Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby Texas Lakers Fan on Tue Jan 01, 2013 6:17 am

This is a theory I have on the Lakers struggles and inconsistency this season. I honestly believe that after we signed/traded for Steve Nash and then also traded for Dwight Howard everyone kind of felt like we were the team to beat even though we had yet to play a game together. If you all remember correctly our two championships teams particually the 2009 one had a real issue playing down to the competition. Remember that Rocket team without Yao Ming and Tracy McGrady taking us to the brink of elimination because we thought it would be easy? I think that same thing has happened this season. When you got all this talent on a roster I think you feel like we don't gotta play hard every night. We can just beat teams on talent. I think when you compound that with losing a great player and leader like Steve Nash. You have a team that while talented, but lacking depth and leadership at the point guard position and it was a pretty horrendous start. 9-14. Since than though 6-1. I believe they're starting to realize we can't take teams for granted anymore. We gotta go out there compete, execute, and if you do that you'll start winning games consistently which has been the case since Steve Nash has been back.

Despite the mediocre record I still fully expect a championship.
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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby KB24 on Tue Jan 01, 2013 6:29 am

no, don't pull the complacency excuse card please...its inaccurate and a broken record here on CL.

This team doesn't play defense, plain and simple. They lack speed, athleticism and energy and its got nothing to do with them thinking they are awesome.
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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby Texas Lakers Fan on Tue Jan 01, 2013 6:39 am

KB24 wrote:no, don't pull the complacency excuse card please...its inaccurate and a broken record here on CL.

This team doesn't play defense, plain and simple. They lack speed, athleticism and energy and its got nothing to do with them thinking they are awesome.

I disagree. Defense is all about effort and that has been in the main problem this season. We weren't really that much more fast or athlete in 2009 and 2010.
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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby wcsoldier81 on Tue Jan 01, 2013 6:48 am

^^^^ the league has changed ... this is a young , fast and athletic oriented NBA now ... if you don't have any of it especially on the perimeter , you can't defend at a good level on a consistent basis .

The lack of speed and athleticism at the 1 all the way to the 4 position is the main reason of our back to back 2nd round exits ... this pb still hasn't been fixed and early playoffs exits will continue until it has
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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby v1n5anity on Tue Jan 01, 2013 7:52 am

Lol what? No team is dumb enough to be complacent while playing less than .500 ball for the majority of the season when they have championship aspirations. Especially on a team full of guys who want to win.
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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby tigerjeterkobe on Tue Jan 01, 2013 9:00 am

The main problem has been coaching, followed by injuries, followed by no bench, followed by no athleticism and speed, followed by Kobe, Ron, Gasol, and Dwight taking plays off on defense because they are tired or frustrated.

Coaching -- Brown had them confused, frustrated, and the role players playing without confidence because of no rotation consistency. They have been constantly LEARNING and trying to find themselves (other than Kobe). They are not playing freely -- like OKC, Heat, Knicks, Clips, GS, SA, etc. Most of that has to do with a system they trust and know, and a solid PG who won't let the ball get stuck. See below.

Injuries -- Nash, Blake, Gasol, Dwight stil not at 100%. That caused guys to play out of position and lots of minutes, while also trying to learn new offenses. Not good combinations when running against confident, young, athletic teams. I have said this before -- how many teams out there would win consistently without their starting AND backup PGs? Clips without CP3 and Bledsoe? Spurs without Parker? Knicks without Felton and Kidd? OKC without Westbrook? GS without Curry and Jack? Boston without Rondo? Except for perhaps the Heat, no team in the NBA is winning consistently with ONLY their 3rd and 4th string (D-LEAGUE) PGs. With LAL even more so, it is problematic because only Kobe is fully capable of getting his own shot. Dwight, Gasol (more now than other years), Hill, Jamison, Meeks, all need to be set up (absent offense board put backs). Metta is a disaster most times he puts the ball on the floor and tries to create. Kobe has been getting his but still making some plays for others, along with Gasol, but not like a true PG does.

