If we held to the old adage that if you can’t say anything nice you should say nothing at all this would be the shortest article ever written. Ya, it was that bad for the Lakers against the Thunder. In their third game in what the NBA calls “The Campus” but will forever be referred to as “The Bubble”, the Thunder beat the Lakers 105-86.
Honestly, it wasn’t even as close as that looks. But, because this is a site now proudly dedicated to the Los Angles Lakers, I will start with the good news.
The Good News
- The Lakers won the 2nd quarter 27-26
- The Lakers had more offensive rebounds than the Thunder, 10-4
- The Lakers had more blocks than the Thunder, 3-2
- The Lakers had less turnovers than the Thunder, 11-13
- Did I mention the 2nd quarter? I did? OK then, that’s all there is.
The Bad News
No, let’s not dwell on the bad stuff. Besides making this one of the longest articles ever written, I don’t think anything good will come it. In short, the Lakers played this game like a team that didn’t have to win. Where the Thunder are in a battle with the Utah Jazz and Houston Rockets for the 4th spot in the Western Conference, the Lakers have the #1 seed all sewed up. When a team is motivated to win plays against a team with no motivation whatsoever to compete, all things being equal, this is the type of outcome you should expect most of the time.
The bigger concern for the Lakers, who are now 2-2 in the Bubble, is letting apathy creep into the teams mindset. A smaller concern is that since the restart LBJ gas a field goal average of 44.6% and is shooting 27.2% from deep.
I made the point that the these Bubble games were going to favor younger players and younger teams in that they will get their legs under them quicker than older players. LeBron, for all is greatness, is an older player and it looks like it is going to take him a while to adjust. The first thing that goes after a layoff is the legs and you can’t shoot without your legs. Of course, anyone who bets against James is likely to lose. He will be ready when the games count! But, for now, for these Lakers, the games don’t really matter.
That fact was very evident in this game.