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Lakers’ critical roster move to help Lebron James, per Rob Pelinka

Lakers LeBron James Anthony Davis Rob Pelinka

LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers definitely had injuries at the top of their list of issues. But that wasn’t their only flaw throughout their roller-coaster ride of a season.

The Lakers were the No. 1 defensive team in the NBA by defensive rating. But they were far from a free-flowing offense like what we’re seeing from the title-favorite Brooklyn Nets thus far in the postseason. LA was a gruesome 24th in offensive rating, which was obviously impacted by long-term injuries to both James and Anthony Davis, but also a product of a huge hole on their squad: long-range shooting.

LA ranked in the bottom third of the NBA in 3-point percentage. They shot 35.4% as a team, good for 21st in the league, while also finishing as the 25th-rated team at 3-pointers made per game. This reared its ugly head in the playoffs, where the Lakers were a miserable 29.9% from downtown through six games. Shooting below 30% in a pretty decent sample size is just downright dreadful.

Lakers GM Rob Pelinka spoke out about the roster plans in the offseason, particularly to address their dearth of shooting.

Via Lakers Nation:

“You can never have enough shooting so it’s something that’s always at the top of our mind when we’re building and constructing a roster. I think it’s important too, part of successful shooting is having special players that create the shooting space and for us, that comes primarily from LeBron and Anthony.

But the Lakers GM emphasized that aside from any roster moves, it’s still the health of their two stars that takes top priority, as it should:

“But I will say, one of our top priorities this summer has to be, I view the role of any organization, front office, coaching staff, is to be a role of support and we have to pour all we can resource-wise into helping LeBron finalize getting through the end of his high ankle sprain and then Anthony Davis, of course, the injuries he faced.

Although Pelinka is right in saying the spacing is indeed created by stars like James and Davis, it’s a two-way street. The Lakers need reliable floor spacers to actually knock down any open looks. Hopefully, the offseason provides the Purple and Gold with some snipers to flank their stars, once healthy.