Bench -- guys like Ebanks, Morris, CHRIS DUHON, Sacre have all seen big minutes at times. But each is a D-League player, at best. Morris can defend, and is improving. But he doesn't really belong on the court with this team of stars and with these expectations. Duhon, Ebanks, and Sacre are lucky to even be in the NBA. And Meeks is a one-dimensional player who is good for 15 mins per, not 25 or more, esp. because of the defensive liability and his terrible ball handling.

They also don't take advantage of Diwght and Gasol enough and settle for too many jump shots which lead to transition buckets the other way.

Other than when Bernie let them play free and fun, they are just injured, out of position, confused, frustrated with so many new systems, not playing inside out, not helping properly on D, and lacking talented back ups. Effort and over-confidence are not as obvious to me as learning to play together with actual talent on the floor.
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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby 432J on Tue Jan 01, 2013 10:06 am

you guys all know what i'm going to say about why this team is so inconsistent
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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby Lakeshow24 on Tue Jan 01, 2013 10:41 am

KB24 wrote:no, don't pull the complacency excuse card please...its inaccurate and a broken record here on CL.

This team doesn't play defense, plain and simple. They lack speed, athleticism and energy and its got nothing to do with them thinking they are awesome.


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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby lotus on Tue Jan 01, 2013 10:42 am

Two poor coaching hires by the same guy. And and a roster not built for either.
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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby JGC on Tue Jan 01, 2013 10:46 am

Yeah, I think the issue with the team not competing or giving effort is a symptom of a problem, not the cause of the problem.

The reason we see lapses on the defensive end, IMO, has more to do with the offensive end than anything else. We are often completely out of sync on the offensive end. There hasn't been much rhythm or flow. And when you have an offensive minded team like we do, their focus trails off when things are out of order. People look at the box score and see a high number of points and think the offense isn't the problem but you have to look at how those points were produced. Was it produced by great ball movement with multiple teammates involved in every possession? I don't think that is always the case. It was produced because we have a number of offensively talented individuals.

When you have an offensive minded team, they will play defense and communicate and give extra effort when things are clicking offensively. With a defensive minded team, the opposite is true. When things are clicking on all cylinders defensively, suddenly you have guys who may not be otherwise offensively talented scoring points.

The key to getting this team to playing good defense is to get in to rhythm offensively. Get people involved. Move the ball. This prevents people from standing around. When the ball doesn't move, people stand around and it carries through to the defensive end.

And one more thing, the 6-1 is a bit of a mirage. We nearly lost to a team that has lost 18 straight. We had to outscore the Bobcats by 8 in the fourth quarter to beat them by a point. At home. We lost two of the four quarters to the worst team in the league while playing at home. We didn't even play well, we just played well enough to win. That's not an indication of turning things around.

I do think this team can turn it around but I don't think a championship this year is very likely at all. We're looking at a lower half seed and the success rate of lower half seeds is very, very low. I can't think of any championship team that has gone through the struggles this team has this season and ended up winning. Are there any? Has a team ever played nearly 40% of a season, not once been above .500, and won the championship? Did they have 3 head coaches by this time? Did they have the injuries and health concerns this team has had?

It certainly looks like a long shot for this year but hey, history is made all the time so I guess that's what we've gotta do. :jam2:

But if you're right and the issue with this team is giving effort because they're playing down to the level of their competition, then I sure hope they realize that it's now a long shot from here and thus give the type of effort and competitiveness every single night from here on out.
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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby Lakerjones on Tue Jan 01, 2013 10:48 am

Well, I don't think there needs to be too much thought into it. The main contributors to our mediocre record are:

Starting the season off with a confused coach who was in over his head. He was trying to stick a square peg in a round hole with Nash and the Princeton, and he couldn't figure out rotations to save his life. He couldn't win a game seemingly to save his life either and thus he was canned.

And we got hit with the dreaded injury bug - the main thing that we all felt could derail this team and did.
Nash going down was an enormous blow. Worse even than Mike Brown's coaching.

Oh yeah, and Pau's knees went bad also as a result of Mike Brown's "every day, all day" practice routine. Nice parting gift for us Mike.

