Is Lack of Effort or Lack of Quality the Problem For the Los Angeles Lakers?

Mike D'Antoni

USA TODAY SPORTS

 

The Los Angeles Lakers have started the season off 9-12 and looking at the roster that is somewhat difficult to believe.

What is the reason for the disastrous start to the season, is it bad luck or is there not currently enough quality in the roster?

The disastrous start to the season has seen an incredible amount of turnovers in games and the defense has so far struggled. Kobe Bryant has been as good as ever but consistency from the rest of the roster has yet to be seen, and we have not even started with Dwight Howard’s ability to make a free throw.

The Lakers have lost seven out of their last 10 games and are currently sitting at 11th in the Western Conference. Coach Mike D’Antoni is aware of early season struggles.

“We’re struggling right now,” D’Antoni said after Sundays defeat against the Utah Jazz., “It’s not the offense. The offense is what it is, it’s not great.  It’s not smooth. We can change the offense, but there’s no excuse for giving up 117 points.”

With Steve Nash and Steve Blake out, Chris Duhon has playing in the point and against the Jazz he scored  12 points dished out 11 assists, but his counterpart, Mo Williams of the Jazz, scored 22 points and had nine assists.

Duhon admits that more effort is required.

“It’s my energy and effort level. It’s not about Xs and O’s, it’s just about effort, heart and getting it done.Until we do it, we’re going to continue to lose.” Dubon said.

With two star names out of the starting roster at the moment there is a distinct lack of quality D’Antoni has available. With the return of the two starters we will be able to see the talent spread out more evenly over the 48 minutes which will help the teams performances offensively and defensively.

Over the last couple of games we have seen an improvement in the performances of Antawn Jamison, and Metta World Peace has been one of the more consistent performers, but neither played well against the Jazz.

We all know that there is an abundance in quality within this Lakers roster, so why is it not working? High performances by a whole team on a regular basis seems to be the problem.

Jodie Meeks who scored 16 points coming off the bench does not agree with the notion that the poor performances is down to low levels of commitment.

“Everyone is playing hard,” Meeks said. “My job is to come in and give a lot of effort.  Whether I’m making shots or not, play hard on defense and space the floor. Everyone is playing with a sense of urgency.  We have got to find a way to win.”

Pau Gasol is also edging nearer to a return to the team who seems to really need to put in the performances or face the risk of the continued talk of being traded.

When looking at the rotation at the moment and the likes of Duhon, Darius Morris, Jamison, Jordan Hill and Meeks.

Dwight Howard himself confirmed that he is still yet to recover from an injury he picked up back in April, despite improving as the season goes on.

The Lakers will surely improve as the season continues, with the return of Nash, but for how much longer in the season can we really write about how long will it take for the Lakers to turn around their season?

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