2011-12 Season Grade – C
The Los Angeles Lakers acquired Ramon Sessions on the NBA’s trading deadline, the same day in which the front-office shipped away long-time guard Derek Fisher. Fisher helped the Lakers win five NBA titles and the fan base absolutely loved him. Sessions came in with the pressure to replace Fisher and give the Lakers something new at the point guard position.
The Lakers lacked a quick and explosive point guard and the front-office hope Sessions could provide that. He was a solid back-up for the Cleveland Cavaliers, but the expectations in Los Angeles were something he never faced before. In fact, Sessions had never played in the post-season prior to joining the Lakers.
The Western Conference is chalk-full of young point guards and the Lakers understood that they needed to do something in order to combat them in the post-season. Sessions was still in his twenties and a lot of people were anxious to see what he could do for this team.
Sessions recorded seven points and five assists in his Lakers’ debut off the bench and the team was confident in the new guard. He provided that speed the squad wanted and his starting role was essentially his. Sessions’ break-out game came against the Dallas Mavericks where he was the catalyst to the Lakers’ surge. Sessions had 17 points, nine assists and five rebounds off the bench and guided the Lakers to a win.
However, as the post-season neared Sessions fell off the radar and was not that dynamic playmaker he once was. The Lakers were relying more on Kobe Bryant and Andrew Bynum, and Sessions was not being very aggressive with the ball. He was clearly playing off adrenaline and excitement for his first couple of games for the Lakers, but eventually that died down.
Sessions did play well in the opening round as he scored in double-digits in five of the seven games. Sessions was still out-played by Ty Lawson and his competition got stiffer against the Thunder and Russell Westbrook.
In the second round, Sessions did not perform well and combined for four points in the first two games and just three assists. Sessions disappeared while on the court and Westbrook made him a complete non-factor. Sessions did improve his game during the two games in Los Angeles, but there was never a defining moment for him in the series.
Sessions could opt out of his contract this off-season and become a free-agent. Sessions would like to receive a contract extension with the Lakers, but the front-office must decide whether or not Sessions is worth the investment.