Lakers News: Anthony Davis Not Concerned About D’Angelo Russell Going Into Game 2 Against Nuggets
D'Angelo Russell, Lakers
Andrew Wevers-USA TODAY Sports

Going into this first round playoff series, many viewed point guard D’Angelo Russell as the X-factor for the Los Angeles Lakers. Regardless of how good Anthony Davis and LeBron James play, the Lakers need Russell to resemble the player he was for much of this regular season as opposed to the one who struggled mightily in last year’s Western Conference Finals against this same Denver Nuggets team.

Unfortunately, Game 1 was not Russell’s night as he shot 6-of-20 from the field and 1-of-9 from 3-point range as the Lakers fell by 11. Russell has been absolutely crucial to the Lakers’ success this season and he will need to get going if they want to have any chance of pulling the upset on the defending champion Nuggets.

But after a disappointing first game, Davis isn’t losing confidence in Russell and had a simple message for him.

“Just get ready for Game 2. We can’t do anything about this. But you can do something about Game 2,” Davis said after the loss. “We know what DLo brings to our team offensively. He can score and shoot the ball extremely well. Just got to do it. It’s not a regular season game where we have time. We’re down 0-1. So we have to, everybody, Rui has to shoot the ball more, he only had four shots, DLo I think has to be a little bit more aggressive.

“But we got to see the ball go in. I think that plays a factor. A lot of our guys are rhythm players so if you miss the first couple, the ball feels a little weird or it can be a mental thing, I’m not sure. I haven’t really talked to DLo yet. But it’s on him to just come in and we’re gonna continue to preach to continue to shoot the ball and play how he’s been playing to this point. I think he’s a player that never loses confidence in himself but I think when he sees a couple go in, he’ll be a different player.”

In last season’s Western Conference Finals, Russell averaged just 6.3 points while shooting 13.3% from deep. Darvin Ham would even bench Russell for the final game as he was borderline unplayable. But this year, Russell has been a completely different player for the Lakers and the team needs that version of him to be successful.

Davis and the rest of the team know this and have full belief in Russell to turn it around in Game 2. This first game was rough, but for someone like Russell all it takes is a couple shots to go in and there’s no looking back and the Lakers are hopeful Game 2 is a bounceback outing.

Lakers’ D’Angelo Russell excited about opportunity to bounce back in Game 2

While Anthony Davis hadn’t had the chance to talk with D’Angelo Russell at that point, the latter seemed to have the exact mindset the former was looking for. The point guard felt he had great looks for most of Game 1 and is excited about the chance to turn things around in Game 2.

“Great looks.” Russell said. “I can’t be mad. I don’t recall the last time I got 20 shots. So for me to get twenty good looks — not 20 ‘good,’ probably five or six of them were questionable. I know what I’m capable of. Honestly, I’m excited. I’m excited about that.”

Have you subscribed to our YouTube channel? It’s the best way to watch player interviews, exclusive coverage from events, participate in live shows, and more!

You May Also Like

Lakers News: Jordan Clarkson Ruled Out With Sprained Right Shoulder

The Los Angeles Lakers may have suffered another costly blow to their…

Lakers Snap Two-Game Losing Streak; Kobe Scores 30,000th Point

Last night, the Lakers seemed to be in total control of their…

Lakers News: Dwight Howard’s Father Discusses Recent Drama Between The Lakers and His Son

Just when we thought the drama surrounding Dwight Howard hit its climax…

Lakers Rumors: Organization Open To Discussing ‘Any Deal’ That Involves Bringing LeBron James Back

LeBron James gave everything he had in the decisive Game 5, but it wasn’t enough as he and the Los Angeles Lakers were sent home…