Originally written on Lakerholicz.com  |  Last updated 11/18/14
Mike D’Antoni is focussing on defense this year. Yes, that Mike D’Antoni – you know, the guy with the moustache and a love for scoring lots and lots of points. Whether it’s D’Antoni finally realizing that he needs to put in more work on the defensive end with his players, wanting to shut up the “haters” who so often call him “Antoni”, or if it’s just to replace the void left by Metta World Peace and Dwight Howard, the former Italian league star is preaching defense to his team, according to Dave McMenamin of ESPN Los Angeles: “It seems like he’s harping a little bit more on defense now,” Shawne Williams, who played for D’Antoni in New York, told ESPNLosAngeles.com. “He’s spending more time on defense. It used to just be a lot of offense and he used to try to tell us, ‘Defense comes from within,’ but now, everything starts with defense and then we let that dictate the offense.” “The way I’ve been seeing it, he’s been positive. He’s been kind of amped and hyped and he’s just been doing a lot of defense. That’s the most shocking thing about it. He’s doing a lot of defense. That’s good. That just shows me that he’s thinking ahead and working on everything.” Seven seconds or less? More like consecutive stops or else. “Defense has been and it will be a priority if we want to be competitive and win the majority of the games,” said Pau Gasol. “So, that has to be a focus for us. We can’t rely on our offense to bail us out and get us wins. Defense is what’s going to make us consistent and what’s going to make us beat good teams.” Pau Gasol was also keen to mention the impact of Kurt Rambis‘ return to the team, who was Phil Jackson‘s “defensive coach” at one point during the most recent championships years: “Kurt is doing a very good job,” said Gasol. “Kurt I think is a really good defensive coach and coach overall, so he’s going to help a lot on continuing to emphasize how important the defensive end is in order for any team to be successful.” The Lakers have a lot of guys who are known for their offense this year, but not so much for their defense. For that reason, it’s more important than ever for the coaches to be barking on and on about that side of the floor. Whether it’s D’Antoni, Rambis or even Mark Madsen, it doesn’t really matter; as long as defense is being made a priority then the team should see positive results by going forward with a defensive philosophy. .bottom-of-post-responsive { width: 300px; height: 250px; } @media(min-width: 500px) { .bottom-of-post-responsive { width: 300px; height: 250px; } } @media(min-width: 800px) { .bottom-of-post-responsive { width: 336px; height: 280px; } }
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