Then when the team was freed from the bad coach they started playing some beautiful basketball under Bernie B who just allowed them to do their thing and play loose. He substituted in a rational manner with the bench guys and as a result racked up a bunch of wins.

Then we got D' Antoni who instituted another system that at least on the surface seemed like a poor fit for the personnel. Without Nash they were a complete disaster as Antoni doesn't emphasize any D, and Kobe had to run the offense resulting in an enormous amount of turnovers and opponents' transition basketball - this veteran team's achilles heel. The offense itself helped contribute to our poor defense.

D' Antoni just doesn't seem capable of winning without Nash. This much is very clear.

So it's a great thing that Nash has returned - both for us as fans and for the Lakers.

Other than that the jury is out. We've been playing some much better ball with Nash at the helm, and no one really knows what the team is capable of if we have full health with guys like Pau and Howard. But then again, we don't know if we'll see full health from either of them. Even if they are close to full speed we should be very dangerous.

Regardless we have some big time catching up to do. Let's hope we can get back up in the standings. I'd love nothing more than to see this team go all the way.
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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby karacha on Tue Jan 01, 2013 11:09 am

We can all agree that Lakers are inconsistent. Why is that? In my opinion there are really only three reasons:

1. We had many injuries and very limited time to develop chemistry. And, as we all know, chemistry is absolutely essential if you have championship aspirations.

2. Coaching change and a completely different system in place. This is big, obviously. MDA might not be the best coach in the world, but he's OK... better then Brown, for sure. His style is totally different though and now players have to adapt again. This is not easy to do.

3. This one might be the most important: With Steve Nash running the point, the Lakers are the most potent offensive team in the league, believe it or not. Currently, the best overall ORtg team is OKC with 110.1, which is really impressive. Our team, with Nash has an ORtg of 113.3. But due to the lack of chemistry (mentioned earlier) and therefore the lack of communication, our defense is slightly below average. This has to change. We don't need to be the top defensive team in the league, but slightly above average with better communication would do.
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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby 432J on Tue Jan 01, 2013 11:15 am

lotus wrote:Two poor coaching hires by the same guy. And and a roster not built for either.
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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby Lakerjones on Tue Jan 01, 2013 11:18 am

karacha wrote:We can all agree that Lakers are inconsistent. Why is that? In my opinion there are really only three reasons:

1. We had many injuries and very limited time to develop chemistry. And, as we all know, chemistry is absolutely essential if you have championship aspirations.

2. Coaching change and a completely different system in place. This is big, obviously. MDA might not be the best coach in the world, but he's OK... better then Brown, for sure. His style is totally different though and now players have to adapt again. This is not easy to do.

3. This one might be the most important: With Steve Nash running the point, the Lakers are the most potent offensive team in the league, believe it or not. Currently, the best overall ORtg team is OKC with 110.1, which is really impressive. Our team, with Nash has an ORtg of 113.3. But due to the lack of chemistry (mentioned earlier) and therefore the lack of communication, our defense is slightly below average. This has to change. We don't need to be the top defensive team in the league, but slightly above average with better communication would do.


^^ Great post Karacha. :bow:
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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby karacha on Tue Jan 01, 2013 11:21 am

The only question is: is our team too old to become better defensively, on a consistent basis? Do we have the speed and athleticism? That is the main issue here. But then, the Celtics were pretty good defensively few years ago, and they were fairly old and not very athletic, save for Rondo.
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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby Punk-101 on Tue Jan 01, 2013 11:34 am

JGC wrote:Yeah, I think the issue with the team not competing or giving effort is a symptom of a problem, not the cause of the problem.

The reason we see lapses on the defensive end, IMO, has more to do with the offensive end than anything else. We are often completely out of sync on the offensive end. There hasn't been much rhythm or flow. And when you have an offensive minded team like we do, their focus trails off when things are out of order.

When you have an offensive minded team, they will play defense and communicate and give extra effort when things are clicking offensively. With a defensive minded team, the opposite is true. When things are clicking on all cylinders defensively, suddenly you have guys who may not be otherwise offensively talented scoring points.

