How the Lakers’ Clear Weaknesses With Russell Westbrook-Talen Horton-Tucker Revealed Against the Bulls

On paper, Chicago Bulls look miserable without being prepared to defend Anthony Davis in Monday. Center starts Nikola Vucevic went out due to NBAhealth and safety protocols, leaving a reserve that is rarely used Tony Bradley as the only real big man existing and former Laker Alex Caruso as forward nominal power. Just the day before that, Davis had chopped up a similar one with no artificials Spurs team for 27 points only in the first half. The first two quarters weren’t nearly as good for Davis on Monday. He didn’t score his first point until the final seconds of the first inning. He finished the first half with seven, and although he finished the game with 20, the match wasn’t particularly competitive as he raised the second half’s score.

I wish I could tell you that the Bulls came up with some innovative and sophisticated approach to covering one of the NBA’s best big boys, but they didn’t. They doubled him. Continuous. They did it when the Laker owned the first in the game…

And collect two…

And third…

And Wednesday…

Both sides came all night long in every way. Davis was mirrored in the post. He was doubled from the catch. His pickups were blown up before they could get close to the perimeter. All said, ESPN follow 15 doubles for Davis of the night. That was the bulk of his career despite being scrapped in the third quarter. In the past two matches, Synergy Sports tracked 11 difficult doubles in the hand. Only nine other players in the NBA have seen that many all season. The Bulls, with their spare center and 6-4 strength, choked one of the NBA’s best domestic goalscorers on their way to an easy win.

Lonzo Ball provided doubles on three of the four clips above along with several other plays throughout the night. Not coincidentally, Ball is protecting Russell Westbrook. Teams have used Westbrook’s men for doubles since his Houston days, but what makes Chicago’s doubles so effective is that Westbrook doesn’t have as many shots around him as he does. with Rocket. NS Lakers didn’t just start a poor cushion in the late game on Monday. They start two.

Of course, there are different types of acoustic accompaniment. Westbrook is a known commodity. He’s attempted more than 3,500 3-pointers in his career and made only 30.5% of them. The defense will never respect him when he catches the ball until he starts cutting the ball consistently. Talen Horton-Tucker is a mystery. He has never been so precise from behind the arc. In college, he was just 30.8% ahead of Westbrook. In his first two seasons as the Laker, he dropped to 28.5 percent.

Young players often improve when playing shooting. Horton-Tucker still can, and the fact that he’s tried 14 in his first two games suggests he’s at least grown more confident. But given his record, it would be irresponsible for the defence to assume that he will make even generous efforts from deep. Take a look at that first try again. Yes, Horton-Tucker took the corner for the trio, but it was his man, Caruso, who helped Westbrook block Davis’ pass. That’s the average Horton-Tucker got early in his career. For now, the defense is ready for him to shoot, but at least they will close him. The more he creates, the less they are willing to sacrifice those shots. The more he remembered, the less they bothered him at all from behind the arc.

That standard rises in the knockout stages. Defense is more concerned with keeping Davis and LeBron James further from the perimeter as they are deterring even the average shooter. Mediocre would be a positive outcome for Horton-Tucker and a pipe dream for Westbrook. Remember, Laker’s offense has struggled to accept even a single non-shooter in the round since Davis arrived in Los Angeles.

A non-shooter in the ring makes life harder for James and Davis, but playing the two of them together takes things a step further and inadvertently undermines those non-shooters. Westbrook and Horton-Tucker are both at their peak in offensive roles. Attacking becomes significantly more difficult as the other’s men can easily counter their drives. Through two games together, Horton-Tucker and Westbrook combined to attempt 25 shots in the paint… and 38 shots outside.

The defense didn’t turn them into shooters. The Lakers did it to themselves. They are inviting doubles in the post. They are begging the help of the guardians to kill the parasites. They are disabling their own players. Those players are talented enough to make lemonade for regular seasons. Horton-Tucker scored 28 points against the Bulls, and thanks in part to some unsustainable success in those jumps, the Lakers are scoring high as he shares the floor with Westbrook. But it’s a bad process, and on a significant sample it will eventually lead to bad results.

The Lakers almost certainly knew this was coming when they assembled this roster. Whether retaining Horton-Tucker is a hedge against age-related decline for James and Westbrook or a true bet on talent above all else, this team’s theory is to always repeat the endless formula. 2020 opponent of the elite defense and the ratio of goals scored in the transition period accounted for half. -court omission. Well, the Lakers ranked sixth in fast breakpoints per game and 15th in transition efficiency. The defense that finished first a year ago has also dropped to 15th, and starting the two no-shots in the bottom lane needs a pad in the last available position. Right now, their only option is Carmelo Anthony, who won’t be of much help with defense. Honestly, so has Westbrook so far this season. These are issues the 2020 Lakers don’t have to deal with. They have been optimized.

There’s no easy way to do it with this lineup, but an easy starting point will keep two players from shooting as stun as possible. Surrounding them with jumpers is the easiest way to prevent them from becoming jumpers. Separately, they both suit James and Davis. Together, they lead to the kind of overwhelming defensive attention Davis has against the Bulls, and as long as the Lakers keep the two of them together, their best players will continue to face challenges. similar problem. | How the Lakers’ Clear Weaknesses With Russell Westbrook-Talen Horton-Tucker Revealed Against the Bulls


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