Photo: Stephen Dunn/Getty Images
The Lakers are 0-7 in the preseason for a very simple reason: depth.The starting five of Steve Nash, Kobe Bryant, Metta World Peace, Pau Gasol, and Dwight Howard is terrifying. But look what the bench guys have done in seven games:
- Jordan Hill: 11 ppg, 5.5 rpg, 52.6% shooting in 23 minutes per game
- Devin Ebanks: 9.3 ppg, 2.3 rgp, 45.7% shooting in 17 mpg
- Antawn Jamison: 4.7 ppg, 5.1 rpg, 28.6% shooting in 23 mpg
- Steve Blake: 3.5 ppg, 2.3 apg, 1.5 turnovers per game, 36.4% shooting in 14 mpg
Throw in Andrew Goudelock, Chris Duhon, and maybe Robert Sacre and that’s your Lakers bench this year.
The 0-7 record means nothing when it comes to how the starting five will do this year. But everyone knew the Lakers had depth issues coming into training camp, and the preseason — where these bench guys are playing the bulk of the minutes — has done nothing to suppress those fears.
Come playoff time, LA’s lack of depth won’t mean much. They can play their starting five a bunch of minutes and shorten their rotation to 8.
But the bench issues will really hurt them over the course of the regular season, where guys like Jamison and Blake will be playing meaningful minutes night after night. With so little depth, LA is going to struggle to compete with loaded like San Antonio and Oklahoma City for the No. 1 seed in the West.
It’s still a great team that’s built for the playoffs, but it’s not the 65-win juggernaut some envisioned when Nash and Howard landed in LA.
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