Some Numbers, Some Health Updates and Rotation/Chemistry
Here’s a look at some of the good, bad and ugly numbers from the Lakers’ 3-11 start to the 2014-15 season:
1: Rank of L.A.’s schedule difficulty through 14 games. Opponents post a .589 win percentage, putting the Lakers well above No. 2 Sacramento (.574). At the opposite end are the New York Knicks (.412). The Lakers have played only two games against the far weaker Eastern Conference, beating both Charlotte and Atlanta, while losing 10 of 11 games against Western squads.
1.4: Blocks per game for Ed Davis in his 22.2 minutes per game, a team best.
3: Players that are out for the entire season if Xavier Henry’s Achilles injury suffered during Monday’s practice is confirmed to be a rupture, as feared. Julius Randle (fractured right tibia) and Steve Nash (back/nerve issues) have already been shut down for the year.
4.9: Assists per game for Jeremy Lin, which leads the Lakers.
15.9: Points in the paint per game for the Lakers, which ties Minnesota for second-most in the NBA. Indiana paces the league with 16.2 per game.
19: Years in the NBA for Kobe Bryant. Here were the league’s most prolific scorers in year 19 prior to Kobe: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (1987-88) – 14.6 ppg; Karl Malone (2003-04) 13.2 ppg; John Stockton (2002-03) – 10.8 ppg; Shaquille O’Neal (2010-11) – 9.2.
26.7: Bryant’s NBA-best scoring average.
35.5: Kobe’s usage rate, which tops all other players, including Indiana’s Rodney Stuckey, whose second-place rating clocks in 4.0 points behind Bryant.
35.7: Bryant’s minutes played per game, tied for 13th in the NBA.
38.1: Bryant’s field goal percentage, by far the lowest of his career.
44.0: L.A.’s field goal percentage, ranking 23rd in the NBA.
48.7: Opponent field goal percentage for the Lakers, which ranks 29th in the NBA.
104: Steals for the Lakers, the 9th most in the NBA, led by 18 from Bryant and 17 from Ronnie Price.
148: Three-pointers made by Lakers opponents, the most in the NBA. It hasn’t helped the Lakers have played so many high-scoring Western teams.
181: Offensive boards grabbed by L.A., the most in the NBA, led by Jordan Hill’s league-best 61 (4.4 per game).
218: Points needed for Kobe (32,074) to catch Michael Jordan (32,292) for third on the NBA’s all-time scoring list.
319: Games missed to injury for the Lakers in 2013-14, by far an NBA high. They’ll miss at least 231 more games with Nash, Randle and Henry alone this season, plus the 10 games Nick Young has already sat out with a thumb injury. Ryan Kelly has already missed 12 games with multiple hamstring injuries and is expected to be out at least five more weeks.
403: Free throw attempts for L.A.’s offense, ranking second in the NBA, which comes by design of Byron Scott’s offense considering the personnel. However:
408: The Lakers have allowed the most free throw attempts in the NBA.
54,708: Combined regular season and playoff minutes played by Bryant, which ranks 5th all-time behind only Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (66,297), Malone (63,493), Jason Kidd (56,199) and Wilt Chamberlain (55,418).
55,000: Miles the Lakers will fly this season traveling to road games, second in the NBA to Portland (60,000), according to Sports Illustrated.
Some picks from tweeters
@TheeCoreyH @LakersNation clarkson over price, Davis over boozer, less minutes for kobe in first to preserve energy
— ladiesman321 (@ladiesman321) November 23, 2014
@TheeCoreyH @LakersNation Start Davis. Have Boozer and Young come off bench. #LNDebate
— Will James (@WB_james22) November 23, 2014
Bring in Nick sooner, rest Kobe 3-5 more minutes a game. Give Clarkson a little run in the 2nd & 3rd quarter ax #LNDebate
— Sten (@StenBender) November 23, 2014
@TheeCoreyH @LakersNation more clarkson less Ronnie #LNDebate
— Martel (@ThoughtsofCole) November 23, 2014
@TheeCoreyH @LakersNation #LNDebate I would get Ed Davis more minutes and have him rotating in and out with Boozer
— D.R.A.K.E. (@drakescoop2323) November 23, 2014
@TheeCoreyH #LNDebate Wesley to the bench along with Boozer. Ed Davis starting and Ellington. Boozer Nick Young and Wesley control 2nd unit
— Ryan Soares (@ryangsoares) November 23, 2014
@TheeCoreyH Boozer out. Davis permanently in as a starter playing the most minutes. Our only proper defender. #LNDebate
— SEUN (@Daniel_Onas) November 23, 2014
So the notion is to bring
1) NYoung and Ellington early and reduce Kobe’s time.
2) Bring Davis to play starter, with Boozer helping from the 2nd team
3) Give Clarkson time and reduce Price minutes
4) Give Kobe a longer rest
How’s Kobe and Jeremy Chemistry
Kobe said chemistry with J. Lin is “fine.” “He & I are playing two-man action a lot & trying to take advantage of the defense that way.”
— Serena Winters (@SerenaWinters) November 24, 2014
Lin also said that adjusting to off-the-ball scenarios hasn’t been too much different from his role in Houston when playing alongside James Harden. Scott said Lin needs to continue to develop the mentality of searching for his teammates, which he thought he did a good job of in the second half of last night’s overtime loss:
Really make quick decisions, move the ball. If you got a shot, take your shot. If you got a drive, take your drive,” Scott said about the role he wants Lin to play. “First half was a little bit more trying to search for me, second half was searching for his teammates.
Xavier Henry – suffered Achilles rupture (season ending)
Ed Davis – ankle
Carlos Boozer – sore shoulder
1) Jeremy been Shooting and Scoring well!!!( eFG%=54.6; TS%=61; FG%=48.7; 3P%=38.9; FT%=87.0 )
2) More winnable games to come, namely Timberwolves (2 games), Pistons, Celtics, Pacers). Hence in the next 11 games, we should be able to seize atleast 5 wins.