How the LA Lakers Are Winning with Smoke and Mirrors

The Los Angeles Lakers have been average to start the 2013-14 campaign, and in reality, this occurrence is nothing more than a mirage.

Entering the season, the expectation from the masses was that Los Angeles would be one of the worst teams in the Western Conference.

Indeed, Dwight Howard’s free-agency departure in favour of the Houston Rockets plus Kobe Bryant’s recovery from Achilles surgery were enough for’s panel of basketball analysts to project the Lakers to finish 12th in the West.

And yet, the Purple and Gold has not been that bad in 2013-14. They are a mediocre bunch as opposed to an unmitigated disaster. However, this cannot hold up.


Offensive Offense

The Lakers have been subpar on offense despite the fact that their long-range shooting has been great. Three-point shooting has proved to be the great equalizer, and thus, Mike D’Antoni has used it.

The Lakers are among the leaders in attempts from downtown and conversion rate from that distance. That is the lone thing this team can hang its hat on.

Indeed, Pau Gasol and Co. have stayed in games thanks in large part to their ability to connect from distance, but that is hardly sufficient even for a team vying for one of the last playoff spots.

As Charles Barkley loves to reminds us during TNT’s Inside the NBA: “You live by jumpers and die by jumpers.” The Lakers do not do anything else well enough on offense to complement their trey-heavy mentality, and as a result, it’s a mess.

They simply do not score enough to enjoy any level of consistent success going forward. Granted, they have surprised a few teams on their home floor by posting some impressive point totals (north of 110 points), but that was mostly a product of the lack of defensive attention of the opposition.

Steve Nash will miss a...

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