The key to getting this team to playing good defense is to get in to rhythm offensively. Get people involved. Move the ball. This prevents people from standing around. When the ball doesn't move, people stand around and it carries through to the defensive end.

I was going to type something similar, but now I don't have to. Well put.

I'll add a little something that ties the OP's point to yours. Your symptom/cause point is kind of a chicken/egg thing. I think a team that thinks they have the talent to beat teams without much effort or focus tends to execute on offense relying on mostly talent, rather than team cohesiveness. Metta gave an overly candid radio interview with John Ireland where he admitted that the "ups and downs" were due to thinking the team can just show up with enough talent to beat teams. That attitude leads to all the things you mentioned, and all the things you mentioned lead to more of that attitude; ie "ARGH, whey isn't this working? We/I have the talent to win, so I'm going to use it!"
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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby Lakerjones on Tue Jan 01, 2013 11:41 am

karacha wrote:The only question is: is our team too old to become better defensively, on a consistent basis? Do we have the speed and athleticism? That is the main issue here. But then, the Celtics were pretty good defensively few years ago, and they were fairly old and not very athletic, save for Rondo.


^^ True about the Celtics. Which is why I don't think it's a hopeless cause. However, you have to look at the coaching, too in this regard.

The Celtics had Thibodeau at the helm on that end. They had a brilliant defensive mind on board and they all bought into the scheme even though none were spring chickens.

"Antoni no D" has never been one to emphasize that end of the court. I'm guessing that Chuck Person might be in charge of the D, but it really hasn't been talked about much. Chuck did a good job I thought under Phil, but I guess we'll see.

These guys only have so much energy given their age. D' Antoni seems to want them to spend most of it on the other end pushing tempo. Something's got to give. Maybe after these guys are more comfortable with the offensive system they can strike more of a balance on the other end.

The defense is one of the reasons I was so adamant that we should go after Sloan as coach. I thought his offense was better suited to the personnel and more half court oriented. Then on D I thought he could work with these guys and get the most out of them.
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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby puffyusaf#2 on Tue Jan 01, 2013 11:42 am

karacha wrote:We can all agree that Lakers are inconsistent. Why is that? In my opinion there are really only three reasons:

1. We had many injuries and very limited time to develop chemistry. And, as we all know, chemistry is absolutely essential if you have championship aspirations.

2. Coaching change and a completely different system in place. This is big, obviously. MDA might not be the best coach in the world, but he's OK... better then Brown, for sure. His style is totally different though and now players have to adapt again. This is not easy to do.

3. This one might be the most important: With Steve Nash running the point, the Lakers are the most potent offensive team in the league, believe it or not. Currently, the best overall ORtg team is OKC with 110.1, which is really impressive. Our team, with Nash has an ORtg of 113.3. But due to the lack of chemistry (mentioned earlier) and therefore the lack of communication, our defense is slightly below average. This has to change. We don't need to be the top defensive team in the league, but slightly above average with better communication would do.

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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby charvin on Tue Jan 01, 2013 12:21 pm

They pretty much had 2 defensive coordinators. One in Thibodeau, and one in Garnett. That was the important thing - Garnett held you accountable if you were playing poorly. If just one person stepped up (eg. Howard) and directed them to where they should be, it may work wonders.

Lakerjones wrote:
karacha wrote:The only question is: is our team too old to become better defensively, on a consistent basis? Do we have the speed and athleticism? That is the main issue here. But then, the Celtics were pretty good defensively few years ago, and they were fairly old and not very athletic, save for Rondo.


^^ True about the Celtics. Which is why I don't think it's a hopeless cause. However, you have to look at the coaching, too in this regard.

The Celtics had Thibodeau at the helm on that end. They had a brilliant defensive mind on board and they all bought into the scheme even though none were spring chickens.

"Antoni no D" has never been one to emphasize that end of the court. I'm guessing that Chuck Person might be in charge of the D, but it really hasn't been talked about much. Chuck did a good job I thought under Phil, but I guess we'll see.

These guys only have so much energy given their age. D' Antoni seems to want them to spend most of it on the other end pushing tempo. Something's got to give. Maybe after these guys are more comfortable with the offensive system they can strike more of a balance on the other end.

