Los Angeles Lakers badly need Danny Green to find his rhythm again

The Los Angeles Lakers could use the real Danny Green again soon.

Despite the Los Angeles Lakers‘ offensive struggles as a team, anytime Danny Green‘s name has started trending during the NBA restart, it’s usually been for one specific reason: Lakers Twitter was clowning him for yet another awful performance.

By halftime of L.A.’s game against the Denver Nuggets on Monday, that was already the case again. In 13 minutes of action with the starters, Green had put up zero points on 0-of-5 shooting from the field and 0-of-2 shooting from 3-point range. In fact, the only counting stat he had amassed was one assist.

This has been nothing new in the bubble, unfortunately.

Through the Lakers’ first six seeding games (Green only suited up for five of them), the two-time NBA champion averaged only 6.6 points in 22.8 minutes per game, shooting 40 percent from the field and a dismal 4-for-20 (20 percent) from 3-point range.

In fact, over one stretch, he missed 13 straight 3-pointers in the bubble, all but shattering any remaining faith the Lakers fanbase had in him. It feels a bit over-reactionary to completely abandon ship on a career 40.1 percent 3-point sniper of Green’s caliber, but the 33-year-old wing has seen a steady decline in his production all season.

The Los Angeles Lakers need the real Danny Green back ASAP

After he shot a blistering 45.5 percent from deep on 5.4 attempts per game last season for the eventual NBA champion Toronto Raptors, Green made just 36.9 percent of his 4.9 long-range attempts per game this season in Los Angeles.

Though he came out and made his first long-range attempt of the second half on Monday night, Green’s performance in the Orlando bubble has been jarring. With Avery Bradley not participating in the league restart and Rajon Rondo still working his way back, the Lakers need Green to spread the floor and help hold things down on the perimeter as the rangy, 3-and-D wing he’s been for most of his underrated career.

To this point, however, the Lakers have posted a dismal minus-19.0 Net Rating with Danny Green on the court, which is worse than every other rotation player except JaVale McGee (minus-19.2). The team’s dreadful offensive rating with Green on the court (89.2) jumps by more than 13 points per 100 possessions whenever he sits (102.6).

That cannot be the case come playoff time.

LeBron James, Anthony Davis and the rest of this disappointing offense have been problematic too, but without Green being a threat to help spread the floor, the spacing out there is going to get even more cramped. He’s getting open looks; he’s just missing most of them.

If the Lakers hope to shake off the rust from what’s been the worst offense in the NBA bubble thus far, and if they hope to contend with high-powered offenses like those of the Houston Rockets, LA Clippers and Milwaukee Bucks later on, they’ll need one of their better two-way players to, you know, start playing better on both ends of the court.

Next: Damian Lillard put Skip Bayless in a body bag

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