Although it is still only the 2019 NBA preseason, the Los Angeles Lakers managed to make quite a statement against the new-look Golden State Warriors with a 123-101 victory.
The Lakers granted fans their first opportunity to witness the pairing of LeBron James and Anthony Davis in action. Meanwhile, the Warriors also obliged by trotting out their trio of All-Star players in Stephen Curry, Draymond Green, and D’Angelo Russell.
Los Angeles wasted no time in taking an early lead against Golden State and never looked back even when both teams sidelined their key players in the second half. It seems getting off to a hot start was part of the game plan.
Davis emphasized the importance of establishing a foundation for themselves to build on heading into the 2019-20 NBA season, via Lakers:
“We want to set a tone for ourselves coming out, playing great defensively, moving the ball offensively and getting great shots. Even though these preseason games, the minutes are not going to be the same as the regular season, but we want to come out and portray the type of team that we’re going to be in the amount of minutes that we have.”
Davis added that he is looking to make the most out of his limited preseason minutes moving forward:
“Any time you get on the floor for these next five games of the preseason, we want to make sure that we come out and do the things that we need to do to help us.”
There is certainly plenty of truth to Davis’ comments given the expectations the Lakers have ushered in this season. Although they will be expected to compete for a championship, they will have limited time to get on the same page before the regular season begins.
Los Angeles will undoubtedly continue to endure their growing pains to start the season, but the onus will be on Davis, LeBron James, and the coaching staff to keep this team afloat while they develop their chemistry on the floor. Fortunately, it is clear that they are hoping to work out as much of those problems as they can over these next games.
Regardless, the main goal of the preseason is to make it through 100% healthy and in shape for the grind of an 82-game season, including 2020 NBA playoffs.
As important as it is for all the team’s new faces to get acclimated with each other, it pales in comparison to keeping their key pieces as healthy as possible.