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LeBron James Takes Control of the Lakers



LEBRON JAMES LOOK more like LeBron James old over the past few weeks. Well, except Tuesday.

His winnings are going up, and his influence on the games in the Los Angeles Lakers also intensified. It is not by chance that they won more. They won seven out of 10, even after losing 32 points in the Denver Nuggets.

Is it because he has become more comfortable in his new environment? Of course, this probably plays a role.

Is it because his teammates are learning to play with him and vice versa? Without a doubt.

But this, apparently, is not the real basis for this. It seems that James is back in the groove, so this is what he returned to his comfort zone, again playing a lot of points. It was not designed in this way, but this is what he did more and more often as the season grows old, and especially after Rajon Rondo sank because of a broken arm.

Since Rondo had to leave the game in Portland and subsequently carry out the operation, James handles the ball almost a minute more per game than before, according to tracking data from the second Spectrum. This is a significant surge, because the Lakers have so many things where they push the ball during the transition period that the impact statistics may be slightly distorted. During this period, James increased his average score for five points in the game.

In fact, his statistics improved in all directions, especially his shooting, which has skyrocketed since Rondo fell. Lakers benefits. Even the “official starting point of guarding” Lonso Ball fills the lanes with quick breaks and leaves his shell at the insistence of James.

The advanced scouts who tracked the Lakers' message show that the Ball often becomes defenseless when James is in a game with him. It is enough to ask whether this agreement is really their fate in playing together in the future, especially if the ball can improve its external shooting and demonstrate its willingness to control the ball, as in recent games. Bol got a sprained ankle on Tuesday, which could temporarily slow him down and add an even longer duty to James in the short term.

This is probably due to the fact that the ball and control over the crime – this is how James has been trained to play most of the past 15 seasons. He won the MVP and titles acting as a de facto guard. This is who he is, even if he tends to mentally and physically deplete him at times.

James grumbled to Cavs management about having more playmakers on the roster to ease this burden in recent years. The point is not that the Cavs coaches and the front office ignored him – just all their data showed that they were better when James was the main playmaker. They regretted / did not regret not taking the ball from him.

When James approached the Lakers, he enjoyed the idea of ​​playing the ball more, using his skills after a workout, and usually spending less energy. It was the idea of ​​signing Rondo, and Lance Stevenson … that would ease the need for James to make so many creations.

But since those who have been around James for many years will tell you, there is a July version of James when he sits on the couch with a glass of wine and talks about basketball philosophy. And there is a version of the middle of the season, James, who wants to win above the rest and trust himself all the others to make it happen. As usual, the latter manifests itself when the games accumulate.

When Rondo was active, he and Ball shared the guard duties, some of which occurred. Playing along with Rondo, James averaged less time to own in games than players like Zach Lavin and Jamal Murray. When Rondo came out, time was beating James up there with John Wall, Russell Westbrook and Chris Paul. Basically, where he was for years.

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And these post bots? James averages twice the number of posts per game, as is the case with Cavs. He cannot publish, because most of the time the Lakers either breaks quickly or relies on James to be a playmaker in the attack.

Scouts also noticed that when James works, he rarely looks at the bench to get playoffs from coach Luke Walton. Even when he saw them, the scouts say he ignores them and controls the game he prefers. Walton has adapted, and now that James launches the show, Walton usually just lets him call the game. It probably should not be considered easy – it's just James, who is James.

In fact, Walton did a fine job with limiting James’s minutes and using the depth he had in the rear to try to ease the load so James could be a little fresher. He averages a 35-minute career.

Even if it took him a little time for Walton to understand how comfortable James was in turning. At the beginning of the season, there was a game in Minnesota, when Walton removed James for just five minutes into the game, trying to establish a turn, so that James could finish every quarter. James was, to put it mildly, puzzled.

Bottom line, all the more positive for the Lakers. James returns to his comfort zone, whether in the original game plan or not, it helps.


Derrick Rose is shooting a 46 percent career at 3 points this season. Brace Hemmelgarn / USA TODAY Sport

LEAGUE-PERFORMERS VIEW DERRICK ROSE with laughter of surprise and skepticism, as he continues to get the best season from 2011 to 2011, when he was the last All-Star and before his first knee injury.

After Rose's game was blurred and several times it looked like he was on the verge of leaving the league, his sudden development in the point in the modern style was amazing.

Rosa shoots 46 percent this season on 3 pointers and a whopping 54 percent in the last nine games. This is the guy who, in the last four years, shot only 27 percent on 3 signs and was so bad that he mostly tried to stop. Right now, he has the highest true percentage of shooting and effective percentage of field goal in his career. Not to mention the fact that it looks explosive on the floor.

It’s rare, but not impossible, for a player to suddenly wake up. Some executives wondered if Rose was turning into a decade in his career, like Jason Kidd, who turned from a poor 3-point shooter to a good 30 years old. Others say they will wait for him to do it for a long period.

This is honest. So indicates that Rose has his best PER and the highest plus / minus since he suffers from knee injuries.

Minnesota Timberwolves coach Tom Thibodeau doubles this splash of Rose. He experimented with closing games with Rose and starting quarterback Jeff Teague playing together.

Rose is, at a minimum, a funny player, and his extrajudicial questions further complicate him. He is also not the protector he was. But he no doubt turned into one of the most fascinating stories in the league at the moment.

So, by the way, there are also Wolves. After being traded by Jimmy Butler, they were 5-2 and had the third best defense in the league.


FURNACES CAN BE BACK to their version of the “process” in the coming months. When James first left in 2010, owner Dan Gilbert continued to spend on his registry, but in a different way. He was ready to take on a salary in exchange for appeals, as the Cavs loaded their coffers with assets in addition to their own lottery elections. When James returned, they were able to convert these assets into large transactions.

In conversations that the Cavs had around the league, they began to declare that they would be ready to take on a long-term salary as the trade dates approached, sources in the league said. Cavs have a couple of veterans with whom they are going to trade.

It is expected that Kyle Corver will be the most interested, who withdraws 46 percent on 3 points, but they also have an attractive contract with George Hill, who earns $ 19 million this season and has only $ 1 million guaranteed next season . Hill, who left due to a shoulder injury, went for a good start, averaging 12.6 points and shooting 48 percent on 3 pointers in 10 games.

In the summer there is plenty of room for salary, and books of other teams are now in better shape than a year or two ago. It is unclear which market will move money, especially if this includes the desire to choose in the 2019 project. Nevertheless, Cavs are ready to look for several years, and the readiness to be a dump for a contract may become relevant both in February and in June for the project.


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