The defense is one of the reasons I was so adamant that we should go after Sloan as coach. I thought his offense was better suited to the personnel and more half court oriented. Then on D I thought he could work with these guys and get the most out of them.
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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby The Rock on Tue Jan 01, 2013 12:37 pm

Injuries and having like 20 different starting lineups

Nash/Kobe/Gasol/Howard/Metta
Blake/Kobe/Gasol/Howard/Metta
Morris/Kobe/Gasol/Howard/Metta
Duhon/Kobe/Jamison/Howard/Metta
Duhon/Kobe/Hill/Howard/Metta
Duhon/ Kobe/Ebanks/Howard/Metta
Duhon/Kobe/Gasol/Howard/Ebanks
Nash/Morris/Gasol/Howard/Kobe

Injuries injuries injuries and Mike Brown. No other reasons

Howard hasn't been 100%, Pau missed a handful of games, Nash missed like 25 games. Mitch and Jim constructed this team to have these 3 guys play a huge role for this team and they haven't been able to...obviously the drop off between them and Hill, Metta, Duhon, Morris, etc is HUGE thats why we have been inconsistent and our record hasn't been impressive...we've won 6 of the last 7 thanks to some continuity! I have no doubt in my mind if we stay healthy the rest of the way and the playoffs we're the best team in the league
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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby pound4pound1 on Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:26 pm

the coaching changes is a factor but honestly, the reasons why we suck [Swearing is not permitted at Clublakers. You must edit this post prior to submitting.] right now;



we dont play defense
we dont take care of the ball
we dont make free throws



we'd probably be like 5-6 games above .500 if we only hit FTs
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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby Finwë on Tue Jan 01, 2013 4:56 pm

JGC wrote:Yeah, I think the issue with the team not competing or giving effort is a symptom of a problem, not the cause of the problem.

The reason we see lapses on the defensive end, IMO, has more to do with the offensive end than anything else. We are often completely out of sync on the offensive end. There hasn't been much rhythm or flow. And when you have an offensive minded team like we do, their focus trails off when things are out of order. People look at the box score and see a high number of points and think the offense isn't the problem but you have to look at how those points were produced. Was it produced by great ball movement with multiple teammates involved in every possession? I don't think that is always the case. It was produced because we have a number of offensively talented individuals.

When you have an offensive minded team, they will play defense and communicate and give extra effort when things are clicking offensively. With a defensive minded team, the opposite is true. When things are clicking on all cylinders defensively, suddenly you have guys who may not be otherwise offensively talented scoring points.

The key to getting this team to playing good defense is to get in to rhythm offensively. Get people involved. Move the ball. This prevents people from standing around. When the ball doesn't move, people stand around and it carries through to the defensive end.

And one more thing, the 6-1 is a bit of a mirage. We nearly lost to a team that has lost 18 straight. We had to outscore the Bobcats by 8 in the fourth quarter to beat them by a point. At home. We lost two of the four quarters to the worst team in the league while playing at home. We didn't even play well, we just played well enough to win. That's not an indication of turning things around.

I do think this team can turn it around but I don't think a championship this year is very likely at all. We're looking at a lower half seed and the success rate of lower half seeds is very, very low. I can't think of any championship team that has gone through the struggles this team has this season and ended up winning. Are there any? Has a team ever played nearly 40% of a season, not once been above .500, and won the championship? Did they have 3 head coaches by this time? Did they have the injuries and health concerns this team has had?

It certainly looks like a long shot for this year but hey, history is made all the time so I guess that's what we've gotta do. :jam2:

But if you're right and the issue with this team is giving effort because they're playing down to the level of their competition, then I sure hope they realize that it's now a long shot from here and thus give the type of effort and competitiveness every single night from here on out.

