Mark Heisler’s stunning, shocking pick: The Lakers!


* Season series: Lakers, 3-1.

* Buzz: Upset special! Every postseason I like to give you my Guaranteed-Only-I Know-About-This Special, and here it is: Lakers in six or fewer. Actually, the Lakers are slight betting favorites, but if you watch TV these days, you’d think the Nuggets have turned into the Lakers, and vice versa. The Nuggets have been so impressive, a cult has grown up around them, with myths like “they’re as big as the Lakers.” Assuming Andrew Bynum keeps playing well enough to start, the Nuggets are a lot shorter. With Nene and Chris Andersen rarely together, the second-tallest Nugget will be Kenyon Martin, who’s 6-7 1/2 in bare feet, or Linas Kleiza. The Lakers keep two big men on the floor, rotating Bynum, Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom. With Gasol and Bynum, both low-post players, they can literally play over the Nuggets’ heads. Advantages notwithstanding, the Lakers have to play well, and they hadn’t often this postseason before Sunday. When they do, however, it stops being about anyone else.

-- Mark Heisler