The Los Angeles Lakers finally got back in the win column on Friday night, beating the Toronto Raptors in overtime to snap an 11-game road losing streak.
While the win doesn’t fix everything in Lakerland, it is a nice start and perhaps something the team can build off of moving forward, which Avery Bradley alluded to postgame.
“It’s a great feeling,” Bradley said. “I think we just broke an 11-game losing streak on the road, so it was a great accomplishment tonight to go out there and be able to play the right way on both ends of the floor. It was really refreshing, man. A great win, on to the next one.”
It was actually Bradley that came up with some clutch plays down the stretch for the Lakers, drilling a clutch three in overtime to give them the lead in the final minute and then knocking in a pair of free throws to seal it.
He discussed what he saw during that time, crediting his teammates for getting him open looks.
“Just trying to be aggressive. Kudos to LeBron [James] and Russ. They were making plays down the stretch to get us the ball and they just made a great play and I was able to knock down the shot.”
A big theme for the Lakers in recent losses has been lack of energy early, leading to big deficits to climb out of. The Lakers came out with energy from the jump against the Raptors though, which Bradley feels was a big factor in the win.
“I think just staying together. Sticking with our game plan. Playing hard on the defensive end. That’s what got our offense going. Whenever we’ve got that mindset, whenever we can stay together and play hard the entire game, I feel like we have a chance every single night. We haven’t been doing that. Tonight it was refreshing to finally see us put together a full game of that.”
As Bradley concluded, everything comes down to effort with this Lakers team.
“I think it’s simple,” he said. “It’s just effort. We played harder. We wanted it more. We played for each other. Every single possession, it was like every guy was down and guarding their guy.
“Whenever a team can play that way for an entire game, it’s going to be hard for the other team to score.”
Bradley believes James is greatest ever
LeBron James poured in 36 more points against the Raptors and is now just 20 points shy of passing Karl Malone for second on the NBA’s all-time scoring list.
Bradley has played with and against James for years now, and he gave high praise to his teammate.
“It’s amazing as everyone’s been able to see. From even the start of his career and me being a fan. A kid in high school to playing against him and now having an opportunity to play on his team. It’s just incredible to now be a part of,” Bradley said.
“He’s a special player, man. To me, greatest ever.”
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