With Steve Nash’s playing days looking numbered, the Lakers are soon going to be seeking a starting point guard that can fill the “all-star” void that he’ll be leaving. Perhaps the best option this off-season would be to acquire Kyle Lowry, the unrestricted free agent that may well be leaving Toronto to peruse new horizons. This season, he’s posting positive numbers after a mediocre first year with the Raptors that include him contributing 7.3 assists per game as well as 16.1 points. He’s a good rebounder and wouldn’t come at such a great expense for the team (or at least he wouldn’t demand a max contract). What’s not to like?
Whilst his stats are impressive on paper, serious questions would be asked about his ability to fit into Mike D’Antoini’s system. His conditioning has acted as something of a roadblock in his nine year career and in a “Run N’ Gun” system, he may well have issues fitting in. He’s also not the most efficient scorer either as outside of this year, he’s only shooting 41.8% FG in his entire career. Put this stat alongside his 34.8% 3FG% and suddenly his numbers this year start to look a lot less impressive.
Although he doesn’t shoot the ball with the finest touch, he’s got quick, precise hands and is an electric defender. For a six foot guard, his ability to match players stronger and taller than him is quite remarkable. Sadly, this one-on-one confidence does not stretch to both ends of the court as he carries a very questionable jumpshot, especially when he’s forced to take a contested look at the basketball. For all the times he doesn’t shoot, he plays his game hard and that would add some much needed tenacity and explosiveness to the Lakers backcourt minus Bryant, Henry and Young.
Perhaps the biggest upside to acquiring Lowry is that his contract length would more than likely coincide with a certain player who is likened to a spider entering free agency. Whilst Marshall and Farmar are fairly strong offensive players, the Lakers would be best suited to having a player at the point who is either very strong on offense or on defence. Lowry would enable the team to use a fast, aggressive offensive point guard that would be able to certainly work hard on defence before they potentially pursue Russell Westbrook at the end of his contract and whilst he’s not the most well-rounded point guard in the league, Lowry would certainly keep the Lakers in the playoff picture and act as a great fill-in player in the pre-Westbrook (potentially, I know) era.