LAKERS -at- THUNDER - 1/11 - Thoughts and :-)) Ratings

 
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2020 9:39 pm    Post subject: LAKERS -at- THUNDER - 1/11 - Thoughts and :-)) Ratings

Undermanned But Not Outgunned... No LeBron. No AD. No Green. The Lakers dropped a 41-19 first quarter on the Thunder without them. So no problem.

They’ve played a combined four games without one of their superstars. Tonight, they had a little adversity to face.

The Thunder were 11-2 coming into this game. The Lakers didn’t care, dropping yet another one of those opening quarters and staggering an opponent out of the gates.

Rajon Rondo led the charge, attacking the rim for easy scores and the rest of the followed his lead.

By halftime, they led 73-49. And into the third, they’d extend it to 32 points as their three ball was dropping at a ridiculous rate. Kyle Kuzma would lead the team with 36 points, but this was very much a team effort.

The Thunder would peck away at the lead, but never get within striking distance as the Lakers held on for the 125-110 win.


Kuzma -- -- Superb first half again. He was sinking threes, had a putback and a midrange jumper. But I was more impressed with his working off the high screen to get into his floater. Again, getting movement toward the hoop with the ball in his hands plays to his strengths. We need to make that consistent. He scored 23 points on 9-13 shooting, including 3-4 from three in the half. Loved the big offensive board and putback with 3 minutes left in the third when the Thunder were on a run. But he smoked them for good with a couple minutes left with a turnaround in the post and then a three to beat the shotclock the next trip down. He was aggressive and moving toward the hoop a lot tonight. Got to keep that up. We had so many starters out tonight that maybe this game helps the second units get more chemistry together. I’m curious to see if Vogel goes a little more with both AD and LeBron resting together just a bit to give Kuzma more green light. “These are growth games, particularly for Kuz,” Vogel said afterward. He mentioned how a lot of people are making the Kuzma fit/chemistry thing an issue, but he said it’s “just a matter of time” and preached patience. We’ve still got more than half a season to go. They talked a little about how LeBron was in his ear tonight helping him find his spots. Kuz led the team in scoring, minutes and +/- tonight. The Stats: He scored 36 points on 15-24 shooting (4-6 from three, 2-4 from the line) to go with 7 boards, 1 turnover and no fouls in 39 minutes. He was a +20.

Rondo -- -- “Rajon’s impact is measured in swag,” Vogel said, mentioning again how he gives the team confidence. Rajon has done that in the last couple. Dude was killing it out of the gates tonight. He took it to CP3 and the Thunder early on, scoring 12 of his points in the first quarter. I’ve wondered off and on whether he should be playing with McGee instead of Dwight in that second unit. McGee gives him that vertical spacing that keeps his man attached to him. That gives Rondo a little more space on his drives and he just has better chemistry with him. Regardless, Rondo had the Thunder on their heels from the start. The first quarter was ridiculous, like All Star Rondo out there. Rondo had 14 points, 8 boards, 5 assists at the half. He couldn’t pull off the triple-double tonight but this game was pretty much as good as one. His best assist of the night might have been a full-courter to KCP who scored an And-1 over his head. There’s been a lot of talk about Rondo and Kuzma not getting it done this season, but they rose to the occasion tonight. Rondo when asked by AD doing the post game interview what his mindset was without LeBron and AD out there. “That’s about 75 shots total, so Kuzma’s playing so that’s another 38 shots…” Rondo would get 22 attempts. The Stats: He scored 21 points on 10-22 shooting (1-6 from three) to go with 12 boards, 8 assists, 1 steal, 2 turnovers and 1 foul in 33 minutes. He was a +14.

McGee -- -- He had a massive dunk tonight off that strong handoff play we run. As we were setting up that stagger screen for a guard to come off, he noticed Adams watching the action on the screens. JaVale attacked and hammered over him. We’ve seen him take it a couple of times from that elbow position but none more emphatically than that one tonight. A side note on that play, we ran a couple more sequences off that from the strong side. One resulted in a turnover when McGee passed it as KCP stopped cutting. It probably would have been a layup. The other variation on that had Dudley taking a corner three. Love seeing us going deeper and deeper into that set. Clearly that’s going to be a weapon come playoff time. We got some reps in tonight. The Stats: He scored 6 points on 3-6 shooting to go with 7 boards (3 offensive), 2 assists, 1 steal, 1 block, 3 turnovers and 2 fouls in 22 minutes. He was a +4.

