Lakers News: Steve Nash Exposes LA’s Problem by Admitting Team’s Identity Issue

Exposing the root cause of the 2012-13 Los Angeles Lakers has been a conundrum that has vexed the organization for the entire year.

Expected to compete for a championship, the Lakers are desperately clinging to the hope they can capture the Western Conference's No. 8 seed. They are 29-30 heading into Sunday's game versus the Atlanta Hawks, two full games behind the Houston Rockets for that last playoff spot.

The examination of why this team is so disappointing has been bludgeoned into the ground so deep it may have found China.

The blame game has been endless. First it was Mike Brown, so they fired him and brought in Mike D'Antoni. Then it was Pau Gasol, who spent much of his season on the trade block before getting hurt. Then it was (and may still be) Dwight Howard, the player who is currently holding the Lakers' future hostage with his impending free agency and has been so aloof this season that we're one more lazy play away from J.R. Rider calling him out.

None of the blaming or examining really got to the crux of the team's problems—until Steve Nash broke what seemingly was a season-long silence. Nash, who signed with the Lakers this summer and stayed out of the drama-filled fray, summed their problems up in five words, per HOOPSWORLD's Alex Kennedy:

Identity is a weird word when it comes to judging basketball teams. It's completely immeasurable. For someone like me, who sticks mostly to statistical analysis, it's usually a topic worth avoiding because there is no way to quantify it.

However, you know "identity" when you see it. Tom Thibodeau's Chicago Bulls, they have an identity. They are successful because every player buys into Thibodeau's defensive system, an intricate rotation that emphasizes the defanging of pick-and-roll plays.

There are plenty of other examples worth noting. Gregg Popovich's San Antonio Sp...

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