What a change of fortune for the Los Angeles Lakers and the Golden State Warriors. The Lakers are looking like one of the more dominant teams in the NBA. The Warriors are looking like they may end up in the draft lottery. It’s a stark contrast from just a season ago. It looked like the Warriors were on their way to their fourth championship in five years and Stephen Curry would get a Finals MVP (neither of these things happened), while the Lakers stumbled out of postseason contention as trade rumors swirled.
The Lakers are fresh off a victory against the Phoenix Suns to improve to an 8-2 record. Their Northern California counterparts have two wins.
All-time, the purple and gold have 252 wins in this matchup compared to the Warriors’ 168. However, in the past four seasons, the Lakers have won just three times (including this gem of a game).
How do these teams match up?
Funny enough, the Lakers are the exact same in offensive rating (107.2) with the Warriors. Defensively, you can see quite a large drop-off. Along the way, the Warriors are ranked last in that regard (116.8) while LA is ranked second (99.8).
The Warriors are just slightly better from three-point range (33.4%) than the Lakers and only have 27.8% of their points come from there. However, there is some discrepancy between their offenses. Overall the Lakers are shooting 47.2% from the field while the Warriors are shooting 43.8%.
Golden State will be led by former Laker D’Angelo Russell who leads the Warriors in points per game with 26.3. He is followed by Eric Paschall, the rookie who has 15.6 points per game. If you’re not familiar with Paschall, you may not be familiar with other names on the roster. Draymond Green and Willie Cauley-Stein are recognizable names. Others may be unrecognizable to the casual NBA fan.
The Lakers had a lot of turnover during the offseason, many can say for the better. Adding Anthony Davis is working out so far, as he’s leading the team in points, rebounds, and blocks.
This contrasts with the Warriors who saw Kevin Durant, Shaun Livingston, and Andre Iguodala depart. The already shallow team is relying on their bench after Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson became unavailable due to injury.
The Warriors will be fine with everyone healthy next year.
But for now? This can be another team that LeBron James is looking for revenge against.
The Lakers and the Warriors will be playing at 7:00 PM at Staples Center. Be sure to follow Lakers Outsiders on twitter for more.