GRIZZLIES -at- LAKERS - 2/12 - Thoughts and :-)) Ratings

 
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DancingBarry
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 12, 2021 11:30 pm    Post subject: GRIZZLIES -at- LAKERS - 2/12 - Thoughts and :-)) Ratings

It Ain't Pretty, But They're Still Winning... You may just want to skip first quarters because most of the Lakers do.

They fell behind 22-2 as Vogel had to burn a couple of timeouts with very little purpose offensively by the Lakers to start the game. They dug the hole turning the ball over and clanking away from the perimeter. They’d get their second bucket of the quarter nearly 7 minutes into the game.

As the game went along, they got to the rim more and picked up the pace. They trailed by 59-46 after giving up a three the halftime buzzer. Not a pretty half as the Lakers had just 7 assists and 11 turnovers.

Late in the third, the Trezz/Bron/Kuz/Wes/AC lineup made a run. LeBron was a man on a mission, getting to the line, sinking turnaround and finally a three at the end of the quarter. They took an 85-80 lead heading into the fourth, dropping 41 points in the quarter (LeBron and AD combined for 24 of those, but some moments by Gasol, Wes and Trezz).

They opened the fourth with a 5-0 run and forced a timeout as they started to take command.

It wasn’t until LeBron went to the bench, though, that they did take complete control. Kyle Kuzma was relentless on the offensive glass (5 of them tonight on his way to 20-10). He had several big plays during this stretch and by the time LeBron returned, the Lakers extended their lead.

The Lakers took their seventh straight game 115-105. How is this win streak so painful to watch at times?


LeBron -- -- Sometimes those classic cars need to warm up a bit before they run smoothly. It seems like he’s been really slow to get going. But, man, once he gets downhill, it’s trouble for whatever is in his way. Nothing going on in the first quarter, he started to pick up the intensity in the second. He was exchanging some words with some Grizzlies in that quarter. By the third, he and it going. He was getting to the rim consistently, hitting the turnaround and burying a three at the end of the quarter. He was talking to the Memphis bench. That close to the third with the bench was MVP level ball. The numbers are just ridiculous 28-9-8. He clearly misses the crowd as he was jokingly playing with imaginary fans as the route was on later in the game. Some strong dunk attempts in this one, even one attempt in a crowd. He capped it off getting up to throwdown a hammer for his last points of the night when Gasol hit him on a cut for a score. The Stats: He scored 28 points on 9-15 shooting (1-4 from three, 9-14 from the line) to go with 9 boards, 8 assists, 2 steals, 5 turnovers and 2 fouls in 34 minutes. He was a +8.

Davis -- -- He worked some rust off in his first stint and came out much stronger after that. I think he missed his first five attempts before things started to click as he was hitting from the midrange as well as finish strong on the break. He led the team with 16 points on 7-14 shooting in the half. That midrange shot started to look more like the AD we saw in the playoffs. We saw no issues related to the injury that has kept him out the last couple of games. He was flying up and down court, got some strong finishes in and also challenged some shot with some explosiveness. With the misses early and even a miscue on a handoff with KCP out of his way, he shot over 70% the rest of the way. He and LBJ tag teamed on that 41-point third quarter with AD getting a dunk on the break, scoring a layup, finding Lebron back door for a dunk, and then swishing a jumper himself when they worked the two-man game next time down. Late in the game, we set him up for some rim finishes as we broke down the zone D. You get that kind of purposeful/aggressive game from the two of them and good things happen. The Stats: He scored 35 points on 16-27 shooting (0-3 from three, 3-4 from the line) to go with 9 boards (3 offensive), 1 assist, 2 steals, 1 block, 3 turnovers and 1 foul in 35 minutes. He was a +0.

Schröder -- -- Man, 5 points and 7 turnovers from our starting backcourt tonight. Really poor night. A couple turnovers to start the game by Dennis that helped the Grizzlies get out to an 11-0 start. He didn’t score in the half going 0-2 from the floor along with 3 turnovers and 3 fouls. Awful half. Only slightly better second half. He had one layup on a speedy attack from the right side tonight. That was it. I really want him to get off to strong first quarters. LeBron’s motor hasn’t gotten it going in first quarters. AD sometimes settles a bit. Gasol is Gasol. We really need that energy of Schröder to start off strong while those other guys are in cruise mode early on. The Stats: He scored 2 points on 1-4 shooting (0-2 from three) to go with 3 boards, 3 assists, 4 turnovers and 4 fouls in 22 minutes. He was a -2.