Bradley -- -- Midway through the fourth, he found Dwight on a corner entry for a dunk, then again on a drive and dish for another on back to back sequences. I’m not sure there was any backbreaker in this game, but those might have been it. That seemed to seal the deal with a couple of exclamation points. But he’d give up an And-1 layup shortly later that would cut the lead to 13 and force a timeout with 3 minutes left. So we couldn’t quite coast to the finish, unfortunately. Not much of a game in this one for Bradley. Having good PG defenders, though, allows us to cross match and keep Rondo from tiring or getting killed on D. The Stats: He scored 3 points on 1-3 shooting (1-1 from three) to go with 2 boards, 2 assists, 1 turnover and 3 fouls in 25 minutes. He was a +14.

Caldwell-Pope -- -- He had 9 of his 11 points in the first half. He’d sink a couple of threes. He had a sensational catch on a long outlet from Rondo, came down with the ball, bounced up quickly and flipped in the And-1 reverse over his head before going down. One of the highlight reel plays of this one. Defensively, a lot of good communication and switching by our guards. Last time out against the Thunder we got picked apart a little bit in the midrange, but not in this one. The Stats: He scored 11 points on 4-6 shooting (2-4 from three, 1-1 from the line) to go with 3 boards, 1 assist and 2 fouls in 28 minutes. He was a +14.

Caruso -- -- He had 8 points in the first half, sinking a couple of threes and a baseline floater. He hit a big three in the third straight away to push the lead back up to a comfortable amount after the Thunder were making a run. The Laker three shooting was ridiculous in this one, but I love that in addition to AC being accurate from there tonight, he also had a quick release. Catch. Fire. The three ball working. Some drives in the last game. I want to see him put it all together here soon for a big scoring night. The Stats: He scored 11 points on 4-8 shooting (3-4 from three) to go with 1 board, 2 assists, 1 block, 1 turnover and 2 fouls in 16 minutes. He was a +11.

Howard -- -- Rebounding beast with 14 in 26 minutes. No foul trouble tonight. He picked up a tech, though, after giving up an And-1 and again Rondo barked at him to focus on the game. Second night in a row Rondo was in his ear on something to keep him focused. Some nice sequences with Dwight and AB late in the game for a couple of dunks. We had a couple of post up opportunities for him. One was on one of those low seals under the hoop. He’d hit a jumphook off glass. Then have another kickout to AC for a corner three. The Stats: He scored 12 points on 4-8 shooting (4-4 form the line) to go with 14 boards, 3 assists, 2 blocks, 2 turnovers and 1 foul in 26 minutes. He was a +11.

Daniels -- -- He sank a crowd-quieting three to push the lead from 15 to 18 late in the third quarter. He knew it, too, putting his finger to his lips to hush them up. Shortly later he’d hit another pull-up off a high screen. Then, he took an elbow to the ribs from Gallo while getting a stop in the post on the other end. Early in the fourth, he added in a putback layup. He’d miss a series of threes early on in that quarter, but overall getting those points during that second unit (really third unit) stretch was a big boost. They had some screen actions for him to get into the midrange from the right side. Seemed to be done with purpose to get him into space for easy looks. The Stats: He scored 12 points on 5-11 shooting (2-6 from three) to go with 6 boards and 3 fouls in 21 minutes. He was a -2.

Cook -- -- He was one of 7 Lakers in double digits in this game. It was a team effort tonight and everyone picked a great time to step up and contribute. He sank a couple of threes in the first half and a long step-back wing jumper. He’s been feeling it from the perimeter in the last couple. If we can get offensive guys like Cook and Daniels contributing while holding teams to 19-point first quarters, like we did in the first, the crushing of opponents will continue. The Stats: He scored 13 points on 5-10 shooting (2-4 from three, 1-1 from the line) to go with 1 board, 3 assists, 1 steal, 2 turnovers and 1 foul in 18 minutes. He was a -8.

Dudley -- -- Huge stop going vertical early in the fourth with the lead at 17 on one stand and then denied another layup next time down doing the same. Back-to-back stops and the bench was going nuts. In the first half, he crushed a guard on a backcourt screen. You could see it coming. The little things and the dirty work add up, but you can see that the team is into it when guys like Dudley and Caruso make big plays. The Stats: He didn’t score on 0-1 shooting from three to go with 1 board and 2 fouls in 10 minutes. He was a -8.

