Welcome to The Lab, FiveThirtyEight’s basketball podcast. On this week’s show (Jan. 11, 2018), LaVar Ball has been making headlines for calling out Lakers head coach Luke Walton, saying the players “don’t want to play for him.” Neil, Chris and Kyle break down the stats to see if these claims hold any merit. Next, the Minnesota Timberwolves are having an impressive season, perhaps even impressive enough to contend for the Western Conference championship. Who’s responsible for their season’s turnaround? We investigate. Plus, a small-sample-size segment on Steph Curry’s incredible numbers of late.
Here are links to what was discussed this week:
- Keep an eye on our 2017-18 NBA predictions, updated after every game.
- Lonzo Ball and Luke Walton responded to LaVar’s comments.
- The Ringer took a look at the Timberwolves and Jimmy Butler’s rise.
- Wednesday night, Steph Curry was out again with an ankle injury.