THUNDER -at- LAKERS - 2/8 - Thoughts and :-)) Ratings

 
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 08, 2021 11:36 pm    Post subject: THUNDER -at- LAKERS - 2/8 - Thoughts and :-)) Ratings

Overtime Again!... This part of the schedule looked easy. Pistons and Thunder at home. Who knew both of these games would go to overtime?

The Lakers picked back up where they left off in the first quarter of the last game adding another 8 turnovers tonight. That’s 15 turnovers in the past two games in the first quarter.

WIth no AD in the mix and the Thunder running a five-out offense, the lane was more open for business. More disturbing, however, was the lack of team rebounding. A lot of standing around and they were beaten to a number of offensive boards and loose balls.

The Lakers gave up 15 offensive boards by the end of the third quarter and trailed by 8 heading into the fourth. They leaned on Trezz to create some offense for them with AD out. It wasn’t until late in the quarter, where they’d make a push. They’d get threes by LeBron and Wes Matthews. Schröder would hit a midrange with 34 seconds left. He’d get fouled and make one of two to lead by 3.

After a coach’s challenge that the Lakers won but couldn’t control the subsequent jumpball, the Lakers would need just one stop. Or a foul to give two freethrows and keep the lead. Instead, KCP got caught in the air, fouled a three shooter and we were tied up with 1.1 seconds left.

After a LeBron miss, we went to overtime again. Another big score by Trezz, a three by Wes, a dunk in the post by LeBron all while getting stops on the other end and the Lakers took the OT 9-2, winning 119-112.

The new trio of Schröder, Harrell and Matthews combined for 56 of those points tonight.


LeBron -- -- So much for load management. Back-to-back overtime games meant another 43 minutes from LeBron tonight. No matter, LeBron delivered another triple-double with a 28-14-12 statline. Crazy. I think the energy was a bit low to start this one. A lot of standing around on the defensive glass early on (he’d get after it later and even run at the C spot). We’ve got to team rebound when we’re running our smaller lineups and LeBron just wasn’t. That hurt. Combine that with Morris out there not being AD and our guys not adjusting to that and we struggled a bit. Late in the game, you could see LeBron throttle up that intensity. He imposed his will on one layup in a crowd of three defenders (fouled with no call, too, with 3:31 left. Could have used that extra point). He also sank a big pull-up three a minute later as we were making our comeback (he, Kuz and Schröder combined for 4-26 three shooting...ouch). I like the play call with 34 seconds left. We were looking to run that THT/LeBron two-man game, but didn’t quite get it. Still, LeBron was able to get dribble penetration and collapse the D. That eventually led to that midrange by Schröder on the inside-out sequence. Better than just pounding the dribble and settling. He attacked that. I am really curious about the situation that was about to unfold with 1.1 seconds left in the game. It looked like LeBron didn’t want to call a timeout and was going to inbounds and chuck it down court. Vogel didn’t motion for a timeout. LeBron was irate that one was called. Schröder was talking to LeBron and bolted downcourt after the ball went in the hoop on the made FT. THT was streaking down the right side. I think LeBron was going to QB a pass down court to one of them. That would have been interesting. We were forced to take the timeout. LeBron missed a three at the buzzer in regulation. In OT, he left Dort standing still on a spin move in the post for a dunk for a key score. The Stats: He scored 28 points on 11-22 shooting (2-10 from three, 4-5 from the line) to go with 14 boards, 12 assists, 2 steals, 2 blocks, 5 turnovers and 3 fouls in 43 minutes. He was a +8.

Schröder -- -- Aggressive tonight with AD out. He couldn’t hit from three (1-7), but he got to the rim with frequency. He sank a huge midrange pull up with 34 seconds left to go up by 2. He moved in off the flyby at the three line and sank it from the wing. Clutch. His freethrow streak ended at 23 straight early in this one. But it was a missed FT with 15.9 that really hurt. That would have put us up by 4. Instead, the Thunder were able to tie it up with three freethrows themselves on the other end. Defensively, he was fighting. He played some spirited D, but I really think SGA just knew he could shoot right over SGA just didn’t care if Schroder was on him. He hit a couple big threes over him late, not even worried about a challenge. Slow start for Dennis tonight as he went 0-6 in the first half. When we have AD out, there should be more opportunity for others to step up offensively and he definitely tried to help fill that void. He did a good job putting pressure on the rim in the second half after that slow start. Schröder’s one turnover tonight came in overtime, just another sloppy unforced error with 34 seconds left in OT. But he made up for it drawing an offensive foul on the other end (his second offensive foul he drew in OT). The Stats: He scored 19 points on 6-16 shooting (1-7 from three, 6-10 from the line) to go with 7 boards, 5 assists, 1 steal, 1 block, 1 turnover and 1 foul in 38 minutes. He was a +2.

