After acquiring Steve Nash via sign-and-trade, the Los Angeles Lakers became considerably better in the backcourt with arguably one of the best point guards in the league. Even though Nash is 38 years-old, the addition of the two-time NBA MVP still greatly improves the team moving forward with the future Hall of Famer potentially being the missing piece to the championship puzzle in Los Angeles.
As arguably one of the most excited players on the Lakers about this move, Kobe Bryant claims that Nash will make the game that much easier for Pau Gasol according to ACB.com (translated from Spanish to English):
“Steve is a great distributor and the system we are using will be very different from last season. It is a blueprint for Pau for their ability to pass, make plays from the low post and take his shots from the high post.”
Gasol stands to benefit from Nash’s arrival more than most. With Nash being the master of the pick-and-roll and getting teammates involved, Gasol will almost certainly see a bump in his points per game next season. Kobe and Andrew Bynum (or Dwight Howard) also stand to benefit with many more open looks at the basket.
Along with Gasol benefiting from Nash running the point, the Lakers’ offense will definitely look much different next season. Nash will be able to get this offense moving much quicker with shot clock violations being a thing of the past for the Lakers.
Even though Nash will immediately impact the Lakers’ offense and his new teammates, Los Angeles still needs to bring in another offensive threat off the bench. The addition of veteran forward Antawn Jamison was a smart move by the Lakers’ front office, but another guard or small forward with the ability to play in the backcourt is sorely needed.
GM Mitch Kupchak and company are exploring their options with a few candidates on the list of potential free agent acquisitions. The Lakers are looking for a guard that is solid from outside with the ability to create his own shot. Leandro Barbosa and Jodie Meeks are intriguing options as long as one of the two they’re willing to take the veteran’s minimum of $1.4 million.