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Frazzled and Discombobulated, That's Us

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Kevin Pelton of Basketball Prospectus, as you might have seen on TrueHoop today, has written a detailed piece on the Lakers' new defensive scheme which you should go read because it might blow your mind.

Amidst sweet graphs, KP2 offers the following discussion of our opening night struggles against the Lakers.

According to Helin, they played just a few possessions of the trap during the preseason before springing it upon the unsuspecting Blazers, who appeared frazzled and discombobulated in attempting to deal with it. The Clippers had little more time to prepare as the Lakers completed a back-to-back. Denver was the first opponent with time to digest the Lakers' system and was able to expose it at times--though the Lakers clamped down during their fourth-quarter run to seize control of the game.

Portland in fact played right into the Lakers' hands by getting little player or ball movement. The best way to beat the Lakers is to create as much penetration as possible, draw the help defender and then begin moving the ball. Teams can have success by sending their big man on the weak side immediately to the basket, where at worst he'll be single covered by a defender who may be smaller. Again, the three is open on the weak side, though teams must avoid the temptation to pass directly to a shooter through the lane, which invites the kinds of steal opportunities the Lakers crave.

Kevin used to work for the Sonics and has been hanging around the Rose Garden recently after the team decided to rip everyone's heart out.

I asked him for his thoughts on Sam Presti.  He sat silent for perhaps 20 seconds. His mouth contorted in various directions. He thought. He thought some more. After all of that, he settled on "he has a vision."  Hmmmm.  Love it. He also wore a black shirt and an orange tie on Halloween. Double love it.  

I recommend bookmarking Basketball Prospectus if you haven't already. They drop crazy knowledge.

-- Ben (benjamin.golliver@gmail.com)