The Los Angeles Lakers cannot expect to beat the Dallas Mavericks shooting the way they did against the Memphis Grizzlies.
The Los Angeles Lakers are on a three-win stretch, boasting a 3-1 record tarnished by the only loss in season opener at the hands of the Los Angeles Clippers.
So far, the purple and gold have been all we expected from them, displaying a tenacious defense and a dominant offense run through Anthony Davis. The wins, however, have come against a Utah Jazz team deprived of one of his leading scorers, the Charlotte Hornets and the Memphis Grizzlies, both with low expectations and promises for the season.
Especially the Grizzlies game’s result (120-91) does not reflect the struggle the Lakers went through in the first three quarters. The Lakers experienced a bad shooting night, producing a terrible 27% from three and a moderately bad 46.6 percent from the field, which gets even worse if we count out JaVale McGee‘s personal 74.1 percent, entirely collected around the rim. It was not due to an overwhelming defensive effort by the Grizzlies either. They left them plenty of wide open looks, LA just could not make them.
The Lakers’ struggles kept Memphis in the game for more than a half, and they managed to get away thanks to Anthony Davis’ performance, which mostly came at the free throw line. The final garbage time helped to widen the gap, with Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, who entered the quarter 0-for-4 in the game, scoring 12 points when it mattered the least.
The Mavs, exhibiting an equal 3-1 record, look like a team on the rise ready to make some noise in the Western Conference thanks to the Rookie of the Year and his All-Star pal dragging the ship under coach Rick Carlisle‘s directions.
They are a young and energetic team, eager to run the floor and shoot at a high rate behind Doncic’s creative plays. In their last game they beat the Denver Nuggets on the road, despite a not brilliant shooting night and Doncic and Porzingis limited to 12 and 10 points respectively.
The Lakers cannot afford to play like they did against the Grizzlies. Such a performance will not allow them to remain afloat at the American Airlines Center. A first half of the same kind we saw last night will pave the way for an easy victory for the Mavericks, crushing LA’s hopes to make a comeback in the second half.