The Los Angeles Lakers (1-5) beat the Denver Nuggets (4-3) tonight and the reason was clear, shooting!
In their first five games the Lakers played solid defense. They came into the game against the Nuggets in the top 13 rebounding, steals and blocks. In fact, they led all the Association in steals! Defense was not the problem, shooting was. This is a team that won the 2020 NBA Finals because of their defense. Unfortunately, as LeBron James recently said, this team is not made up of shooter.
Before facing the Nuggets the Lakers were shooting 41.6% from the field and 23.7% from beyond the 3-point line. That put them in the 30th spot out of 30 teams in both categories. On Sunday, they played their characteristically good defense and matched that with very good offense!
The Lakers finished shooting 47.9% overall and a staggering 43.3% from deep! They limited turnovers, played smart basketball, balanced scoring and handed a very good Denver Nuggets team the L. So, is this the turning point for the Lakers? Is this the team Lakers fans can expect to see the rest of the season? Has the team turned the corner?
Will the Real Lakers Please Stand up!
While the Lakers are not a great shooting team (I would never argue with LeBron), they aren’t as bad as the first five games of the season showed. But, to be fair, they likely aren’t as good a shooting team as they were tonight. The truth is somewhere in the middle, and that’s OK. The key for this team will be on the defensive side. That and the health of Anthony Davis will be the keys for the Lakers all season long.
Tonight it was nice for Lakers Nation to forget about games 1 through 5 and enjoy a well deserved victory.
Next up, the very good New Orleans Pelicans on Wednesday, November 2nd.