Caldwell-Pope -- -- The Lakers shot a poor 2-15 from three in the first half. KCP made his only attempt from three, so everyone else was 1-14. That was his only bucket. Really, really quiet game. He’s looked like his worst self lately. Early in the season, he had that confidence going. Now, he just seems to disappear for long stretches. I don’t think the shot quality has been consistent, but the past several games, he’s missed shots that used to be automatic. I’d like to see us get some more set plays for him early in the game. We can’t have him and Schröder just being dead weight offensively out there like they were tonight. The Stats: He scored 3 points on 1-2 shooting to go with 1 board, 2 assists, 1 steal, 3 turnovers and no fouls in 20 minutes. He was a -5.

Gasol -- -- I’ll take 2-5 from three every night. First, it means he’s taking the shots he should instead of showing that reluctance. Second, of course, is making them to keep the D honest. We really need to put the ball in his hands more to playmake than we do. Just 1 assist tonight, a key one as he hit LeBron with a nice bounce pass between defenders for a hammer dunk late in the game. Defensively, he was able to stay in the paint more and wasn’t pulled out like the last games. That allowed him to be a little more effective. There were some plays early on where the D didn’t switch quickly behind him and that caused some issues. Our rotations were thrown off a little with Harrell going to the locker room, so that gave Marc a chance to finish this one out. They worked it out fine. We then brought AD in and ran both of them down the stretch. Rare we see that. The Stats: He scored 6 points on 2-5 shooting from three to go with 2 boards, 1 assist, 1 block, 1 turnover and 3 fouls in 28 minutes. He was a -7.

Harrell -- -- His minutes were cut short a bit in the second half. He blocked a shot on one end, then ended up face down on the other when he took a shot to the noggin from Kuzma who picked up a ball Trezz lost. That sent him to the locker room. Prior to that, though, his power game around the rim was very effective. He was getting to the line or finishing. This was easily going to be one of those 20-point games, but he played just 16 minutes. His role on this team is replacing Howard as the bench big man. This was very much an effective, Dwight type of game. Trezz had 3 of the Lakers 5 offensive boards in the first half and would finish with 4. He got to the line for 10 attempts. He was physical. Unlike Dwight, he didn’t pick up any fouls and also drew a charge. Very good game again from our backup big. The Stats: He scored 14 points on 4-8 shooting (6-10 from the line) to go with 7 boards (4 offensive), 1 block and no fouls in 16 minutes. He was a +15.

Kuzma -- -- LeBron out, the Lakers brought back in their struggling backcourt in the fourth. This was a key moment. Kuz’s relentless effort on the offensive glass during this stretch of the game was killing Memphis. Typically, we lean on AD or Schröder to try to do something while LBJ rests, but it was Kuz who imposed himself on the game. I remember last year in the playoffs, the Lakers were getting beat by Houston corner crashes on the offensive glass. Kuz got burned on one or two of those. So, he started to pick up his offensive rebounding on the other end by doing the same thing for the Lakers. This year, he’s really throttled up that effort. After the game, he mentioned how he doesn’t like just standing in the corner. Even though the Lakers struggled early on, somehow Kuz scratched out 9 points in the first half on 4-8 shooting. It didn’t look like that kind of game early on, although he did score a couple of times at the rim on the move and hit a three. It’s just he had some really good looks from three that he was missing, so you thought he was less effective. In the second half, just all the hustle you expected scoring to go along with that. He slapped a ball in off a miss. He had outback of a Laker missed three. He had another one that turned into FTs. He also grabbed an offensive board, pulled it out and drilled a three. He also slipped in a pass against the zone to AD for a dunk. Very effective fourth quarter and the numbers followed. You’ve got some ball dominant stars in LeBron and AD, so you need this kind of low-usage, high energy impact around them. He brings this to the playoffs this season? That’s a whole different player. The Stats: He scored 20 points on 8-14 shooting (2-8 from three, 2-2 from the line) to go with 10 boards (5 offensive), 2 assists, 1 steal and 1 foul in 32 minutes. He was a +21.

Caruso -- -- Good to have him back. The defense just goes up a couple levels. Penetration is denied a little more. Rotations and switches are clean with good communication. He’s usually in the right place at the right time for steals or drawing charges (took a hard one tonight). He led the team with a +5 in the first half when we weren’t playing well and then added a +19 in the second half to that. Offensively, he scored his only bucket on a pull-up from midrange after moving in off the three line. But he was still effective even though he wasn’t scoring as his passing game was excellent (6 assists). He hit Kuzma on the break for a dunk. He found AD on a mismatch with a long pass for a layup. He had a steal that quickly turned into an And-1 for LeBron. He probed in the paint and bounced an interior pass to Harrell for a dunk. The hand was bandaged up, so that may be impacting the three shooting (0-3 tonight), but he had a few sub par shooting games prior to that injury. The Stats: He scored 2 points on 1-4 shooting (0-3 from three) to go with 3 boards, 6 assists, 2 steals, 1 turnover and 2 fouls in 20 minutes. He was a +24.

