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NBA Los Angeles Lakers

Mike D’Antoni: The catalyst for the Los Angeles Lakers’ turnaround

Mike D'Antoni

Anthony Gruppuso-US PRESSWIRE


Mike D’Antoni has still not been court-side as the new Los Angeles Lakers coach but already we have seen a turnaround to their season.

Since the departure of Mike Brown we have seen a more up-tempo game which in turn has resulted in a high scoring game.

Since Brown’s sacking the Lakers have won four out of five games whilst scoring 100 points in all four wins putting to bed the 1-4 start, indicating a fruitful season is still in store of a team of superstars looking for success this year.

Kobe Bryant is happy with the coach’s new style, “He just lets us go out there and play,” the  five-time NBA champion Kobe Bryant told reporters about D’Antoni.

“It’s not like he has to be on top of us and stuff. He comes in before the game and tells us what we need to do, at half-time he comes in and tells us everything we need to adjust and we just go from there.

“We’re just picking apart the defense,” said Bryant, who recorded the 18th triple-double of his career in the Lakers’ 119-108 rout of the Houston Rockets on Sunday.

“We’re putting the defense in predicaments where they have to choose and we’re making them pay.”

If you were to look for areas of concerns then the defense would be one.The Phoenix Suns managed to score 61 points in the paint on Friday night.

Kobe however is resolute that there is nothing to worry about defensively.

“We just need to get a little sharper, defensively we’re doing okay. These last two teams that we played did a good job getting up and down, spacing the floor and making shots.”

Under a coaching change it was expected that there was to be a turnaround, but what makes this even more respectable is playing the faster game without point guards Steve Nash or Steve Blake.

Nash has now missed the last eight games and is expected to miss the rest of the week, with his return the Lakers can only continue to improve as they recover from their poor start to the season.