Lakers defense is offensive

Metta World Peace pulls in a rebound against the Philadelphia 76ers' Dorrell Wright and Thaddeus Young.
(Michael Perez / Associated Press)

The Lakers are the only team with a losing record in the league to have scored more points this season than they’ve given up.

It’s not much of a consolation prize: The Lakers are in 10th place in the Western Conference at 15-20, 4 1/2 games behind the Portland Trail Blazers. The Lakers are averaging 103.2 points per game while giving up 101.7, a difference of 1.5 points.

Where the Lakers are primarily lacking is on defense. Only four teams allow more points a game (Charlotte Bobcats, Houston Rockets, Dallas Mavericks and Sacramento Kings).


The Lakers shoot a solid 45.4% from the field (11th overall) but they’ve fallen to 18th in field goal defense (45.1%). Free-throw shooting remains an issue as the Lakers at 69.2% are better than just the Denver Nuggets (67.7%).

Their opponents average 23.6 assists per game, making the Lakers the second-worst team in the league behind the Charlotte Bobcats (25.5).

The Lakers also average 15.3 turnovers a game, fourth-worst overall behind the Rockets, Oklahoma City Thunder and Golden State Warriors). The Lakers are the 25th in forcing turnovers at just 13.7 a game.

No other team in the league fouls as often as the Lakers (23.4 a game). They also don’t generate a high volume of steals (19th overall at 7.5).

On the bright side, the Lakers rebound well and block a lot of shots.

They just don’t win a lot of games.


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