The Los Angeles Lakers are cruising along this season, having won 12 of their first 14 games and are running roughshod through the league through the first month of the season. Pau Gasol is playing the best basketball of his career (he didn't miss a single shot all game on Sunday, for instance), Kobe Bryant is still Kobe, and Lamar Odom has been putting up double-doubles with regularity. Better yet, the newcomers to the bench, Matt Barnes and Steve Blake, have fit in perfectly, providing a much-needed boost off the bench, as has Shannon Brown.â†µ
The Lakers have been amazingly fun to watch this season, with their league-best offense and strong overall play. In addition, writes C.A. Clark of the SB Nation blog Silver Screen and Roll, the Lakers' brand of basketball has been fun to play. Clark opines:â†µ
When I look at the Lakers this season, I don't see a group of professionals making sure that the effort is there regardless of how they are feeling. I see a bunch of friends who are playing with high energy because it's so much fun to play together. They aren't playing like a team who wants to rest the 4th quarter so that the 2nd night of a back to back won't be so difficult. They are playing like a group of guys playing pick up who know that one loss would mean the end of their fun. Steve Blake isn't exhibiting professionalism when he throws passes off the backboard, or 60 foot lobs . Kobe Bryant and Derek Fisher (and Matt Barnes and Steve Blake and and and) aren't acting professionally when they turn down open outside shots in favor of making the extra pass (or three) which lead to a dunk instead. When Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom turn the paint into a Harlem Globetrotters game, that's not professionalism.â†µ
The Lakers look for more fun this week, with games against Chicago, Utah, and Indiana.â†µ
For more great Lakers coverage, be sure to read Silver Screen and Roll.