Kobe Bryant Is No Longer the Focal Point of the Los Angeles Lakers

Even Kobe himself has admitted it.

The Los Angeles Lakers' offense starts first and foremost with Andrew Bynum, Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom. Not Kobe Bryant.


Since the All-Star break Bynum has averaged almost 13 boards a game, while Pau and Odom have continued to stay aggressive. Bryant's scoring has gone down by more than two points.

In terms of total offensive production, the Lakers' Big Three have contributed more percentage wise than before the All-Star break. Despite Kobe shooting, and missing, more.

The bottom line is that, despite Kobe's tremendous talents and clutch abilities, he no longer should be the focal point of the offense. It never should have been to begin with. Pau Gasol and the big men should be.

And when Kobe no longer is the one holding the ball the longest, the Lakers play better, have better ball movement, take less insane shots and win more.

The Lakers won the finals the last two years simply because of the post presence of Gasol, Bynum and Odom. Without them, Kobe would have been hapless against the Boston defense, and Dwight Howard would have overrun the Lakers.

It's not Kobe's team anymore. He may still be the most recognized player on that team. He may still be treated by everybody in the media and fans as the greatest Laker. But now, more than ever, the Lakers' success depends on their front court triumvirate.

It's Pau's team.

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