How Can the Los Angeles Lakers Solve Their Obvious 3-Point Problem?

Acceptance is the first step to self-correction.

The Los Angeles Lakers have a three-point shooting issue. More specifically, they have a "We're actively going to eschew three-pointers, ignoring endless scores of data and logic that explicitly implore us to do the opposite" issue.

There. The admission portion of Los Angeles' problem-purging process is out of the way. It's time to tackle more pressing matters.

Like how the Lakers can save themselves, from themselves.


Yeah, It's a Problem

First and foremost, operating on the assumption that my words alone aren't your gospel, we as responsible basketball buffs must also acknowledge this is a huge problem.

"Our game plan is really to get to that basket," Lakers coach Byron Scott said after Los Angeles' preseason opener, per the Los Angeles Times' Eric Pincus. "I like the fact that we only shot 10 threes. If we shoot between 10 and 15, I think that's a good mixture of getting to that basket and shooting threes."

True to Scott's spine-spooking declaration, the Lakers have spent the entire preseason not shooting threes. Through five contests, they've attempted 42 treys, or 8.4 a night. They are 2-3 while abiding by Scott's bomb-opposing offense.

Only one team shot fewer than 15 three-pointers last season—the Memphis Grizzlies—and their offense ranked a middling 17th in efficiency. The last squad to hoist 10 or fewer three-pointers per game was the 2006-07 Philadelphia 76ers. They won 35 games. In fact, the last team to disregard the three-ball that much and finish with a winning record is the 2003-04 Utah Jazz. More than 10 years separates them from today's NBA.

Yet Scott still swears by his offensive approach, per ESPN Los Angeles' Baxter Holmes:

Some of what he says is true. Three-point shooting won't win championships on its own. Nor will defense...

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