The Los Angeles Lakers are shooting themselves in the foot with bad defense.
Alright, so the young core in Los Angeles is getting fun to watch, we all know that. We also have an idea of what Lonzo Ball and Kyle Kuzma could really be for the foreseeable future with the purple and gold.
However, one problem has stood out more than any other usual issue with a young team, and that has been their defense. Despite scoring the second most points per game in their division — behind only Golden State — Los Angeles has also managed to produce the second worst defense in their division, behind only Phoenix.
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Averaging 106.3 points per game on offense, the young Lakers have also been giving up just under 110 per game. For a comparison, Phoenix is allowing north of 112 points per game, which is also the worst in the entire league.
Los Angeles isn’t far behind that, as they have the second worst opponent’s points per game average and the fourth worst in the entire league. This is only because the Orlando Magic and Brookyln Nets are in second and third between Phoenix and LA, with around an 110 points per game allowance.
The Lakers, in my opinion, are also running out of excuses for any more hiccups in their development of young talent. I say that because they don’t have any reason to have less wins than the woeful Chicago Bulls, but that remains the case.
Chicago has won nine of their last eleven games after starting 3-20 on the season.
If the Lakers can’t do better than the Bulls, there’s a serious problem. Thinking of that, the looming pressure of what they’ll do with massive cap space and potential interest from superstars makes them worth your while as well.
They’ll have to answer questions at both shooting guard and center to be an effective and dangerous team next year. But defensive adjustments should be a top priority.