The Los Angeles Lakers were able to keep the game relatively close against the San Antonio Spurs this past Sunday, but were never able to close the distance. Every time the Lakers would make a run, the Spurs would pull away. There were a lot of good things to take away from game one for the Lakers, as well as some areas that they will definitely need to improve come game two. We take a look at some of the numbers from game one.
37.6 : San AntonioSpurs Field goal percentage
- The Lakers did a remarkable job on the defensive end by holding the Spurs well below their regular season average of 48.1 percent from the field which was 2nd only to the Miami Heat in the NBA this season.
+2: Plus/minus when Steve Nash was on the floor
- In 29 minutes that Nash was on the floor the Lakers bested the Spurs by 2 points. Nash is the only dynamic perimeter offensive player on the Lakers roster and will likely see more playing time come game 2.
31: Combined rebounds for Pau Gasol and Dwight Howard
- Pau and Dwight did their job on the boards against the Spurs. The rest of the Lakers team didn’t fair so well on the boards.
33.3: Spurs shooting percentage in Pick and Roll and Spot Up Shooting Combined.
- The two areas where the Lakers have struggled all year long have been defending the pick and roll and perimeter shooters. The Lakers had no such problems this past Sunday. The Spurs went 14 for 42 from pick and roll sets and spot up shooting combined.
18: Lakers turnovers
- Most of the Lakers turnovers came from their bigs, Dwight Howard and Pau Gasol who combined for 10 turnovers. The Spurs will continue to harass the Lakers bigs when the ball goes into the post and both Gasol and Howard will need to do a better job of securing the ball to prevent easy transition baskets for the Spurs.
+1: Lakers rebounding advantage
- Usually winning the rebounding battle is a good thing; however, this is one of the few areas where the Lakers have a distinct advantage and should dominate the Spurs. The Lakers were tied for the NBA lead with the Denver Nuggets in total rebounds per game at 54.6 per game. The one glaring weakness of the Spurs is rebounding where they ranked 24th in the NBA at 48.9 total rebounds per game. The Lakers must dominate on the boards in game 2.
17 to 2: Spurs Fast Break points to Lakers Fast Break Points
- The Spurs fast break points were largely a result of the Lakers 18 turnovers. The Lakers with their older legs will rarely ever win the fast break battle. By the Lakers keeping the turnovers to a minimum, they can mitigate the damage in this area.
40: Spurs bench points
- It’s a bad sign when Matt Bonner scores as many points (10) as the entire Lakers bench. The Lakers will need to get more from Meeks, Jamison and Earl Clark who was practically non existent on Sunday.