Finals Preview Supplementary Materials

Hello! My pre-series preview of the Lakers-Heat finals can be found on the most recent Lakers Exceptionalism Podcast. Here I’ll post some of the diagrams referenced in that pod for anyone wanting to help illustrate the concepts discussed on the pod.

Bam’s Playmaking

Here’s a look at Bam Adebayo’s Playmaking data from his Player Profile at our site. He’s overall very good, and elite among Bigs, but his D+ Passing Versatility and C Passing Creation Quality hint at what his film confirms: many of these looks are from simple passes and handoffs. He likely won’t burn LA in the short roll or in more complex playmaking situations.

Miami’s Team Talent

Here are a few photos that showcase some of our Player Profile metrics for Miami rotation players in key areas that were discussed on the podcast.

Protecting the Rim:


Diagrams on Zone Attacks

With a big lineup:

With AD playing PF, you want to use your lob threats in McGee and Howard to either occupy Bam or burn him if he helps off of them. We can simply just post AD up on whichever of the back line wing defenders is the weaker post defender and let him attack. The same can be done for LeBron if we want to post him up.

If Miami tries to front that and has Bam on the back end to pick off a lob, lifting McGee/Dwight (5) to the high post to get the ball and then get it to AD is the simplest way to proceed.


Playing AD at at the 5: 

With AD playing center, you just want to take advantage of normal 2-3 zone rotations to manufacture the right mismatch. Aligning 2-3 with your offense means we know who on defense will take whom on offense. Getting the ball to LeBron in the high post (he’ll be 1 for this play) and then having AD get to the post against whichever wing is the weaker post defender gives us that mismatch. If Bam doubles, LeBron is right there. If Miami doubles off the shooter right in front of AD, that’s a 3.

And what I’d want to do, which I didn’t show here, is have LeBron start at the block and then flash to the high post. Starting at the high post increases the likelihood that the top two defenders in the zone or Bam would be able to disrupt that pass.

What LA can also do against a 2-3 zone is have one big, whether it be AD, McGee, or Howard, seal the middle guy while they run a P&R with their other big towards the middle, getting the other top guy in the zone to step over and create a driving lane.

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