Los Angeles Lakers vs. Golden State Warriors: Postgame Grades and Analysis

Andy Bailey@@AndrewDBaileyFeatured ColumnistOctober 31, 2013

Los Angeles Lakers vs. Golden State Warriors: Postgame Grades and Analysis

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    After dominating the Los Angeles Clippers on opening night, the Los Angeles Lakers were absolutely throttled by the Golden State Warriors in Oracle Arena.

    The Warriors parked a whopping 125 points on the scoreboard, compared to the Lakers' 94.

    From pretty much the opening tip, Golden State controlled every facet of the game, running up and down the floor at will and hitting a barrage of threes in both halves.

    The Lakers had no answer for the Warriors defense either. We got a look at how stingy a group led by Andre Iguodala and Andrew Bogut can be as they held LA to well under 100 points. And this is the same group that scored 116 points against the Clippers last night.

    It's going to be pretty hard to find any positives for the visiting team in this one. And real easy to hand out high marks for the host team.

Point Guards

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    Steve Blake, Lakers

    It's getting more and more difficult for me to understand why Jordan Farmar isn't the starting point guard for the Lakers—even when Steve Nash is healthy.

    Tonight, Nash sat out with a neck injury and Mike D'Antoni opted to go with Steve Blake instead of Farmar.

    Blake did little to positively impact the game on either end of the floor in the first half and looked outmatched for most of the game.

    He got a couple buckets early in the second half, but they didn't amount to much in the long run.

    Blake finished with 10 points and four assists on 4-of-13 shooting.

    Overall Grade: D

    Stephen Curry, Warriors

    Even when Stephen Curry has a rare off night, you can't take your eyes off him. And neither can opposing defenses.

    Curry's prowess outside commanded the attention of the Lakers' perimeter defenders all night long, opening things up for Klay Thompson and David Lee. And when they found openings, Curry found them—totaling six assists.

    He may not have scored a ton (10 points on 4-of-10 shooting), but just his presence on the floor helps things run smoothly.

    Overall Grade: C

Shooting Guards

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    Jodie Meeks, Lakers

    While the Warriors were running away with this game in the first half, Jodie Meeks was doing his darnedest to keep things respectable. He finished the game with 14 points on 4-of-8 shooting.

    Plenty of Lakers looked sluggish early, but Meeks wasn't one of them. At least he wasn't offensively.

    On the other end of the floor, Meeks was torched by Klay Thompson. He let the Warriors' sharpshooter get away way too easily, as Thompson punished the Lakers early and often.

    Overall Grade: C+

    Klay Thompson, Warriors

    The Warriors are unbelievably scary. On any given night, one of five different players could dominate a game offensively.

    Tonight, it fell to Klay Thompson to do so. He was on fire throughout the first half, scoring 27 points on 10-of-12 shooting.

    What makes Thompson so dangerous is the way he moves without the ball. Meeks was the primary victim of that skill tonight.

    Thompson cut, slashed and shot his way to a game- and career-high 38 points against the Lakers and even earned an "MVP" chant from some faithful fans.

    Overall Grade: A

Small Forwards

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    Nick Young, Lakers

    I love Swaggy P as much as the next guy, but you have to think Lakers fans will grow impatient with him pretty soon.

    Or maybe he'll just have the same relationship with them that Metta World Peace enjoyed. Everyone knew he was pretty detrimental to the team, but he was just so lovable.

    Hopefully, Nick Young can be both lovable and efficient eventually. Tonight, he wasn't, finishing with six points on 2-of-9 shooting.

    If he's not careful, he might lose that starting 3 spot. 

    Overall Grade: F

    Andre Iguodala, Warriors

    As is often the case with Andre Iguodala, he did a little bit of everything against the Lakers. He's one of the best examples in the NBA of a real team player who puts team success above individual numbers.

    On one particular play, he caught a drop-off pass from Toney Douglas and instead of taking a near-sure shot himself, he passed it one more time to Thompson for an absolutely sure shot. That's just the kind of player he is.