Vogel -- -- Key Moment: Vogel took a couple of nicely timed timeouts to avoid a Thunder run in this one. A key one with under 5 minutes left in the third when a 32 point lead had been trimmed down to 18. But the key moment in this game was probably that start where Rondo just went off and the Lakers never looked back.

Key Substitution: Let’s go with sitting his main guys to rest and recover. Not playing LeBron, AD and Green and still getting the win? Golden. He's got this team well-oiled and running smoothly.

Key Stat: The three shooting tonight was tremendous. At one point they were 10-13 from three. They’d finish 15-32 on the night, making 6 more than the Thunder. Kuzma led the way with 4-6 shooting.
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ChefLinda
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2020 9:43 pm    Post subject:

First. Thanks, DB!
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2020 9:45 pm    Post subject:

Thanks DB!
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2020 9:58 pm    Post subject:

Best win of the season considering how short handed we were and how hot OKC has been.
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2020 10:00 pm    Post subject:

Quote:
The Thunder were 11-2 coming into this game.


Wow, whatta great win. Have a great weekend everyone!
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2020 10:08 pm    Post subject: Re: LAKERS -at- THUNDER - 1/11 - Thoughts and :-)) Ratings

DancingBarry wrote:
Key Substitution: Let’s go with sitting his main guys to rest and recover. Not playing LeBron, AD and Green and still getting the win? Golden. He's got this team well-oiled and running smoothly.

I am still shocked that not only did the Lakers win the game but they completely dominated a very good OKC team. If Vogel can sit LeBron and AD for a few more games--and keep them healthy for the playoffs--this season may be memorable.
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2020 10:26 pm    Post subject:

Thanks, DB!
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2020 11:30 pm    Post subject:

I know Lakers r gonna sign Darren collinson or someother PG.

Whom do we release from the end of the bench. Daniels and Cook have been contributing. Esp Cook who seems to feel a lot more comfortable with ball in hand in pick and roll rather than a spot up shooter.

I think Cook could be taking someones time from the bench rotation and hate to say it could be at the expense of Caruso or KCP because of his pick and roll skills
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2020 11:54 pm    Post subject:

This was more impressive than the last win!
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 12, 2020 3:19 am    Post subject:

Hammett wrote:
Quote:
The Thunder were 11-2 coming into this game.


Wow, whatta great win. Have a great weekend everyone!


They starched the rockets the other night.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 12, 2020 4:46 am    Post subject:

Thanks DB!
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 12, 2020 5:07 am    Post subject:

The Lakers wanted to show everyone that they had talent around AD-Lebron. That it was not just a 2 man show.

They made their point.

Kuzma has a career average of 17+ ppg going into this season Only his 3rd. He worked hard over the summer to get his shot better. He showed it. If he were part of the Pelicans trade, Kuzma would be dropping 20+ easy.
Rondo was a championship level PG. He led teams.
Howard was once a MVP level player, and still on a per minute production gives you all-star caliber production. Defensively still elite.
Bradley is a great defensive player, and has made multiple defensive teams in his career.

KCP, McGee, Caruso, all guys that contribute on both ends.

Just overall a well coached, good all around team.

Biggest win of the season. Each one counts 1W. However as I was saying around Xmas time, I wish we were playing the Clippers (and Bucks) when we are on a roll not at that point. If we could get AD and Lebron back now and play the Clips and Bucks this week, we would roll over them. It is about timing. Both times we have played those teams, the Lakers were not playing good overall team ball. Right now, they are.

We may finally have seen some major development in our offense. Rondo is pushing the pace. Players are understanding that they need to start the offense earlier, and they are gaining confidence in plays without relying on Lebron. Kuzma by no surprise, is the biggest factor. He can create.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 12, 2020 6:01 am    Post subject:

Should we sit both LeBron and AD together for couple minutes routinely (esp if we're up, end of 1st/start of 2nd, same for 2nd half) and let Rondo/Kuz be Westbrook/Harden?
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 12, 2020 6:02 am    Post subject:

Good to see the team win without the stars....Thanks DB !
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 12, 2020 6:32 am    Post subject:

Maybe Vogel learned something the past two games w/o AD, ya gotta play & give 30+ minutes to Kuz every night!

No reason he can’t get another 8- 10 minutes, 4 from LBJ & AD to cut their minutes to 33 & the other 6 from the others. Also they ran an offense w/o the stars, even with LBJ taking it to hoop other night. Seems to me getting others involved will stop everyone from standing around...

