The Los Angeles Lakers are mulling whether or not they should start Steve Nash and Steve Blake in the same backcourt to open up the series against the San Antonio Spurs. According to the Los Angeles Times, the Lakers “were leaning toward” starting both Blake and Nash, and the significance here is that they would be starting two point guards in the same backcourt. Nash is “very optimistic” that he will be able to play against the Spurs, so it sounds like Nash’s hamstring is doing well.
Blake has been hot of late, and he’s outplayed Kobe Bryant’s replacement at shooting guard, Jodie Meeks. In his last game against the Houston Rockets, Blake played in 48 minutes and had 24 points, seven rebounds, and seven assists. He nailed all eight of his free throw attempts and looked decent from beyond the arc, but his overall shooting percentage was an inefficient 30%. Still, he was dishing out dimes, even grabbing boards, and Blake looked great replacing Nash while he was out with the hammy.
It’s a really intriguing decision for the Lakers to make, and it will be interesting to see how they utilize Nash and Blake. Which point guard will be the ball-handler? Will they mix things up? Who is going to take the most shots? It sounds like they might shift Nash over to the two, but they could conceivably do anything. It sounds like the Lakers want to put out the best line-up available against the San Antonio Spurs, and maybe they get some strategic advantage out of it. I guess the Lakers feel like they have to think outside the box as a No. 7 seed, especially when the No. 2 seed they are facing is the Spurs.
By the way, just last week Blake put up 23 on 8-16 shooting against the Spurs, and he also added a cool five rebounds, four assists, and two steals with only the four turnovers being a blemish on his performance.