The Los Angeles Lakers looked like they were beginning to turn the corner but got hit with a reality check on Thursday night as they were blown out by the Phoenix Suns. With both LeBron James and Anthony Davis struggling, it was actually D’Angelo Russell who led the team in scoring with 19 points to go along with six assists.
The same issues that have hampered the Lakers all year long popped up again as they committed 18 turnovers, allowed 13 Phoenix offensive rebounds, and let an opposing player get scorching hot from 3-point range.
After the game, Russell admitted he isn’t sure exactly what the issues are for the Lakers but thinks the team needs remain positive throughout it.
“I don’t know. There’s a lot we could talk about right now as far as what could we fix,” Russell said. “I don’t know, short-term, figure out and try to be better next game. I don’t know. I think it’s just a lot of holes in our system right now. And you use the regular season to figure those things out. But the ups and downs, the digression, the setbacks, all these things, injuries, just keep playing a part in our success.
“So, just the next-guy mentality. I think having a positive energy coming into work, practice and things like that, and get better from game to game. I think that’s where we start. We look at this game and get better in ways that we haven’t had to look at throughout the season. Right now it’s time to figure it out and do something about it. Whatever that may be.”
There are a lot of issues with the Lakers right now and, as Russell noted, every player has to figure out where they can be better individually, and then come together as a team. But with so many injuries and lineup changes throughout the year, Russell feels the Lakers are still in the process of figuring things out.
“There’s so many different challenges that we got to try to bottle them up and limit as many as we can just to try to scrape out some wins,” Russell added. “I think we’re a team still figuring things out. We’re still mixing and matching lineups. Finishing group, starting group, we’re still figuring it out. So I wouldn’t say panic or anything like that.
“I’m sure last year, the prime example of this team not being where they wanted to be and we had some new energy, new vibes and they kind of got us to where we ended off last year. So I think you can still see light at the end of the tunnel, but we just got to get better. Gotta keep getting better.”
The Lakers are at a low point this season and have been unable to find the answers to fully turn things around. The franchise at all levels must figure out something to get this team back on track as this season is on the verge of being a lost one.
Lakers guard D’Angelo Russell not worried about name being in trade rumors
Of course one big change the Lakers can make is by making a move at the trade deadline and Russell’s name is always being mentioned. But as a veteran of this league, that doesn’t bother the point guard.
“No, I mean, it is what it is,” Russell added. “Since I’ve been in the league, I’ve kind of been dealing with that to where I know I can’t control it. I know those things happen, no matter how well you play, how professional you act, how many shots you make or miss, this is gonna happen regardless. So I don’t really go about my days worrying about that, to be honest.”
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