Lakers News: Mike D’Antoni Looking For Right Lineup Combinations Reviewed by Momizat on . The Los Angeles Lakers lost a tough 91-85 game to the San Antonio Spurs tonight, dropping their record to 1-2. Even without Tim Duncan, the Spurs were the team The Los Angeles Lakers lost a tough 91-85 game to the San Antonio Spurs tonight, dropping their record to 1-2. Even without Tim Duncan, the Spurs were the team Rating:
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Lakers News: Mike D’Antoni Looking For Right Lineup Combinations

NBA: Philadelphia 76ers at Los Angeles LakersThe Los Angeles Lakers lost a tough 91-85 game to the San Antonio Spurs tonight, dropping their record to 1-2. Even without Tim Duncan, the Spurs were the team that executed down the stretch, outscoring the Lakers 7-1 after the game was tied at 80.

For the third straight game, the bench outscored the starters, this time 45-40 as Jordan Hill only played in the fourth quarter while Shawne Williams continued to not make contributions with the starters. On with TWC SportsNet, head coach Mike D’Antoni still said he needs to settle his rotations:

Hopefully with experience we won’t do that and I’m still searching for the right combinations. We’ve got to get that settled.

Leading by 13 points, Xavier Henry collided with Wesley Johnson, causing the game to stop for over 10 minutes in the second quarter and he received nine stitches in what was characterized as the turning point in the game.

Without Henry in the lineup, the Lakers were outscored 23-9 to end the first half as the Lakers couldn’t find their stroke, shooting just 37 percent for the entire game.

Under the current rotation, Williams gives the Lakers the spacing that D’Antoni likes, but it limits him to using just Chris Kaman or Hill with the second unit. One idea would be using Kaman with the starters alongside Pau Gasol, allowing Hill to backup Pau as Wesley Johnson has primarily played the power forward position this season.

Unlike last season, D’Antoni is afforded the privilege of stretching his bench to 11 players, but at some point, he’s going to need to tighten his rotations. Until he does that, the bench will continue to outscore the starters as the Lakers might look back at tonight’s loss as a game that definitely got away.

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Ross is a staff writer with LakersNation. He is a graduate of the University of Arizona. He is a huge sports fan and will keep you up to date with the latest sports news. Follow Ross on Twitter at @Ross_Gasmer12.

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  • ra

    It’s like a game of chess. Which are the pieces you want on the ‘court’? D’Antoni has sets of pieces that work great. He has to play a masterful game, for each team the Lakers play. They will have to watch lots of film, and D’Antoni needs to strategize. I’m guessing that different starting sets work for each opposing team. I know it’s best to go with one set starting 5, but this may be a different style of basketball strategy.

    Just like Chip Kelly – different styles of play might work ‘in game’. Chip is trying to implement a different type of offense in the NFL. Maybe D’Antoni can work a different style – an upgrade of his run & gun – for the NBA? That’s what I would do if I was in my 2nd year of coaching with the Lakers. Invent a new style, and that moves the NBA into a new phase (starring, the Lakers as the pioneering team).

    • Daryl Peek

      Mike Trudell ✔ @LakersReporter
      D’Antoni said his focus is on deciding on a rotation ASAP. Wants to get Hill more minutes while still getting Kaman on the floor.

      Encouraging news if he sticks to it.

      • ra

        I did hear D’Antoni mention that (deciding on a starting rotation ASAP). I don’t know if that’s possible now, is it? Also, I have a feeling that once it’s fixed, it’s subject to change, and then therefore it wont be fixed.

        It’s not like having Kobe-Nash-Gasol-Howard-MWP — easy to pick the starters in that case. For this team, it looks like several players can be both starters, and the 2nd unit. Not clear choices, are there?

        Who is playing well tonight? OK, how did they play last night? OK – and the night before that? It looks like there are no consistent players – except Gasol. Give the ball to Gasol, the veteran who was a world champion. Who else do we count on consistently?

        • Daryl Peek

          I think it’s more about finding more consistent minutes so a rhythm can be established. What he needs to do is come off his floor spacing penchant a bit and let Kaman start with Gasol. Williams is struggling big time. I know he doesn’t want to give on him yet but Pau and Kaman showed they play really well off each other and the floor spacing wont be that bad considering both big’s can knock down mid range jumpers. Kaman dives to the front of the rim better and more often than Williams. Shawn just stays on the outside and lacks in rebounding due to that coupled with his distance shooting struggles.

          MDA also needs to make a decision on Nash. Either play him or shut him down. We can’t keep going back and forth with his injury. A rhythm will never be established like that.

          • http://www.facebook.com/eddie.lazaro123 Eddie Lazaro

            I agree with you on Nash. Regarding Williams and Blake, there is nothing wrong with taking them out and putting in reliable players like hill and farmar to get the easily win games like last night.

          • Daryl Peek

            I have no problem with the second unit finishing the game if they have the hot hand.

  • LkaersHeatBeef

    Mad Scientist D’Antoni.