Horton-Tucker -- -- He didn’t come in until the start of the second quarter. He came up short on a layup and also missed a dunk. Not much action from him and he never got into any real flow. The Stats: He didn’t score on 0-2 shooting, had 1 board, 1 turnover and 1 foul in 6 minutes. He was a -6.

Matthews -- -- A lot of little plays in this one that added up over time. He swiped a bad pass early on, had a great weakside block on what looked like was going to be a sure score by the Grizzlies, and generally played on a string on D. He was a little disruptive, which is what you want from your defenders. Offensively, quiet night, but he had some moments. He missed a couple of threes, but got a defender to bite on a pumpfake, leaned and manufactured the three FTs. Seemed like the whole bench loved it. He also had a nice drive and dish to Harrell for an And-1 layup. He also kept a missed FT alive and that eventually would lead to LeBron scoring on the subsequent inbounds. Good minutes. He’s outplaying KCP right now and is eating into some of those minutes. The Stats: He scored 3 points on 0-2 shooting from three (3-3 from the line) to go with 2 boards, 1 assist, 1 block and 1 foul in 23 minutes. He was a +16.

McKinnie -- -- Nice finish on the lob pass from Cook. He missed a three and picked up a foul while out there at the end of the game. The Stats: He scored 2 points on 1-2 shooting (0-1 from three) to go with 1 board and 1 foul in 2 minutes. He was a -7.

Vogel -- -- Key Moment: There was a sequence in the first half when LeBron was at the freethrow line and was yapping with someone on Memphis. That was really about when the Lakers decided to take the car out of park. I think a couple Lakers went to the locker room a little annoyed. DFish afterward: “I just thought the grown men in the room decided they were going to let the young guys know, ‘no, we’re the grown men, we’re the champs and we’re going to let you know what it is.’” There’s something to that. It was subtle, but it seems like this team needs those triggers to motivate them. There’s no crowd. They’re coming off the championship run. They need something to spark the engine to life sometimes.

Key Substitution: That stretch to close the third quarter with LeBron as the only starter and a group of hustle guys around him -- AC, Kuzma, Harrell, Matthews. They turned defense into offense. Got stops, got buckets at the rim and the line, and reeled in the Grizzlies. By the time the quarter was over, Memphis was on its heels. Put guys with motors around LeBron and good things usually happen.

Key Stats: Let’s just look at the +/- of those bench guys mentioned above. AC (+24 in 20 minutes), Kuzma (+21 in 32), Matthews (+16 in 23) and Harrell (+15 in 16 minutes). They dominated.

Coach’s Challenge: With 5:51 left in the fourth, the refs called a phantom foul on KCP on a missed reverse by Allen. Sometimes you assume someone gets fouled on what looks like sure layups. This seemed to be the case here. Lakers were up 13 and Vogel wanted this stop. Challenge successful. Laker ball.
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eddiejonze
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 12, 2021 11:33 pm    Post subject:

First again. man, killin it lately
We really really really need to stop the slow starts...
Against Denver would be a good time to try a different tact.
Thanks fer the writeup DB.
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Dr. Laker
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 12:01 am    Post subject:

Thanks, DB!
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A Mad Chinaman
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 12:32 am    Post subject:

Thanks DB!!

Vogel is discovering different lineups he can use, especially with Matthews having opportunities to play more

Need to have a strong bench to be ready for any and all circumstances during this very different season
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michaelg
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 1:09 am    Post subject:

Thanks DB!

I just love what Vogel and the coaching staff have done with the focus on defense, halftime adjustments, helping the role players shine in their roles, the great team chemistry. What a great complement to our two superstars
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DrDent
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 1:55 am    Post subject:

Thanks DB.

Me griping seems to do no good about the slow starts. We'll just call them Jekyl and Hyde and see how it goes.

Down 22-2 was utterly embarrasing. But, they did storm back. Almost like clockwork as well - in the 3rd, as they have when trailing during this streak.

