What do you think the lakers should do to improve on defense ?
Im a lakers fan but they were infected with the injury bug and now they are in the 7th spot in the playoffs. Do you think they should wait another year or try going after some defensive players because I think there offense is fine but there defense is crap, and why the hell would vlad go snowboarding when the team needs him plus its a rule not to do so If i were phil I would cut him off the team but they need him and thats a waste of money, talk about being loyal to your team.
As far as the Lakers' deficiencies on defense - they're problem is ball penetration, and bigs rotating to stop it. If you watched the Suns game last night, you saw Steve Nash able to drive into the paint unimpeded all game long. The reasons this happens against the Lakers D are numerous.
First, Smush and Farmar aren't good on the ball defenders. Parker is long enough to bother outside shooters, and hawk passing lanes, but he doesn't move his feet well enough to stay in front of point guards who can use the dribble to penetrate. Farmar will probably never be good at it. He's a heady, opportunistic passing lane thief, but like Parker, he's not quick enough with his feet to stop ball penetration. Shammond Williams is the best of their three point guards with on the ball defense, but he's too mistake prone on offense to get serious minutes consistently.
The truth is, today's point guards are so adept at crossovers and similar slick moves with the ball, that stopping them with one defender is difficult for any one point guard. This is where your teammates have to recognize and help. The Lakers are deficient at this as well. Bynum is just young and inexperienced, and isn't seeing it yet, ditto for Turiaf. They've focused so much of Bynum's training on offense so far in his career, that he's simply lost on defense at this point. Turiaf gives all out effort all the time, but he's slow at recognizing. These two will get better with time and experience. Brian Cook isn't interested in playing defense. I know many Laker fans wonder why such a sweet shooter rides the bench so much. This is why. He couldn't defend a fire hydrant, and he refuses to rotate to help spots. Radmanovic is actually pretty good at it, but he's floor-bound and not a threat to block shots, or take charges, particularly now with a bad shoulder. Odom will rotate properly, but is not aggressive about it because he's trying to avoid foul trouble. Luke Walton is slow. This is where the Lakers actually miss Chris Mihm. He's a better interior defender than he's given credit for, and he's not averse to banging the other team's point guard. His history of foul problems have a lot to do with whacking point guards when they penetrate the painted area. These are fouls that coaches don't mind seeing that much because it sends a message.
The Lakers may try to solve this in the playoffs by putting Kobe on other team's point guards, but this comes at a price as we all know. The more energy he must expend on defense, the more likely his offense will suffer, and that's just not good because it means his teammates have to step up on offense. We all know the problems that causes.
The Lakers really don't need to make moves in the off-season to solve this problem. As Bynum and Turiaf age, their recognition and proper rotations will come. Plus, Mihm will be back. Radmanovic isn't as attractive to other teams as you might think. He's a head case; a fact that became all the more evident with the snowboarding incident. Cook is moveable. A lot of teams are in love with his outside shooting, and believe they can coach him into playing defense. But the truth is, if Phil Jackson can't get him to, it isn't likely anyone else would either.
Another thing I wonder about is Phil Jackson himself. He's always been a coach that stresses defense. His championship teams played stout defense. Maybe he's getting soft in his old age.
The Lakers long have been known as "tinsel town" or "showtime"...but even then they played hard defensively, and knew what it took to win. Kobe will take most of the blame, but this should fall on the GM (Kupchak) and the coaching staff.
I am a Bulls fan, so I am familiar with Phil Jackson and his philosophy, and it is defense 1st. This team needs to surround Kobe with guys who'll be proud to play good ol fashioned slap a "MF" in the mouth defense.
Kupchak needs to go. Put a guy in the front office that is basketball saavy, and can spot really good players from a defensive standpoint. Also, find guys who don't turn the ball over, and guys who'll in the end Kobe can trust...he doesn't trust this team...which is the reason for his scoring outbursts.
I'm not a Kobe Bryant fan, but he is the best in the game, and the Lakers should show him some loyalty and put some guys around him.
The Lakers just need a PG who will start playing with some effort and not whine about being benched. They need time to get some experience because this is a really young team. Some more veterans would help too.
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