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Frank Vogel Expects The Lakers To ‘Return To Form’ With Big Man Lineups Against Denver

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The Western Conference Finals are set, and after a couple of more days of watching the Clippers get eviscerated on social media, we can turn our full attention to a series that hardly any of us would’ve anticipated, one that is perfectly emblematic of the way chaos continues to reign supreme inside the NBA Bubble in Orlando.

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before, but the playoffs are all about adjustments, and teams that are unwilling or unable to fine-tune their rotations and/or their playbooks, no matter how talented or how well-executed, tend to find a one-way ticket home. The Los Angeles Lakers, for instance, understood this reality when they enacted their own small-ish lineup to counteract the Rockets in the second round.

It’s a move that helped earn them a spot in the conference finals, where they will encounter a different animal entirely, one led by a 7-foot play-making colossus for which there are no easy solutions. But Frank Vogel understands that he’ll have to demonstrate some flexibility once again if wants any chance of slowing Nikola Jokic and company, and that will likely require deploying some combination of JaVale McGee and Dwight Howard.

Via Dave McMenamin of ESPN:

“‘Joker’ is one of the most unique players in the world, and one of the most unique players ever to play the center position in this league,” Vogel said Wednesday. “He can basically hurt you in all ways. He can hurt you at the 3-point line, in the pocket, playing the 4-on-3 game in the post, and obviously with his passing. …

“It does make this series a little different — a lot different, actually — in terms of how much we’ll use our centers. I don’t want to get too much into detail, but obviously we’re going to be the L.A. Lakers, who we’ve been all year. We adjusted to a small-ball team last series, but I would expect us to return to form.”

Though Howard and McGee saw scant playing time against the Rockets, they’d both been a critical part of L.A.’s run to the No. 1 seed in the West during the regular season. They’ve each mostly taken it in stride, although Howard was candid during a recent interview about his struggles to stay positive during this stretch while also dealing with the isolation of the Bubble.

Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals tips off Friday at 9 p.m. ET on TNT.

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Chicago Fire Season 9: 3 questions we have about the upcoming season

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CHICAGO FIRE — “Protect a Child” Episode 817 — (Photo by: Adrian S. Burrows Sr./NBC)

Chicago Fire is officially returning on Nov. 11, and we’re itching to know what’s going to happen in Season 9.

For Chicago Fire fans, the past several months have been rough. Not knowing when the show would resume filming, after being upended by the pandemic, had everyone feeling anxious.

But fear not, fans, the moment has arrived! The show’s production picked back up in September, and our fervent friends at Firehouse 51 will be back on our screens in less than two months.

Check out our top three questions for Chicago Fire Season 9 below!

With a new season comes new storylines, and we have a few questions about what’s in store for our favorite firefighters and paramedics in Season 9.

1. Chicago Fire Season 9: Will we get a Stellaride proposal?

Lt. Kelly Severide started out as a suave ladies man, bedding beautiful women left and right. He tried being monogamous a few times. It didn’t quite stick. But that all changed when Severide’s sassy, spunky former crush Stella Kidd arrived at Firehouse 51.

In true drama TV fashion, though, the two first took us on a relationship rollercoaster ride for nearly two seasons. But they eventually came to their senses and got serious.

Stellaride fans rejoiced!

It’s a ship worth rooting for, as Kidd and Severide are a great match. They are both strong people with strong personalities. But they also both have big hearts and are supportive of each other.

And despite all the back and forth, and highs and lows, the pair seemed to finally be on solid ground in Season 8. Not even Severide’s pretty OFI partner, Lt. Wendy Seager, who was bold enough to hit on him in front of Kidd, could shake them.

CHICAGO FIRE — “Hold Our Ground” Episode 810 — Pictured: (l-r) Taylor Kinney as Lt. Kelly Severide, Miranda Rae Mayo as Stella Kidd — (Photo by: Adrian Burrows/NBC)

It only makes sense that Stellaride would consider taking the next step in their relationship soon. And Severide did mention having kids and grandkids with Kidd. So, let’s hope Season 9 brings the couple closer to that scenario.

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Watch the trailer for the new Game of Thrones oral history book!

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Fire Cannot Kill a Dragon has unfettered access to the people who brought Game of Thrones to life. It’s shaping up to be the definitive history of the show.

Very soon, Game of Thrones fans everywhere will be able to read Fire Cannot Kill a Dragon: Game of Thrones and the Untold Story of the Epic Series, an extensive oral history of the show put together by Entertainment Weekly’s James Hibberd, who for years had unparalleled access to the cast and crew; like, I’m seriously jealous of how often he was allowed to visit the set.

Envy aside, that access gave him the ability to talk directly to the actors, writers and crew members responsible for bringing the show to life, and it looks like he’s produced a book that will be the definitive take on the history of this show. The few excerpts released so far have been fantastic, from an exploration of the disastrous, unaired pilot to an explanation of why the showrunners chose to cut Lady Stoneheart to a deep dive into the making of “Blackwater,” one of the show’s early pivotal episodes.

And now, the book has a trailer. Watch below:

Honestly, I’ve always thought it was a little weird for books to have trailers, but in this case I’ll make an exception. As if all the behind-the-scenes stories weren’t enough to get me interested in the book, the never-before-seen photos push me over the top.

Fire Cannot Kill a Dragon: Game of Thrones and the Untold Story of the Epic Series (or just Fire Cannot Kill a Dragon for short, because man that title is long) is published by Dutton. It’ll be out in stores on October 6.

Next: The Chronicles of Narnia books, ranked worst to best

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The Good Doctor Works Through the COVID-19 Crisis in First Season 4 Teaser

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Dr. Shaun Murphy is in head-to-toe personal protective equipment and ready to work through the COVID-19 pandemic, in TVLine’s exclusive first look at The Good Doctor Season 4.

As TVLine was first to report, the two-part Season 4 opener (airing Monday, Nov. 2, at 10/9c) will focus on the coronavirus pandemic. The above teaser trailer finds Shaun with a patient who may or may not have contracted COVID. The fourth-year resident is also sporting a new photo badge so he can be identified while keeping his surgical mask on at all times.

The Good Doctor is, of course, no stranger to quarantining, having previously combatted a deadly virus midway through its second season. More recently, the doctors of St. Bonaventure endured a powerful earthquake that claimed the life of Dr. Neil Melendez (original series regular Nicholas Gonzalez) in the Season 3 finale.

Back in March, exec producer David Shore shared with TVLine that Season 4 would find Shaun in a “supervisory role” as he enters his fourth year of residency, while also navigating his new romance with Lea. We can also expect Lim and Andrews to take Claire and Morgan under their respective wings, as Park continues to struggle with the distance between him and his family.

The Freddie Highmore-led medical drama returned to production in Vancouver on Sept. 2; cast members including Antonia Thomas (Claire), Fiona Gubelmann (Morgan) and Christina Chang (Lim) have shared behind-the-scenes photos from the set, which you can see here.

Press PLAY on the video above to watch the first new Good Doctor promo, then hit the comments with your hopes for Season 4.

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