The Lakers held an 88-85 lead over the Celtics with 5:58 remaining in the 4th quarter. From that point on, the Celtics outscored them 18-6.
How were they able to dominate the final minutes? Aside from Rajon Rondo's stellar play, the Lakers made several mistakes. The most glaring error? Not taking advantage of Pau Gasol.
Pau played a dominating game (25 points, 8 rebounds and 6 blocks), yet he took just one shot (a meaningless three pointer with 17 seconds left and the Lakers down 9) in the 4th.
One problem; Gasol sat for half the quarter. Phil Jackson kept him on the bench in lieu of Lamar Odom until the 5:58 mark. Granted Gasol played 42 minutes and likely needed the rest, but Jackson MUST have his series MVP (at this point) on the floor for a longer stretch in crunch time.
Another problem: Kobe tried to close out the Celtics. Bryant had 8 points in the 4th but shot 1-5 over the final 4 minutes. Foul trouble kept him out of rhythm for most of the night, but that didn't stop Bryant from ignoring his big man and jacking up shots.