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Thursday, January 20, 2011
Yes, Virginia, they can score against a zone

By Brian Kamenetzky

One of the more common questions we get- particularly after losses- is whether or not the triangle can work against zone defenses. The answer is yes. It has, and will continue to, particularly if teams run with it for extended periods of time (look at the diminishing returns for the Suns last year with their zone during the Western Conference Finals).

Teams zone up the the Lakers in part because they believe L.A. will not have the discipline to find the seams and create the sorts of easy looks that can become available, particularly with a roster full of great passers. Instead, the goal, often successful, is to have them settle for jumpers.

For a good illustration of how the offense can succeed against a zone, check out this post by Sebastian Pruiti at NBAPlaybook.com, breaking down a successful first half moment from Wednesday night's loss in Dallas. Bottom line: Just as it is with the Sundance Kid, when faced with a zone, the Lakers are better when they move.

(H/T: TrueHoop)