Caldwell-Pope -- -- Just killed me. Up by 3, we needed one stop. You could take an intentional foul and send the Thunder to the line for two freethrows -- that was my preference. Instead, KCP got caught on a pumpfake and gave up three FTs with 1.1 left to tie the game. Just a dumb, dumb foul. That sent the game to OT. Wes stole KCP’s mojo right now. LeBron even looked irked with KCP after he didn’t run through on the lane in the break. He let up and LeBron threw the pass out of bounds. It was just an awful game. He did have a great read in OT, firing a bounce pass to Schröder who backdoored his man for a floater. The Stats: He scored 8 points on 2-5 shooting (0-2 from three, 4-6 from the line) to go with 4 boards, 2 assists, 1 block, 1 turnover and 2 fouls in 34 minutes. He was a +6.

Gasol -- -- Very tricky to play him against five-out offenses, even more so without AD on the floor to help contain the paint. Near impossible when our perimeter defense is trash and giving up a ton of penetration like it was. With a five-out team that doesn’t want to go to the post too often, I prefer us just going small and switching everything. Offensively, slightly more possession with the ball in his hands to find teammates. I really love seeing LeBron backcutting guys with the ball in Gasol’s hands. They connected on a lob tonight. Gasol also hit Kuz on the same play for a score. Give him the ball and make a strong cut and you’ve created some instant offense. The Stats: He scored 2 points on 1-3 shooting (0-1 from three) to go with 4 boards, 3 assists, 2 blocks and 2 fouls in 19 minutes. He was a -6.

Morris -- -- With AD out, we normally have gone to Kuzma when there’s been a vacancy in the starting lineup. Instead, Vogel took Morris off the deep bench and slid him into the starters. Better stay ready, you might start. He just didn’t mesh with the team out there. A couple of iso misses. He did connect on one of his threes off a kickout to the corner from LeBron. Defensively, Bazley was a bit too mobile for him, it seemed. Also a little too bouncy on the offensive glass. (Bazley had 17 in the first half, but just 4 the rest of the way.) We really could have used more help from others. Only Laker without a block tonight. We pick on Gasol for not anchoring, but Gasol was a the top of the key a lot and guys like Morris were on the backline. He did a really poor job helping at the rim. Make a huge difference when they are used to AD being that guy in that spot. The Stats: He scored 6 points on 1-4 shooting (1-2 from three, 3-3 from the line) to go with 4 boards, 1 turnover and 4 fouls in 26 minutes. He was a +1.

Harrell -- -- Kind of an important game for him in his growth with the team this season as we saw coaches and teammates trust him in some big moments. We leaned on him to bring some iso scoring and he delivered again and again. He worked that left side of the court as always and managed to power in some scores off quick attacks. Some clutch plays in that fourth and overtime. He had a coast-to-coast And-1 layup with 8 minutes left that cut the lead to 5. He had another jumphook a minute later on iso. He then drew a double in the post (yes, the D was concerned) and he hit THT for a layup. In OT he had an iso layup on Horford to start. He then got an airball stop on Horford on the other end (Trezz would airball a jumper himself on the other end). Defensively, he played bigger as the game went along (meaning we were looking small early!). But if you watch the game, the Thunder pull our bigs out of position making it tricky. I want to see more switching when we go super small. We also did that more very late in the game. When the team wanted to get boards and put in the right effort as a team, they controlled the glass. When they didn’t, they didn’t and we paid the price without a giant big to allow us play that way. His one block came with a few seconds left as the Thunder thought they were going to stroll in for a layup and he sent it into the stands. The Stats: He scored 21 points on 9-14 shooting (3-3 from three) to go with 8 boards, 2 assists, 1 block, 3 turnovers and 2 fouls in 30 minutes. He was a +15.