DO NOT TRADE KUZ, besides the fact he’s the only one left from draft classes. Now if we could beat the Bucks & Clips next time we play this team gains more confidence... A bonus if we add Collison & or Iggy later...
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 12, 2020 8:35 am    Post subject:

This is the first game of the season where all the shooters got hot; usually, one of AB, Caruso, or Kuz would have an off-night. When our shooters shoot well, this team can beat any team.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 12, 2020 8:36 am    Post subject:

Rest our big 2 the next couple of games. Our guys proved they can hold the fort down. We play a couple of scrubs at home and then hit the road for our toughest stretch of the season.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 12, 2020 8:52 am    Post subject:

Best win of the year.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 12, 2020 9:00 am    Post subject:

lounger wrote:
This was more impressive than the last win!


Amazing win, this team has been nothing short of sensational this season.

We have a squad this year Friends!
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 12, 2020 10:25 am    Post subject:

governator wrote:
Should we sit both LeBron and AD together for couple minutes routinely (esp if we're up, end of 1st/start of 2nd, same for 2nd half) and let Rondo/Kuz be Westbrook/Harden?


Yeah, I think in the first half you could give it a little run and see where guys are at. Maybe that helps jumpstart Kuz. I’d see if you could sit McGee midway thru the first then bring him back for AD with a couple minutes left to run with Kuz and Rondo. Then go back to your usual second quarter rotations, only now you can bring AD back a little earlier. See how they fare with something like that.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 12, 2020 10:32 am    Post subject:

kevin_405 wrote:
I know Lakers r gonna sign Darren collinson or someother PG.

Whom do we release from the end of the bench. Daniels and Cook have been contributing. Esp Cook who seems to feel a lot more comfortable with ball in hand in pick and roll rather than a spot up shooter.

I think Cook could be taking someones time from the bench rotation and hate to say it could be at the expense of Caruso or KCP because of his pick and roll skills


Daniels contract is a little easier to release than Cook’s. Cook also has playoff experience where he stepped up. So I imagine it’s probably Daniels that gets released. If you picked up Collison, though, from a roster standpoint Daniels would probably fit better to keep since he plays a little bigger defensively.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 12, 2020 12:23 pm    Post subject:

We need Vogel to get AD and LeBron to play team ball instead of two man game. That is the biggest problem.

Also giving Cook min showed something that the Lakers did not have before a pick and roll game without LBJ or AD.

It is very evident to get Kuz to succeed we need to play more pick and roll with shooters around. I think putting Cook in the rotation and even may be starting as a PG is possibly the solution.

governator wrote:
Should we sit both LeBron and AD together for couple minutes routinely (esp if we're up, end of 1st/start of 2nd, same for 2nd half) and let Rondo/Kuz be Westbrook/Harden?
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 12, 2020 5:13 pm    Post subject:

wolfpaclaker wrote:
The Lakers wanted to show everyone that they had talent around AD-Lebron. That it was not just a 2 man show.

They made their point.

Kuzma has a career average of 17+ ppg going into this season Only his 3rd. He worked hard over the summer to get his shot better. He showed it. If he were part of the Pelicans trade, Kuzma would be dropping 20+ easy.
Rondo was a championship level PG. He led teams.
Howard was once a MVP level player, and still on a per minute production gives you all-star caliber production. Defensively still elite.
Bradley is a great defensive player, and has made multiple defensive teams in his career.

KCP, McGee, Caruso, all guys that contribute on both ends.

Just overall a well coached, good all around team.

Biggest win of the season. Each one counts 1W. However as I was saying around Xmas time, I wish we were playing the Clippers (and Bucks) when we are on a roll not at that point. If we could get AD and Lebron back now and play the Clips and Bucks this week, we would roll over them. It is about timing. Both times we have played those teams, the Lakers were not playing good overall team ball. Right now, they are.

We may finally have seen some major development in our offense. Rondo is pushing the pace. Players are understanding that they need to start the offense earlier, and they are gaining confidence in plays without relying on Lebron. Kuzma by no surprise, is the biggest factor. He can create.
m

Don’t know why but I hate watching his jumper now. Just doesn’t look like it’s natural.
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 13, 2020 4:10 am    Post subject:

Joy knowing this deep is more than just two guys. Thanks DB for the recap.
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