    • liplikr

      Unfortunately true :(

  • g_f_b

    everyone knows that hill is needed right from the very start but d’toni decided to field it in only at the fourth quarter…

  • seriousman

    I’m really disappointed with the coaching, the combination is way ridiculous a lot of times..worst decision made with the combination rotations from the lakers…especially when steve blake is out there for tons of minutes to allow opponents to score easily… i suggest D’Antoni to limit steve blake minutes, and dont ever put both steve on the floor together. Thats is a killing surrender move because they dont defense and their efficiency is very low.

    • lakersfan

      i agreed with you that steve blake is the most terrible guy on the floor, and all time top five worst defenders LMAO

    • Daryl Peek

      Gotta expect experimentation at this early stage. This is a very raw new team. Blake had 9 assist, struggled shooting and no one keeps Parker in check, period.

      • liplikr

        So, you think Blake is the answer?

  • Daryl Peek

    Let me break it down for all the Blake haters:

    Blake is struggling from the field shooting but that’s it. All the rest of his numbers are above his career averages so far. He’s shooting 43% from three, averaging 5 assist a game, 3 rebounds, leading the team in steals at 1.3 a game, and has the best assist to turnover ratio only averaging 1 turnover a game.

    In comparison Farmar is averaging 5 assist and 2.7 turnovers in 5 less minutes a game. Nash is averaging 5 assist and 2.5 turnovers a game in 6 less minutes a game than Blake.

    In conclusion haters need to back up off Blake cause he’s donig much better than your eye test is telling you.

    • o.d.e

      yeah agreed, blake is average ok except for his defense… but i would still vote farmar to take nash point guard position and both blake and nash on sub… blake shouldn’t be a sg coz lakers can have more options like nick young, henry…

      i always like lakers to go big and strong.. defense and good ball movement priority

      • Daryl Peek

        When you look at the assist to turnover ratio you have to come to the conclusion Blake is better suited to run the offense than Farmar is with the starters if Nash is not available. Again the eye test is fooling you. Blake is guarding bigger SG’s and doing an admirable job. The fact that he’s leading the team in steals shows his defense is just fine.

        • liplikr

          Look, I love Steve Blake, but his time has come and gone.

          Look at what Farmer brings defensively and the energy he brings on offense,,,can Blake do that? Night in and night out?

          I don’t think so

          • Daryl Peek

            If Blake were tuning the ball over that much MDA would reduce his role also. Farmar is where he needs to be. With the second unit. They have a great chemistry and we should not break that up.

    • Jim213

      Not a hater DP, but it has to translate on both sides of the court. Have to see consistency but he did shoot 2-12 too.Just throwing it in that’s all. But everyone else struggled too.

      • Daryl Peek

        How so? His shooting is the only thing that’s inconsistent right now. And it’s not his three point shooting. Keep in mind Blake is a career back up PG starting at SG right now. He’s never gonna be that consistent beast at PG or SG. He will drain timely threes and play gritty defense consistently.

        Farmar is shooting the ball well and is dishing it good too but he’s turning the ball over at an alarming rate against back ups. That would be even worse against starters. No one has established any level of overall consistency on the team yet. People want to point fingers in the middle of a learning process, myself included… I’m being overly harsh on Gasol. I’m getting impatient with MDA and the fact that he does not want to do the obvious, start Kaman with Gasol. MDA don’t want to give up on Williams and loves Johnson at the 4. He may be proven right but that experiment has led to Gasol staying on the perimeter so far and his numbers are fools gold IMO.

        • liplikr

          Impatient is putting it mildly.

          Where’s Jordan Hill in the rotation?

          Look, if the message from upstairs is to ‘tank’, then fine, but when you refuse to play your best rebounder then the writing is on the wall!

      • Daryl Peek

        Actually I take that back. Meeks is the one player that has established consistency. 52% FG, 42% 3pt shooting, 91% FT (on 4 attempts a game, not bad) 14 pts, 4 reb, 1 assist, 1 steal, and 2 turnovers a game.

        Meeks is having a breakout season so far.

    • liplikr

      Seriously? Blake’s shooting (as a supposed ‘very good’ shooter) is killing us.
      Farmar should be playing many more minutes than Blake.
      (Spoken as a Blake supporter)

      • Daryl Peek

        Farmar is turning the ball over too much against back ups. You can’t justify starting him over Blake given that.

  • locusten

    it’s very frustrating seeing Hill with such a limited playing time.. He’s certainly the best guy for rebound and 2nd chance point with 18.9% PIE !
    And instead we play those who can’t defend nor rebound!!
    If Lakers rely on only floor spacing and 3 pointers, we are DOOMED. And I hate hearing MDA saying things like “our guys don’t make shots” as if it’s an issue of luck-

    If Lakers don’t defend, rebound, and go inside out, a long-range jump shooting team like we are now is destined for losses after losses!

  • Badeng

    C’mon, D’Antoni! Still looking for the combinations? I thought that was what camp and pre-season was all about? Now it’s game time and we are still experimenting while accumulating numbers on the Loss column?

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