The Lakers need to replenish the basketball IQ they’ve lost since 2020

Editor’s Note: When a team underperforms in 2021-22 lakers Indeed, it is critical that decision makers in organizations not only figure out what went wrong, but also incorporate what they have learned into future decisions. In this series of posts, Darius Soriano will explore some of the Lakers’ lessons this season and why they were so important to their downfall. Next, let’s see if the basketball IQ that has left the team since the team won the 2019-20 championship needs a bit more.

Frank Vogel sat on the podium, his 2020 NBA championship cap and jersey soaked in champagne.His face reflects both his career achievements and the hard road his team has taken to get there: a preseason trip to China It doesn’t feel so safe when you get there.this Kobe Bryant tragically passes awayA global pandemic put their season on hold indefinitely, and now they’re fighting for the title while being quarantined in a bubble and isolated from family and friends for more than 100 days.

While he answered every question thoroughly, and defined by the genuine thoughtfulness he brought in his first season as Lakers coach, he was asked to elaborate on earlier comments about how special LeBron James was.

Vogel noted that it’s too hard to come up with an example, and he turned to what it’s like to work with someone as basketball-minded as LeBron:

“Every day we were filming and we were talking about our team. Every day, before training or before a game, I would talk to him and say ‘this is what I see, this is how I feel about the team, That’s where I think we can move in. I think we can move some needles in that direction.

“Decisiveness is an incredible quality. To have his mind and be able to use him as a resource, to work with him…things I see and believe on tape, with his mind…on how to move forward The decision to move forward to collaborate on our group…I don’t know if you can point to an instance. Every day in the movie, he’s leading our team to get better. I don’t think people can underestimate that.”

Vogel, a true basketball nerd, found a nerdy sidekick in LeBron James and won a championship with the rest of his players and coaches. How can you not love?

If you made a list of attributes of what qualities an NBA champion possesses, what would you mention first?

talent? certainly. Resilience (mental and physical)? I hope so. Shot creation? really. defense? given. shooting? Baseline level of course, but probably not at the top of the list (shouts Mike Trudell). play? certainly. Wing size? In today’s NBA, This is absolutely a must.

How’s your basketball IQ? yes. Absolutely, fundamentally, yes.

But whether it’s because of putting more emphasis on some other things, or not paying enough attention in the first place, I don’t think we often talk about how important basketball IQ is in the context of winning high-level NBA games. Especially in the playoffs.

As you enter the final stages of any season — the moment when the championship is decided — you can make certain assumptions about the makeup of the teams involved. They’re certainly many of the attributes listed above, from talent to toughness to baseline levels of offensive and defensive ability — depending on their team status — that may be skewed more in one direction than the other.

But, I think, in the endgame, one of the things that makes you stand out is how much collective basketball intelligence you have. Because having more of these teams and being able to outsmart other teams by bringing more basketball IQ to the table has an undeniable advantage. In its most basic form, it is the ability to diagnose a problem, find an appropriate solution, and then turn observations into action faster than an adversary.

I would say it’s important.

Looking back at how the Lakers went from winning a championship two seasons ago to missing the playoffs completely this year, it’s worth noting how much collective wisdom has left the franchise, whether through trade, free agency or just apparently acquired elsewhere New and better opportunities.

Consider the list below, in league circles, based on what we’ve witnessed firsthand, I think they’re very smart basketball minds, and when the Lakers won the 2020 championship, they were in the organization, off-season as we navigated After only 2 years, no longer with the team:

  • Frank Vogel
  • Jason Kidd
  • Jared Dudley
  • Alex Caruso
  • Danny Green

Regardless of anyone’s personal opinion of these people, and sometimes the lack of their own unique perspective, it’s more important when you put so many people in the same room and compare them to LeBron James and Anthony David When combined, you simply have a greater ability to spot problems and find tactical solutions than removing one (or, in the case of last season’s Lakers, most of them).

Nor is this necessarily an afterthought. Not so many people associated with the team are talking about how much their respective basketball IQs have helped the team to a championship at the moment, even in the coming season, even when dealing with key issues, just to keep them centered and able to Injured to win the game.

Whether it is reported that LeBron James sees Jason Kidd as “the only one who sees the game of basketball with (LeBron’s) clarity”, Kyle Kuzma praises the team for their work in the movie room Crucial for them to build chemistry and win championships, LeBron takes note The chemistry between him and Alex Caruso “goes with their minds”, or Frank Vogel praises Jared Dudley’s IQ As he was instrumental in helping the team in the early stages of that championship season, the Lakers have always credited their collective intelligence to their collective intelligence, and even if it all feels a little brag, it clearly makes a difference.

Of course, it’s frustrating to see so many thoughts like this walk out the door, even if in some cases, it’s understandable. Yes, the transaction happened. And, when coaches have opportunities to advance from assistant to head coaching positions, you always want them to take advantage of those opportunities. So, in the case of Danny Green and Jason Kidd, you just understand that the team is either trying to actively improve or wants the best from one of their coaches.

However, since some situations are simply attrition occurring within the organization, you need to take some careful consideration when deciding who to keep when and how to replace those who leave.Whether it is Basically forcing Dudley out the door or Low key Caruso to the point where he had to leave, the Lakers may not do that. And, I think, they suffer for that choice.

The Lakers are at a crossroads this offseason, and they have another chance to reshape their roster, but their coaching staff. While the goal is (and always should be) to build the most talented team with the resources available, I do hope that whoever makes the decision understands the brain drain that has occurred over the past two seasons and seeks to correct that as well. Because while there are many reasons why teams can get stuck, ignoring how much this part of the equation has contributed to past success can be damaging to the organization.

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