So this is what it feels like to have a legitimate point guard? I almost forgot.
Not to diminish all that Derek Fisher has given us over the years. He'll always be remembered for his championship savvy, clutch shooting, and leadership. He gave us some great moments and he'll always have a place in our hearts, and if the Lakers didn't have such a great tradition of only retiring the numbers of the greatest of the greats, I'd like to think Fish's #2 would have been an easy pick to hang in the rafters of Staples Center as a strong reminder of all his accomplishments with the Purp and Gold. Today, all I can think about is how glad we are that he's gone.
Sorry if I seem to be disrespecting Fish here, but Ramon Sessions gives the Lakers another dimension that Derek Fisher and Steve Blake couldn't dream of doing. The speed, change of pace hesitation dribbles, lay-ups in traffic, transition points, and pick-and-rolls are all aspects of the game the Lakers haven't had a point guard be able to do well since.....I don't even know when. Nicky V maybe? With a real point guard, the Lakers' offense has looked as good as it has all season.
Per SI's Zach Lowe (h/t to Land O' Lakers):
"In the 100 minutes Sessions has played, the Lakers have scored 114 points per 100 possessions, a mark that would lead the league by a mile, according to NBA.com's stats tool. The Lakers have been more efficient in just about every way possible during those 100 minutes..."
Five games. That's all it took for the Lakers to look like the great offensive team they once were. Five games, one started. Of course, on Twitter, there were some Debbie Downers who felt the need to point out that once the hype has faded, we'll all realize how limited Sessions is. Let their words fall on deaf ears. Like it even matters what his flaws are in comparison (unless it's clutch, something Fish never lost). Nothing could be worse than what the Lakers were getting from their point guard, and for Sessions to make this strong of an impact in this short time period just underscores that fact. With Kobe Bryant, Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol on the floor, Sessions is going to continue to have plenty of easy opportunities. So far, he's running away with them. Last night alone, he posted 20, 11, and 6. Go ahead and look up the last time a Lakers' PG put up a line like that.
*Update: C.A. did...
"... it's been nearly 15 years since a Laker guard not named Kobe Bryant put up 20 points, 11 assists and 6 boards in a single contest (Nick Van Exel pulled it off twice in 1997, and some dude named Earvin Johnson did it in 1996)."
In only one week and five games, Ramon Sessions has done what El Presidente and Bearded Caillou were only able to do a combined two times in the past two seasons. No, I don't mean run a fast break, or run a pick and roll, or make a post entry pass (although I'm guessing the number would be the same; for real, I can't understand why Steve Blake insists on turning the ball over on what should be a pretty routine pass for any NBA player, never mind a point guard). In only his first full week, Ramon Sessions has won our Lakers' Player of the Week, just as many as Derek and Steve. Damn right, he's fast.
BTW, Matt Barnes...I see you. Keep it up, and you'll win another one. Also, did you see Fish is wearing his age in OKC?
Here are Ramon's stats:
In four games this week Sessions averaged 15.25 points, 7.5 assists, 3.75 rebounds, 0.75 steals, and 1.75 turnovers per game in 29.25 minutes per game. He shot 58.8% from the field, 62.5% from 3-PT, and 80% FT.
Highlights after the Jump...
3/18 vs. Utah Jazz
3/20 @ Houston Rockets
3/21 @ Dallas Mavericks
3/23 vs. Portland Trail Blazers