Los Angeles Lakers vs Brooklyn Nets: Which NBA Team is Better on Paper After All Trades?

Published 03/30/2021, 1:00 AM EDT
Feb 18, 2021; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (left) and Brooklyn Nets guard James Harden share a laugh before their game at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports


Last year, the only clash that everyone was waiting for was the one between the Clippers and the Lakers. However, this season, the potential final match-up between Brooklyn Nets and Lakers can provide 100 times the adrenaline rush.

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The recently closed NBA trade deadline was a deal maker for teams like the Nuggets and the Bulls. However, the way it shaped up for the already stocked Nets and the defending champions Lakers was beyond extraordinary. Now, these two teams are more or less sure of meeting in what might arguably be the ‘NBA Final of the decade.’

Are the Brooklyn Nets better on paper?

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The Nets are undoubtedly the better team on the basis of pure talent. They have six team members who combine for a whopping 41 NBA All-Star appearances. Plus, they house two former NBA Champions who share a great camaraderie in their starting five.

James Harden has been a three-time leading league scorer during his years with the Rockets. The Nets are a dream team who can run some of the best offenses in the game today.

Nets’ Blake Griffin and James Harden talk during a break in the game against the Blazers at Moda Center. Mandatory Credit: Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports

From the looks of it, given the players stay healthy for the playoffs, one can call them invincible, just like the Warriors team of 2017.

Matt Barnes, one of the GSW members from the same 2017 team, said in an interview, “We’ve probably never seen a team with these many individual accolades… But to me, incorporating one piece is a lot easier than incorporating a handful of pieces which Brooklyn is having to do.”

Barnes was pointing out the chemistry issues that will be a mega challenge for coach Steve Nash to take care of. With KD out, both Kyrie Irving and James Harden have benefitted and developed a good understanding. But with so many pieces added to an equation that Kevin Durant will soon join, the distribution can be a tough ask.

How do the Los Angeles Lakers look on the same paper?

The LA-based franchise now has a rebounding sensation in Andre Drummond. He can soon become LeBron James’ go-to guy when it comes to trusting someone inside the paint. As Matt Barnes further added, “With Drummond, and AD, and LeBron, that’s gonna be a hell of a defensive frontline come playoff time.”

The Lakers are not a shooting-heavy team. In fact, even with Danny Green on their side last year, they just didn’t seem to complement shooting as much as their counterparts. 

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However, they are a team full of big men who can defend voraciously and rule the rim with explosiveness. Kyle Kuzma is also shaping out to be a double-double scoring hand that can come off the bench to help Montrezl Harrell and Horton-Tucker with some efficient rotation.

Marc Gasol might not be much of an athletic center, but he can make plays and help the scorers. The Lakers would not want the Nets to collect too many offensive rebounds either because that will mean Joe Harris or The Beard hitting a three. 

On a positive note, the Lakers are dominant because of their culture and the unity that they project. If they have a healthy roster, they can give the Nets some tough nights.

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Read also – Steve Nash Explains How Brooklyn Nets Plan to Get Kevin Durant Ready For Playoffs

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Sourabh Singh

1151 articles

Sourabh Singh is an NBA sports analyst for EssentiallySports, who has been working with the site since May 2020. Prior to this, he functioned as Managing Editor at WittyFeed, followed by a stint at Decathlon. The Sports Management graduate leads an active lifestyle, veering to the mountains for off-trail adventures.

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