Kuzma -- -- Let’s start with the defensive effort. Some really good moments again challenging shots. He swatted a drive and it led to a breakaway dunk for the Lakers on the other end. He had another block on a switch where he came from behind and again that ignited the break. I don’t know what clicked with him in regards to challenge shots, but it’s been superb this season. Another good job on the boards. He had 5 offensive. One of those was a putback jam from behind a man at the end of the half (one was a point-blank choke on a putback). Another was a tap out that eventually led to FTs for Trezz. Shooting-wise? Yikes. Three straight trips down court he missed wide open looks from three at one point. He swished his first coming off a pindown on an ATO set. That was probably his hardest of the night. The other 8 he took after that, some were wide open, and he could not knock them down. Stone cold from the perimeter. I do like that he was able to work on other things and make an impact. He was able to get the rim for some points and we ran him with Gasol for a bit, which can take advantage of his cutting. But, man, we could have used a second shooter in this one. The Stats: He scored 11 points on 5-16 shooting (1-9 from three) to go with 10 boards (5 offensive), 2 assists, 2 blocks, 2 turnovers and 1 foul in 23 minutes. He was a -6.

Horton-Tucker -- -- A lot of minutes tonight, even through the thick of it. He had a great rotation in the first half to save LeBron and reject a layup. That was impressive from the youngster. Offensively, several layups. The first he attacked right and finished right, of course. (When he attacks left, he finishes right, which is why we get those backhand layups). He had a nice finish right over his man in transition. His best was a spin move into a backhand layup for a score. He was a +11 in 9 minutes in the first half, but a -6 the rest of the game. The Stats: He scored 8 points on 4-8 shooting (0-2 from three) to go with 5 boards, 1 assist, 2 steals, 2 blocks, 2 turnovers and no foul sin 27 minutes. He was a +5.

Matthews -- -- “Exceptional performance by Wes tonight,” he said. Your 10th or 11th man just came in and dropped 16 and made some of the biggest plays of the night. “Just staying ready. It’s about being a Laker, about being a pro,” he said afterward. Huge, huge plays from all night, but a big three in crunch time with 1:30 left, followed by a steal on the other end helped get this team the W. He’d also sink probably the dagger three in OT when LeBron found him weakside for another three to go up by 7 with 2 minutes left in OT. So four straight DNPs and he comes off the bench for four threes, a block, a couple steal and 16 points. It was a dog fight tonight and he had plenty of fight in him. His on ball D was great and there were a couple of reads on help D that were perfect. This is the two-way ball you hope you will get when the pressure is on come post season. He passed Steve Nash tonight on the all time three shooting list. The Stats: He scored 16 points on 5-7 shooting (4-5 from three, 2-2 from the line) to go with 3 boards, 1 assist, 2 steals, 1 block and 4 fouls in 26 minutes. He was a +10.

Vogel -- -- Key Moment: That coach’s challenge that we won. Good challenge, but the outcome was going to be LeBron v. Bazley for a jumpball. We’d lose and give them another chance. Here’s where you take that intentional foul before they get a three ball off. That challenge would have bought you another 4 or 5 seconds off the clock at the worst and sending SGA to the line. We paid the price instead with KCP falling for that pumpfake. “We prefer to foul if there is an opportunity to intelligently do so,” Vogel said. He wants our guys to take a foul on the down dribble. We didn’t.

Key Substitution: Wes Matthews all night. But the really important one was late in the game when KCP just missed a wide open corner three. Vogel instantly went with Wes after that miss. Wes came in and hit a big three and then also got a steal on the other end. Huge plays when we were trying to claw back into this one. Of course, Vogel brought KCP back in later and paid the price. But that missed wide open three by KCP made him remember to go back to Wes.

Key Stats: No offensive boards given up by the Lakers in the fourth quarter and overtime. So much of the issue there had more to do with team rebounding instead of size. Small ball teams have to box out. If you don’t, you’re going to pay. We paid for three quarters giving up 15. We didn’t suddenly get taller. We just suddenly decided to put in the required effort as we felt the importance of every stop and every possession. Side note: The Lakers had 12 blocks in this game. That’s a massive number. Every player but Morris had a block. Pretty crazy, but it wasn’t like we were anchoring the paint. We couldn’t contain the perimeter (missing AC in addition to AD).