"It's all Kobe's fault", basically :man10:

No, I think a bunch of games this season completely disprove your theory JGC. Take the Denver game for example. We played great on offense, scored consistently and effectively, moved the ball around pretty well and tried to get a lot of guys involved (some hit shots, some didn't). But it ended up being our worst defenisve performance of the year.
Or take games like the ones against Houston or Phoenix. VERY high scoring games, effectively so, moving the ball and getting a bunch of role players involved but played pretty poorly on D, allowing a lot of points. We won those games, but still, our effort on D was POOR.
In Philly we had role players rolling, hitting 3s from everywhere, but still we let Nick Young torch us and didn't really play good D.

There are many examples like that one.
I understand, this all goes back to your main agenda: "not moving the ball enough is THE problem" - "Kobe doesn't play within the team concept, doesn't move the ball enough" - "kobe is the problem". LOL.
I think many posters here would agree that directly or indirectly that ends up being your target point.
But it's false.

Defense is our main problem, and no, it's not suffering because of our offense. :nono2:
It's a matter of athleticism, apparent lack of urgency in that end in certain games(from both players and the coach), no chemistry on that end, guys not being healthy enough to give second and third efforts, little communication, gambling for steals, guys taking possessions off, not boxing out consistently, etc. Does ALL OF THAT stem from our offensive style? NO. Not even close.
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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby Finwë on Tue Jan 01, 2013 5:04 pm

karacha wrote:We can all agree that Lakers are inconsistent. Why is that? In my opinion there are really only three reasons:

1. We had many injuries and very limited time to develop chemistry. And, as we all know, chemistry is absolutely essential if you have championship aspirations.

2. Coaching change and a completely different system in place. This is big, obviously. MDA might not be the best coach in the world, but he's OK... better then Brown, for sure. His style is totally different though and now players have to adapt again. This is not easy to do.

3. This one might be the most important: With Steve Nash running the point, the Lakers are the most potent offensive team in the league, believe it or not. Currently, the best overall ORtg team is OKC with 110.1, which is really impressive. Our team, with Nash has an ORtg of 113.3. But due to the lack of chemistry (mentioned earlier) and therefore the lack of communication, our defense is slightly below average. This has to change. We don't need to be the top defensive team in the league, but slightly above average with better communication would do.

Great post.

karacha wrote:The only question is: is our team too old to become better defensively, on a consistent basis? Do we have the speed and athleticism? That is the main issue here. But then, the Celtics were pretty good defensively few years ago, and they were fairly old and not very athletic, save for Rondo.

No, I don't think they are. Obviously some extra athleticism would help a lot, but I still believe our defensive struggles are more mental and technical than physical.
Defense is a team thing more than anything, and thus requires chemistry and communication. We don't have that right now. It also requires attention from the coaching staff, not necessarily practicing defensive drills or stuff like that, more like addressing it and watching tape and talking to guys about it consistently. It requires health, and that we've lacked. It requires conditioning, and with our guys not being really healthy and playing big minutes, that's not there yet.

I do feel every guy in the team has bought into the common goal and therefore are truly commited to do what it takes. But it's one thing to be commited and another to effectively translate that into court action. I think we'll get better, but my guess is that with limited time and a tough schedule ahead, we won't see a great defensive team for a while. Just have to hope we can lock it down during crunch time and play well enough on offense to win.
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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby LTLakerFan on Tue Jan 01, 2013 6:40 pm

lotus wrote:Two poor coaching hires by the same guy :bang: . And and a roster not built for either.


We have a winner. Apologies to lotus for mucking up his to-the-point post with italics and banging my head on the wall in the middle of it.... :man10:
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Re: Theory On Lakers Inconsistencies

Postby Rooscooter on Tue Jan 01, 2013 8:02 pm

4 things....
A bunch of "Alpha's" learning to play together and not be primary options all the time.

Coaching inconsistencies. 3 coaches.... 2.5 systems

Injuries.... we have played 1.5 games as a full strength squad.... even then injuries were limiting a few people.

Finally, personnel not matching the system. Under MDA we don't have the kind of players he likes for his offensive sets.... rather than coach to the personnel's strengths he's hammering them to fit his system.

All of that has combined to put us in this hole. We still won't be at full strength for a few weeks either. We need time to mesh and we've seen some signs of it on offense but none on Defense. We all know Defense isn't an emphasis with this coach but what we are seeing is ridiculous at times.
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