The Los Angeles Lakers fell to 15-17 and 11th place in the Western Conference after dropping Friday’s game against the crosstown rival Los Angeles Clippers.
Los Angeles was supposed to be an unstoppable force in the NBA this season after adding Steve Nash and Dwight Howard in the offseason, but the team has not been able to gel. That hasn’t stopped Kobe Bryant from having a career year.
Bryant leads the NBA in attempts per game with 22 and he is averaging more points per game than he has since 2006-07 season.
But could it be Bryant keeping the ball out of his teammates hands that is slowing down the Lakers production? At least one player, center Dwight Howard, indicated that could be the issue following the loss to the Clippers.
“Look at the difference between our team and theirs,” Howard said. “They just play together. They share the ball. Everybody’s excited when something happens. We have to be like that to be a great team.”
Howard is on to something. It is no secret that Kobe has been considered a ball hog in the past and his need for the ball has taken away from Steve Nash’s ability to run the ball and distribute the ball. There is perhaps no one in the league better at passing the rock than Nash, so the Lakers and Bryant would be wise to let him run the offense on a more consistent basis.