Coach’s Challenge: With 8.8 seconds left, Schröder made a recovery challenge on a layup after you thought he might just let it go up 3. He called for the foul. Vogel challenged. Call was overturned as the part of the hand Dennis got was on the ball. The problem, however, this resulted in a jumpball at center court and we had LeBron at center. So we lost that and the Thunder had the ball. KCP fouled on a three and they tied it up. The Thunder used their challenge with 34 seconds left in overtime on an off-arm foul on SGA on a drive. Challenge unsuccessful.
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eddiejonze
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 08, 2021 11:44 pm    Post subject:

first!
thanks for the writeup, I have no Idea what our problem is but i don't think this happens with McGee or dwight tbh.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2021 1:47 am    Post subject:

Thanks DB!

Got to love Schroder and Harrell stepping up.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2021 1:58 am    Post subject:

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mhan00
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2021 2:01 am    Post subject:

Morris has been unplayable for most of this season. Really hoping he goes back to the pine. Really nice to see Wes look more like he did with the Bucks last season. If he sticks in the lineup, I hope we get more of this Wes and not the one we’ve gotten so far.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2021 4:29 am    Post subject:

Over one-third of the regular season has been completed (25 of 72 games). Over this period, the Lakers have shown that they are one of the top three teams in the WC. For the most part, they have stayed healthy and haven't missed any games due to the pandemic. They now have 47 games left to get ready for the playoffs.

Go Lakers!
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akgolf
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2021 5:21 am    Post subject:

Thanks DB!
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danzag
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2021 5:51 am    Post subject:

Thanks, DB!

Gotta win in regulation, though. LBJ can't keep playing all those minutes
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2021 8:03 am    Post subject:

Did not play particularly well overall, did not have our 2nd and 3rd best/most valuable players. Some late game weak IQ plays. We definitely are fortunate to escape with a 2-0 record in the last 2, and I will take it, as we will at some point hit some point of injuries or covid issues that may take out Bron AND AD at the same time, so we need these wins as many as we can get.
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wolfpaclaker
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2021 8:10 am    Post subject:

mhan00 wrote:
Morris has been unplayable for most of this season. Really hoping he goes back to the pine. Really nice to see Wes look more like he did with the Bucks last season. If he sticks in the lineup, I hope we get more of this Wes and not the one we’ve gotten so far.

Found it interesting that he got the start, and that too at the 4 next to Gasol. He has not been shooting the 3 that well, but he also has not gotten much quality minutes around Bron/AD.

His 3 point shot is the key, he has to make that shot to be able to have value. Looked like a guy that has not been playing and sharp. I hope we get him some PT before the playoffs. And he is sharp. There will be moments we will want that guy that pulls the trigger from 3 and does not hesitate. That is Kieff, not Gasol or Trez. If we are playing "big" we gotta go with Bron, and AD. Then it is between Gasol, Trez and Kieff. Come playoffs, we need that guy that will not hesitate on those 3s. This is where Kieff has value.
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Theseus
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2021 8:51 am    Post subject:

We all deserve commemorative t-shirts for making it through watching that ugly game
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2021 8:54 am    Post subject:

Thanks, DB!

It wasn't pretty, but it's a W.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2021 10:11 am    Post subject:

Theseus wrote:
We all deserve commemorative t-shirts for making it through watching that ugly game


Yeah that was the most painful game to watch this season (so far). I wanted to turn it off midway thought the third but could not.

I like starting Morris over Kuzma to keep the second unit intact as much as possible. Wes filled in admirably for AC. Morris for AD did not deliver much. As previously posted, he has value when hitting three pointers.

THT continues to show why he should get playing time. 2 blocks, two steals, 4 rebounds and 1 assist shows an all around game we need. Kuzma had a horrible shooting game, especially from three (1-9), but played good defense.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2021 11:29 am    Post subject:

That KCP foul was just...
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Scherm
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2021 1:24 pm    Post subject:

Prior to KCP inexplicably biting on a 3-point pump fake, the OKC coach said this:

Mike Trudell: More from Mark Daigneault on the Lakers: “They’re probably the smartest team in the league, at least that (we’ve) seen, from top to bottom.”

i agree that most of the team has a high BB IQ but how bonehead can you get, KCP?
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2021 7:20 pm    Post subject:

Thanks DB!
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deal
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2021 8:29 pm    Post subject:

Thanks DB!
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