Game 1 of the second round NBA Playoffs series between the Los Angeles Lakers and Dallas Mavericks was generally well-played, with the challengers come up with some clutch possessions on both ends to come away with a victory. If there's one vital player who stood out for the wrong reasons, it'd be Lakers small forward Ron Artest, who had a rough night from the floor.
Artest shot just 1-8, and 0-3 on three-pointers. He also had three turnovers, and was a general drain on the Lakers' efforts. Dexter Fishmore of Silver Screen And Roll notes that Artest's back-up Matt Barnes was bad, too, and that the Lakers' biggest issue was a reliance on the perimeter game.
The individual stats for a lot of these bros are terrible, but it all just hints at the real problem, which was an overreliance on the perimeter game. As a team the Lakers allowed themselves to play impatiently. Too many possessions ended with an ill-considered heave from behind the arc without the ball even finding its way to the low blocks.
Artest has had bad nights before, and has bounced back to help the Lakers win important games ... like Game 7 of the NBA Finals. But Ron-Ron's expressed frustration at his role in the offense before, and the more frustrated he gets, the worse it will be for Los Angeles. Monday's game won't help.
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