DB, why is it so painful? For me they sort of remind me of the Steelers this past season during their 11 game win-streak. It was like "that has to be the least impressive 11 game win streak ever." Hopefully the fellas do not suffer the same fate.
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TooMuchMajicBuss
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 2:10 am    Post subject:

Thanks DB! Another night, another shutdown to win it. I like that Vogel is conjuring up several different combinations add up to solid defense. Kudos to AC, Kuzma, Matthews, Harrell and LeBron.
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RI Laker
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 3:21 am    Post subject:

Thanks DB! Not happy TBH. We are playing down to our competition and LJ is playing to many minutes. We need to straighten things out because we are not going to get away with it against good teams.
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 4:20 am    Post subject:

DB,

Thanks.

These slow starts are NOT sustainable against good teams.

For me, these games have been unwatchable.
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 5:45 am    Post subject:

Thanks DB!
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cathy78
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 6:01 am    Post subject:

I guess the only positive is that they actually can win games after being down by 20. Thanks to some energy from the bench...
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governator
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 6:18 am    Post subject:

that Dillon Brooks guy always screamed at Bron and woke Bron up lol, almost got yammed in his face, lucky Bron missed the dunk
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wolfpaclaker
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 6:24 am    Post subject:

When you fall 20-2, and then at some point 45-28, you are not starting off games the right way. Definitely was a lot of stagnant offense going on. We do not really thrive until Bron slides over to PG full time. On offense that is. If our D gets going, we can thrive with Dennis but the best ball on offense we tend to play is when we get to Bron full time at PG.

This happened in this game late 3rd to early 4th. Totally took the game away from the Grizzlies. So much more cutting, so much more IQ plays. That is probably how we will play in the playoffs, a lot more dependent on Bron creating. Off memory, I think we ran Trez/Kuz/Matthews/Caruso around Bron, and then Gasol came in for Trez went to the lockerroom.

2nd half played a lot more aggressively off the ball on offense, and were more engaged on D. It is totally a February mid-season game, that you see a champion team usually coast. Glad we are winning. Just wondering how much of this will lead to bad habits.
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Laker7
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 7:20 am    Post subject:

You killed the T&R DB!

1. Schroeder and KCP sucked the life out of the game. 2-6 from the floor, 1-4 from 3, 7 turnovers and 4 fouls between them. KCP just not aggressive and not moving without the ball.

2. If we can get Gasol to shoot like this game, it will open up the middle for others. 2-5 makes him a legitimate threat that the other team has to guard and cannot double off of.

3. The bench killed the Grizz last night. Caruso was +24, Kuzma was +21, Matthews was +16, Harrell was +15. That is going to win a lot of games.

4. This game was "Make AD earn his money" night. AD took 27 shots, the entire bench took 32. AD needed this kind of work after sitting out the last two games.
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PenG_
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 7:26 am    Post subject:

Started 2-22 and shot 6-30 from three.

That usually results in a loss, but the Lakers have an ELITE bench.
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DancingBarry
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 8:31 am    Post subject:

wolfpaclaker wrote:
When you fall 20-2, and then at some point 45-28, you are not starting off games the right way. Definitely was a lot of stagnant offense going on. We do not really thrive until Bron slides over to PG full time. On offense that is. If our D gets going, we can thrive with Dennis but the best ball on offense we tend to play is when we get to Bron full time at PG.

This happened in this game late 3rd to early 4th. Totally took the game away from the Grizzlies. So much more cutting, so much more IQ plays. That is probably how we will play in the playoffs, a lot more dependent on Bron creating. Off memory, I think we ran Trez/Kuz/Matthews/Caruso around Bron, and then Gasol came in for Trez went to the lockerroom.

2nd half played a lot more aggressively off the ball on offense, and were more engaged on D. It is totally a February mid-season game, that you see a champion team usually coast. Glad we are winning. Just wondering how much of this will lead to bad habits.


Bron needs to sit with Dennis after every game and go over the tape on the read Bron makes. Here’s what I see, here’s the passes you make in these situations. Actually, THT should be in that session, too.
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danzag
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 9:00 am    Post subject:

Thanks, DB!

I'll take ugly wins over moral victories
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LakerDYnasty72
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 9:19 am    Post subject:

A couple of things: DB asked how is this winning streak so painful to watch at times? It's painful to watch at times because it's not pretty basketball.

We're winning primarily off of our talent on defense, the brilliance of our next hall of famer, his stud team mate, Trez' performance as the reigning SMOTY, and lastly, rotational big games from KCP or DS, or AC.

We really have yet to put together a streak of great to flawless team play. We've played 1/3 of our season already, but we're still in the late preseason to early regular season stage of playing as one.

Nice to have the best record while figuring things out on the fly. Thanks DB!
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