Pace and … Boards

On Thursday night in Portland, the Lakers were absolutely flying up and down the court, pushing what turned out to be 227 total possessions in L.A.’s 128-119 loss. Divide that number by two, and you get a pace of 113.5.

“I thought we really, we had a good thing going,” he said after the game. “We had 70 points in the paint, something like that, 39 fast break points around there.”

The actual number was 34, but it seemed like 39. To put it in perspective, the Warriors led the NBA last year with 18.8 fastbreak points per game, while the Lakers were second at 17.5.

For Lonzo Ball, it’s pretty simple.

“We are just faster than a lot of teams,” he said. “So when we get out, not that many teams can stay with us.”

But there’s a catch, or a lack thereof, in terms of rebounding the basketball. L.A. had a boards deficit of 54-46, including a 14-8 margin in Portland’s favor on the offensive glass, which produced a 21-10 differential in second chance points.

“We kept giving up more opportunities, that’s what I kept stressing to our guys,” Walton added. “We would get the stop, and then we’d start leaking out instead of coming in and rebounding, so we left some on the table.”

The boarding problems sometimes came from wings leaking out too early to get in transition, and sometimes from just failing to box out, as happened to Brandon Ingram – who did plenty of other things well – late in the first quarter.