Although the Los Angeles Lakers managed to retrofit the roster with pieces that made fit LeBron James and Anthony Davis better, the biggest challenge then turned into integrating them as quickly as possible.
However, it seems like the Lakers have found a way to figure things out on the fly as they are 4-1 since the deadline. Their most impressive victory since then came against the Dallas Mavericks when they erased a 27-point deficit to steal a win on the road.
That type of comeback doesn’t happen unless a team has good chemistry and Jarred Vanderbilt believes that Los Angeles is making steady progress in that regard, via Spectrum SportsNet:
“I think each and every game we’ve gotten better, we’ve got more chemistry so just trying to keep building in that right direction as we keep progressing. I can see the chemistry getting there each and every game. We need every game right now, so just continue to fight and play in every game like we need it and I think we did that tonight.”
Prior to the trade deadline, the Lakers’ margin for error to win games was close to zero but now it feels like they’ve got more room to make mistakes. Vanderbilt discussed the development and attributes it to the collective depth and talent on the roster:
“I just think we’re a deep team. I think we can win in a variety of ways. Like tonight, we didn’t make no shots but I feel like we was good on the glass, in transition, and we got a lot of different guys that can play a lot of different ways and impact the game a lot of different ways. So I think tonight even though the shots weren’t falling we didn’t get discouraged. We kept playing, we kept fighting and like I said I think we killed them on the glass and in transition.”
LeBron James and Anthony Davis used to always be counted on to spark runs, but L.A. now has a player in Vanderbilt who can impact the game in his own way. The young forward scored 15 points but more impressively had 17 boards with eight of them coming on the offensive end. Vanderbilt was the catalyst behind the victory and even drew praise from Jason Kidd who said he kicked the Mavericks’ ass.
The new-look Lakers are making a serious run at a playoff spot, and it’ll be interesting to see if they can continue to win in multiple ways down the stretch.
LeBron James could miss extended time due to foot injury
The depth on the roster is going to seriously be tested as James will miss the game against the Memphis Grizzlies. However, the King’s absence could extend past the Grizzlies game as there’s reportedly fear he could miss extended time due to the right foot injury he suffered against the Mavericks.
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