Reports of the Los Angeles Lakers’ demise have been greatly exaggerated (and widely reported). It’s incredibly early in the season, so the Lakers are far from dead.
But they haven’t exactly shown signs of life yet, either.
Most of the Lakers’ early season woes—which have led the team to a shockingly poor start—are being attributed to the team’s unfamiliarity with Mike Brown’s Pseudo-Princeton offense. To put it mildly, it hasn’t worked.
To put it more accurately, it’s been a disaster.
Far too many of the Lakers’ “plays” seem to result in either Metta World Peace or Pau Gasol, alone and directionless, with the ball 25 feet from the basket. Steve Nash has initiated so few pick-and-rolls that he may have forgotten how by now. As a unit, the entire Laker offense looks out of sync, a step slow and generally disjointed.
Despite all that, the Lakers are actually among the league’s top 10 teams in terms of efficiency.
It’s the defense that’s been a bigger issue. Los Angeles has fallen into a tie for second-to-last in the NBA in defensive efficiency. Maybe the Princeton defense is to blame. Is that Mike Brown's idea, too? Can we blame him?
However you slice it, the Lakers haven’t gotten off to the start they—or anybody—expected. But it’s not all bad across the board. Some players have shown promising signs amid the litany of Lakers who have come out of the gate so poorly.
Let’s check out each L.A. Laker and weigh in on whether their early-season stock is rising or falling.