I probably don’t need to tell you this, but I’m going to anyway: the Los Angeles Lakers are torching the NBA right now. They’re currently 12-1, they rank 3rd in the league in offensive efficiency with an ORtg of 111.4, and they have the NBA’s best defense (96.5 DRtg) — better even than the Boston Celtics, whose stifling D was one of the major reasons the Lakers lost in the NBA Finals this past June. With Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum in the fold full-time this season, we knew they’d be a formidable team, but I think it’s safe to say they’ve exceeded even their most optimistic expectations going into the season.

Exactly how good have the Lakers been so far? Well, here at, one of our favorite tools for measuring team quality is something we call the “Simple Rating System“. It’s basically a team’s average point differential per game, but also adjusted for strength of schedule, and we’ve already proven that it’s one of the best predictors of future performance available. Through 13 games, the Lakers’ SRS is an eye-popping 14.00, easily tops in the league (Cleveland is 2nd with 9.64).

Just for comparison’s sake, last year’s Celtics, who streamrolled the league en route to 66 wins and an NBA title, had an SRS of “only” 9.31. In fact, the best full-season SRS mark ever belongs to the 1970-71 Milwaukee Bucks, who also rolled up 66 wins and an NBA crown, thanks to the efforts of Oscar Robertson and league MVP Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Their SRS score that year? 11.91, more than two points per game worse than L.A.’s current clip.

Here’s the list of the NBA’s all-time best teams by SRS:

Continue reading ‘The Lakers and Hot November Starts’

  • imfasterthanur

    For the first time in my life, I actually appreciate statistical analysis and correlation mumbo jumbo. It’s kind of weird…

    Go Lakers! haha

  • duke

    I don’t care about stats, I care about a championship….and to that end what would give me ultimate joy is watching the Lakers destroy Boston. Its payback time.

  • Dave

    REVENGE SCENARIO, Lakes vs. Celtics : the entire Laker team falls down (all 12 plus several coaches) clutching their knees and (all 12 plus coaches) have to be carried to the locker room. A few minutes later, they come back to the court dancing, prancing, and blowing kisses. Is it a miracle or they were previously faking — golly, who knows? Then, two minutes before the game is over, every Laker player dumps a large jug of Gatorade on Paul Pierce’s head and the referees are forced to stop the game while the floor is mopped up. No one will call a foul because Paul Pierce is crying and emotional. Lakers WIN!


    95-96 chicago bulls team……. please 08-09 LOS ANGELES LAKERS team.

    Oh and hey totally off subject but does anyone know why john sally is leaving the best damn sports show period???????

  • MILO

    what is up with Kobe’s shooting???

  • nabil

    great read, thanks. :)

    kobe is the LAST guy who we need to worry about. he knows how to straighten out his game.

  • mihaithemiraculous

    [Comment ID #55592 Will Be Quoted Here]

    I see what you’re seeing, and heres what scares me, last year people were saying “whats up with mcgrady’s shooting?” and how hes done, his knees are shot hes sitting out games and the t-mac i used to love to watch with his crazy pull up J and drives to the rac is gone.. drawing a comparison to kobe, kobe has his pull up J failing him, which means he’s not gona get to the rim anymore because people dont respect his shot, over the last 2 games he had 4 and 2 free throws a game, in the last few years he was at the line 10 times a night.. now kobe is averaging 23 points a game which is the lowest sinces he averaged 22 so many years ago… I love watching the lakers play and the amazing plays that kobe creates when hes playing well, hopefully this is just a slow start and not the begining of the end for the most exciting player in the game…. one more thing: Odom for vince carter, get that done!

  • e

    nothing is wrong with kobe’s shooting..he’ll get it back together..i honestly think when he’ll start playing more minutes again, he’ll get his game flow back

  • http://deleted MILO

    [Comment ID #55604 Will Be Quoted Here]

    well i gues you have not been watching for the last season or so! Kobes shooting has been bad for quite some time now! all i can wonder is where is the Kobe that 2 seasons ago was draining 3’s in two or three defenders? like this