The Lakers are 0-4! Celebrate! *
* A few small disclaimers:
1. They're 0-4 in the preseason, which, just like in football, doesn't mean a damn thing. These are basically glorified scrimmages that the NBA puts on TV so we can pretend that our teams have unlocked that last, secret door that stood between them and an NBA championship: "OH HELL YEAH, I MEAN, YOU JUST DON'T KNOW HOW MUCH OF AN X-FACTOR JOSH CHILDRESS IS GOING TO BE FOR US THIS YEAR." (Josh Childress currently plays for the Hoboken Nets. I mean, the Staten Island Nets. I mean, the Bronx Nets. Dammit.)
2. Most of these guys have played together for all of about 37 seconds. The Lakeshow totally revamped its roster this offseason, retaining only Pau Gasol, Metta World Peace, Kobe Bryant, Jordan Hill, Devin Ebanks, Steve Blake, Andrew Goudelock, and Darius Morris (?) from the 2011-12 squad. So when Robert Sacre (BLEU), Steve Nash, Antawn Jamison, and Jodie Meeks all start one or more of these preseason games, and none of them have ever played together, there's bound to be some growing pains.
3. Minutes played per game by the five presumed Lakers opening day starters:
Pau Gasol: 19
Metta World Peace: 25
Steve Nash: 19
Kobe Bryant: 24.25
Dwight Howard: 0
Also, it should be clarified that of those 24.25 minutes per game on the floor, Kobe's been spending 18.75 of them thinking about Smush Parker.
4. Overall, the team has shot below 40% in every single one of these preseason games, which is highly unlikely to remain the case in the regular season. Last year's worst-shooting team, the Charlotte Bobcats — surprise! — still managed 41.4% from the field, and the league average was 44.8%.
5. What these games do call attention to is a potential problem of depth that could face the Lakers if — more like when — their aged core of Bryant, Nash, Peace, and Gasol deal with injuries. Antawn Jamison has been terrible, going 8-29 from the floor over the course of the four games, and the only players to score in double-digits outside the core have been Devin Ebanks, Jordan Hill, and Jodie Meeks.
6. Dwight Howard hasn't played yet. We're all still doomed.
7. If there's anyone who can screw this up, though, it's Mike Brown.