There were plenty of scrutiny regarding chemistry and egos for the Lakers long before the doors of the Toyota Sports Center opened for training camp.
Last Sunday in their pre-season opener against the Golden State Warriors in Fresno, most of those doubts have been erased in just the first 24 minutes of the game. A lot of the credit has to go to Steve Nash for that.
From the get-go, Nash directed traffic on offense as if he’s been running the hybrid Princeton offense for years. Same goes for the rest of the starters for the most part of the game. Guys were moving the ball around the halfcourt until either Nash sees an opening or the defense failed to keep up with the constant movement of the offense.
When Mike Brown got the news that Nash became a Laker, he worked tirelessly with new assistant coach Eddie Jordan to tweak the Princeton offense around the former 2-time MVP. Those changes basically allows Nash to break the comformity of the Princeton offense as soon as and everytime he sees an opportunity to make a play for his teammates as well as for himself.
Of course, those audible plays could range within Nash’s seemingly infinite imagination. Against the Warriors, Laker fans got a glimpse of how the Laker offense will entertain them this season.
Nash’s first assist in purple and gold involved a brisk bounce pass through Warrior rookie center Festus Ezeli‘s legs to a cutting Robert Sacre for an easy layup over Brandon Rush. A few minutes later, it was a devious cross-over on Jarrett Jack to get himself all alone behind the arc for a 3-pointer. After that, it was a running floater over the outstretched arm of Warrior rookie guard Charles Jenkins.
Aside from some poor transitional defense, the Lakers starting unit looked good! There was no sign or evidence that chemistry and egos will get in the way of what this team wants to do this season even when they welcome Dwight Howard for the first time as a Laker.
If anything, it remains to be seen how well their chemistry on offense translate to their passion in playing defense. That and if they’ll continue to work with one another on offense when everything seems to be stacked against them.
But with Nash at the point, it will probably take a monumental discord between the superstars for the Laker offense to self-destruct.
So far, it doesn’t look like that’s gonna happen.
Game Highlights (by LakersHDHighlights24)