Jerry West to Lakers: Beware the Celtics

Both young guys, Bynum and Rondo, are different players. They play at different positions so it really doesn’t make sense to compare the two. What we can compare is their value to their respective teams. Take Rondo out of the equation; does it drastically change the Celtics’ chances of winning? Do the same for the Lakers and Bynum.

Here lies the problem. Bynum’s pace in getting back on defense is not quite fast enough compared to the pace in which Rondo is effectively setting up his teammates. The Celtics lead the league in assists and are second in points allowed.

Translation: they’re doing well on both ends of the floor.

It’s no secret that Rondo is a hesitant shooter. There’s a reason why Bryant backs off and gives him space on defense. For starters, it’s not Rondo’s game to hike up shots and he can’t burn the Lakers if he tried. Even so, giving Rondo space is probably the worst thing Bryant could do. With space, Rondo can survey the floor and set-up his teammates effectively. If he can’t, he can still rely on his speed to get into the lane, collapse the defense and kick out the ball to Ray Allen or Paul Pierce.

Okay, so all the Lakers have to do is keep someone on Rondo at all times? That’s easier said than done. You be the one to tell Bryant to not be such a floater on defense when Rondo is on the floor.

Unless the Lakers make a concerted effort on defense, move the ball around, play inside-out on offense and take advantage of their big men in the middle, as West predicts, the Celtics may be too much to handle even if they are within the same age group.

Next: Health is the ultimate factor, Lakers should treat West’s comments as a warning

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