• Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

Bleacher Report ranks Anthony Davis at center a big disappointment

·2 min read
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

The 2021-22 NBA season is a few weeks in, but there are already trends on the way players and teams have been playing.

For the Los Angeles Lakers, life with a brand-new roster hasn’t been a seamless transition. The defense has been suboptimal, but the offensive chemistry that once looked iffy is gradually improving.

To delve further into the lineups, Anthony Davis at center was touted as a key to the way L.A. wanted to play this season. However, in Bleacher Report’s 10 biggest disappointments through the first few weeks of the season, Davis-at-center lineups made the list. Here’s why:

Others may prefer to focus on Russell Westbrook‘s awkward fit with the Los Angeles Lakers. That issue is too much of a given. The highs, lows and haplessly sideways journeys come as no surprise.

The performance of the Anthony Davis-at-the-5 arrangements are a different story.

Sticking AD in the middle is supposed to be the Lakers’ lineup du jour, the functional tweak that rains mismatches upon opponents and irons out the Westbrook wrinkles while surviving on defense. It hasn’t yet been that cheat code. The Lakers found success with AD manning the middle in Friday night’s victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers, but they’re losing the minutes with him at center for the season.

They needn’t worry about the offense during these stretches. It is the advertised amount of potent. But the defense is coughing up 117.6 points per 100 possessions, struggling on the glass, fouling a ton and allowing opponents to shoot better than 66 percent (subscription required) at the rim.

Like all trends early in the season, this may be temporary. The Lakers are awaiting the returns of Trevor Ariza, Talen Horton-Tucker and Kendrick Nunn that will alter Frank Vogel’s lineups and rotations, likely for the better.

Los Angeles changed the lineup against the Houston Rockets Sunday with Avery Bradley replacing DeAndre Jordan, and the spacing and defense looked more polished. That could be key for the squad moving forward since there’s plenty of depth to shuffle through.

List

18 Lakers selected to NBA 75th Anniversary Team