LeBron is Pretty Good
LeBron James normally shoots pretty well from the floor. His effective field goal percentage for the year is 59.8 percent. This number is absurd for a player who is as important to the offense as LeBron is, and has not been done with someone with this high a usage rate since Shaq. In Miami’s last game against the Clippers, however, LeBron did something special even by his standards. His effective field goal percentage from the floor was 100 percent.
Of course, unlike Shaq, LeBron is not so bad at free throws that fouling him is a strategy. True shooting percentage takes into account not only the increased value of a three point shot, but also the worth of free throws. In this metric, Lebron’s mark of 63.0 percent is higher than any player of his usage percentage since box scores started having enough detail to calculate usage percentage. It is this strength in addition to his scoring from the floor that allowed him to score 30 points on just 11 shots against the Clippers.
Today’s game against the Lakers is a chance for the already great Miami offense to run wild against a mediocre Lakers defense. Miami will look to take advantage of a few things in particular to help them get the win.
Transition – Per Synergy Sports, the Lakers are below average in transition defense on a per play basis, giving up a 18th ranked 1.14 points per play. Miami’s offense, as should be expected, is among the league leaders in transition efficiency with a third-ranked 1.22 points per play. Miami will look to get out and run on the Lakers.
Isolation – Another of the Lakers’ biggest weaknesses is isolation plays. Again, per Synergy Sports, they are giving up a 23rd ranked 0.85 points per play. Miami has among the best offensive players in the league in Lebron James who scores a fifth-ranked 1.02 points per play on isolations. As a whole, Miami’s offense scores a league best 0.9 points per play on these plays. While ball movement can certainly help the Miami offense, at the end of the day the Heat should have no problem breaking down these L.A. defenders on an individual basis.