James Harden, Russell Westbrook, Eric Gordon, and Robert Covington, the Rockets certainly brings a lot to the table. They're rich in depth, have fully committed to their small-ball strategy, and are hungry to take advantage of a West void of the Golden State Warriors.

As great as the Lakers looked against Portland, will that carry over in their series against Houston? It remains to be seen, but the Lakers are going to have to come out strong from the start if they want to be victorious.