The Lakers have struggled to find an offensive rhythm this season, and they are still searching for what works and what doesn’t. While their performances have improved over the last several games, the team doesn’t have a concrete identity to live and die by, especially when facing diversity.
Mike D’Antoni’s offensive system is dramatically different than Phil Jackson’s triangle system, which brought the Lakers so much success in the past. Kobe Bryant recently gave an interview to Jack McCallum of Sports Illustrated in which he was asked to compare the two systems and the two teams that represent each period.
SI: In a perfect world, would this offense look like it did with you and Shaq when you won three consecutive titles in the early 2000s?
Bryant: Nah, different personalities, different personnel. With this team, we have to mix it up. But all of it is predicated off of penetration. We just have to read the defense better. We have to find different things every night and make them work. We do have the talent do that.
SI: The pick-and-rolls that [coach Mike] D’Antoni wants you to run and [Steve] Nash wants you to run, but Dwight doesn’t seem inclined to … didn’t you do a lot of pick-and-rolling with Shaq?
Bryant: We did. But it was different. We initiated the triangle offense from screen-roll action. It was a way for us to get into our offense.
The Lakers hope to make a late run for the postseason, but need to continue to be on the same page collectively, as they were on Wednesday night against Boston. The Lakers take on the Portland Trail Blazers tonight at Staples Center.