    Tonight, he finished the game with seven points, four assists and four rebounds while locking down both Young and Xavier Henry.

    Overall Grade: B-

Power Forwards

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    Shawne Williams, Lakers

    Shawne Williams was nearly nonexistent in this one. He played just 12 minutes and failed to score.

    D'Antoni may need to start thinking about that Chris Kaman/Pau Gasol frontcourt if this keeps up.

    Overall Grade: F

    David Lee, Warriors

    If David Lee and Andrew Bogut stay healthy all season, Golden State is a very serious contender this year.

    Lee is so skilled with both hands on offense, and he has range out to 16-17 feet with his mid-range jump shot. His ability to dominate opposing big men with his offense opens things up for the Splash Brothers on the outside.

    Such was the case tonight, as he racked up 24 points and eight rebounds in just 27 minutes of action.

    Overall Grade: A


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    Pau Gasol, Lakers

    In the last year of his contract, Pau Gasol is proving that he still has some value. Along with Meeks, Gasol was about the only Laker who wasn't steamrolled by the Warriors in the first half.

    He spent a lot of time on the bench in the second half, maybe because the game was pretty much already decided.

    That can't continue if the Lakers want to contend for a playoff spot this season. D'Antoni will have to figure out how to tighten the big-man rotation so that Gasol can be on the floor for at least 31 to 32 minutes a game.

    In limited action, Gasol scored 12 points and grabbed seven rebounds.

    Overall Grade: B

    Andrew Bogut, Warriors

    Fresh off signing a big three-year extension, Andrew Bogut did exactly what Golden State needs him to do. He took just two shots in 18 minutes, but he still made his presence felt.

    When Bogut and Iguodala are on the floor together, the Warriors have a two-headed defensive monster that could become darn-near unrivaled this season.

    The big man dominates the boards and protects the rim whenever he's out there. He collected eight rebounds and swatted two shots.

    Overall Grade: B

Sixth Men

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    Xavier Henry, SF/SG, Lakers

    After taking the world by storm in the Lakers' season opener against the Clippers, Xavier Henry cooled off against the Warriors.

    He shot 4-of-11 from the field, but he still managed to reach double figures with 14 points because of his ability to get to the rim and draw fouls. He went 6-of-9 from the free-throw line.

    Off shooting nights will happen. But if Henry continues to attack and play with the energy he's shown through two games, D'Antoni will have to start thinking about making him Kobe Bryant's wing companion upon his return.

    Overall Grade: C+

    Jermaine O'Neal, C, Warriors

    As soon as Harrison Barnes returns from injury, this role will go to either him or Thompson. Tonight, the responsibility was O'Neal's, and he wasn't too shabby.

    He won't be called upon to score too much this season, but if he can get out there and alter a few shots, great. That's what he did tonight, protecting the rim for 20 minutes and blocking two shots.

    Overall Grade: C


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    Although they weren't as electrifying or efficient as they were against the Clippers, this second unit still played better than the starters. Their average plus/minus was significantly better than the first five.

    Chris Kaman and Wesley Johnson shot a combined 9-of-20 from the field and scored 22 points.

    Jordan Farmar chipped in 12 points on 5-of-13 shooting to go along with five assists. He has to overtake Blake soon, right? The eye test says Farmar is the better option at the 1 than both Nash and Blake because he's so much more explosive and actually has the ability to play a little defense.

    Overall Grade: B


    Without Jarrett Jack and Carl Landry, it looks like Golden State's bench isn't going to be what it was last season. But this group was solid tonight and will get even better once Barnes returns.

    Draymond Green and Toney Douglas provided offense, hitting 8-of-12 shots and pitching in 20 points.

    On the other end of the spectrum was Marreese Speights, who went 2-of-10 from the field, although the two makes were a three and a pretty impressive dunk after a dribble-drive down the lane. 

    Overall Grade: B+

    For 140-character pearls of wisdom from Bleacher Report's Andy Bailey, follow him on Twitter @AndrewDBailey.