Here’s a brief breakdown of tonight’s matchup against the Denver Nuggets:
We will see a familiar foe tonight in Anaheim and tomorrow night in San Diego. The Denver Nuggets have championship aspirations after taking us to six games in the western conference finals last spring. Their nucleus is back and they have a few new faces to replace Linas Kleiza and Dahntay Jones. This team bought into Coach George Karl’s challenge of playing team defense. We know we need to protect the ball or it will turn into a Nugget Dunk-fest. Chauncey Billups drives the squad and he usually starts games trying to get others involved but if he feels the team struggling to score he can and will kick his offensive game into a more scoring minded approach.
Some teams will slice and dice you with the execution of a number of playsets. While Denver has some plays that we will need to be aware of, they really want to get steals and get out and run. Billups and Anthony will look to probe the defense. There will be a lot of random screen and rolls set in order to free them and create an advantage. It is the secondary offensive thrust that we must be ready to defend. Getting back on defense in order to take away easy dunks is step one and that requires a physical effort. In order to take away their secondary or early offense we will need to communicate because there will be situations where we are not in our normal match-ups.
With two games left in the exhibition season it is time to gear up our intensity and this is a good opponent in order to do that.
Check Lakers Courtside Connection during the regular season for more extensive previews including video breakdowns.