Nobody can stop the Lakers

May 15, 2001 10:06 AM

NBA

L.A. Lakers’ destruction of the Portland Trailblazers and Sacramento Kings makes the NBA playoffs child’s play!

Lakers become the first team to go through the playoffs undefeated?

No way! Don’t sell them short. San Antonio is next on the Lakers menu.

In other playoff series, Milwaukee Bucks and Charlotte Hornets in doubt; going with Hornets.

The Toronto Raptors and Philadelphia 76ers series tied 2-2. Our selection was 76ers early and now we are doubly positive that Sixers will beat Raptors and winner of Hornets and Bucks series will bite dust.

However, with Lakers lying in wait, Sixers will be eliminated in four. Like Muhammad Ali says, open the playground door and the Sixers fall in four.

Baseball

Cubs starting to reach their potential or is it (descend). Cubs’ run ending early, warmer weather caught up to their pitching, and their hitters are nothing. Twins, Phillies continue to surprise, both have better hitters and stronger pitching. It’s not a sprint, 162 games is a long season.

Arizona Diamondbacks at Chicago Cubs: No respite for Cubbies’ followers who will face a double dose of Curt Schilling and Randy Johnson. No rest here, Cubs slide further down the ladder before there is any chance of climbing up.

San Diego Padres at Montreal Expos: Padres were on a roll, but then got hit with a nine-walk no-hitter, and all thoughts of reaching .500 went up in smoke. Expos with Tony Armas Jr. and Britt Reames push Padres further back, below 500.

St. Louis Cardinals at Philadelphia Phillies: Early test for these two teams not crucial, but important. Sweep by either team could be a big shot in the arm for continued success throughout rest of the season. Philly pitching has the edge in this series, Omar Daal and Randy Wolf can win two; however, Mark McGwire could be back in the lineup. If so, a big boost.

Colorado Rockies at Florida Marlins: Rockies tough at home, so-so on the road. Have picked up their road play this year. A.J. Burnett makes his first start since tossing that unbelievable nine-walk no-hitter vs. the Padres. Rockies will test Mr. Burnett. Don’t like his chances here. Going with Brad Penny for a Marlin win.

Milwaukee Brewers at Pittsburgh Pirates: Brewers a threat to win N.L. Central. Got another boost with the pitching of Ben Sheets, who has won four in a row after losing his first two starts. Another win goes to Jimmy Haynes.

Los Angeles Dodgers at New York Mets: Dodgers can’t get out of the way of falling buildings on the road, while Mets are a team in disarray, going nowhere in a hurry. Chancy proposition with these two teams, however, Kevin Brown is pitching lights out. Circle him.

San Francisco Giants at Atlanta Braves: Braves look so bad this season. Chancy proposition at best. Going against Greg Maddux and Odalis Perez double play with Russ Ortiz on mound.

Cincinnati Reds at Houston Astros: Reds better on the road than at home. However, pitching in bad shape for Cincy. Going with Scott Elarton and Kent Bottenfield.

Minnesota Twins at Baltimore Orioles: Looks like an easy series for Twins; however, baseball is a strange game. Look for O’s to win two by beating the "aces" of the Twins staff Eric Milton and Brad Radke.

Detroit Tigers at Tampa Bay Devil Rays: Tigers on a hot streak of late. Visit a spot where they can make hay. Jeff Weaver and Dave Mlicki (who has won last three) grab a couple from the Devil Rays.

Toronto Blue Jays at Texas Rangers: Rangers have been an underachiever all season and with no pitching will stay that way the rest of the season, I don’t care how many Rodriguez’s they get, last place is their home. Forget about sides here, over in the totals in all three.

Boston Red Sox at Kansas City Royals: Royals going through a terrible losing streak. Games figure to go over the total with the exception of game Pedro Martinez hurls, and that’s no cinch to go under.

New York Yankees at Seattle Mariners: Can New York stop the hot Mariners? Not at this time. Going against "El Duque" and Todd Lilly.

Chicago White Sox at Oakland Athletics: A’s turning things around. Ditto White Sox. A’s stand to gain ground with Glenn Mulder and Barry Zito pitching.

Cleveland Indians at Anaheim Angels: Indians beating patsies at home; as visitors face tougher competition. Jarrod Washburn and Ramon Ortiz team up to stop Indian uprising.