Lakers

Arnab Bose

NBA

Los Angeles Lakers Likely To Lose Their Edge On Free Throws Next Season! How?

The Los Angeles Lakers did not have a great start last season. But they turned things around in mid-season after brilliant trades right before the February deadline. At one point, it looked as if the Lakers were not going to make the postseason. It was because there was no balance in the roster prior to the mid-season trades. However, the front office made sure the roster found balance, and they did. It changed the course of the season for the Lakers. Moreover, the LA side not only made the postseason but also reached the Western Conference Finals.

Austin Reaves, Rui Hachimura, and D’Angelo Russell were heading towards free agency. But they made sure these three key players stayed with multi-year contracts. Even after executing the plans pretty well, there is one thing that might hurt the Lakers next season. It is the number of free throws the Lakers can get to shoot. They may lose the advantage of free throw attempts in 2023-24. Moreover, the Lakers enjoyed a huge lead over the rest in getting the opportunity to free throws.

   

What If The Lakers Don’t Get Free Throw Attempts That Often?

Anthony Davis Lakers Vs Nikola Jokic
Anthony Davis Lakers Vs Nikola Jokic Source: Sporting News

Perhaps the structure of the offense of the LA side helped the team get more chances for free throws. However, things can change if the Lakers dip next season. According to Bleacher Report’s Andy Bailey, the 17-time champions got a staggering 597 more attempts of free throws than their opponents last season. It was on record as the 26th biggest spread. Moreover, it was 394 more than the Laker’s closest competitors last season.

How big the difference is between the number of free throws the Lakers got to attempt and the team in second place is pretty visible. The gap between the LA side and the team in second place is greater than the gap between the second-place team and the 28th team. However, since the Lakers are keeping the core together, there is a chance that it won’t make much of a difference in the offensive structure. It is essential that the Lakers find a new game plan that does not require them to win free throw calls all the time.

LeBron James Is Still Among The Top Wings In The League

LeBron James Lakers
LeBron James Lakers Source: NBC Sports

On the other hand, the Lakers can always bet on LeBron James, who is still among the top wings of the league. Last season, LeBron James proved that age can bring injury concerns but would never change his dominating style of play. The King keeps proving the naysayers and doubters wrong all the time. Moreover, Bleacher Report’s Eric Pincus states LeBron James can still take over the playoff games. He had an average of 28.9 ppg, 8.3 RPG, and 6.8 apg last season. Moreover, Bleacher Reports states LeBron James was the second-best wing last season after Jayson Tatum of the Boston Celtics.

Despite injuries, the two stars of the team – LeBron James and Anthony Davis led the side pretty well. AD transformed the team into the best defense of the season. However, they were not strong enough to stop the best attack of the season. The force of Nikola Jokic and Jamal Murray of the Denver Nuggets was just too much to handle for the Lakers. Moreover, the Nuggets blew the Lakers away in just four games in the WCF. It was a pretty humiliating end to the campaign for the purple and gold army. However, it seems the front office has plenty of faith in the roster. Hence, they made sure this core stayed together for the next season as well.