Lakers News: D’Angelo Russell ‘Excited’ For Opportunity To Bounce Back In Game 2 Against Nuggets
D'Angelo Russell, Lakers, Nuggets
Andrew Wevers-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers got the rematch they wanted as they took on the Denver Nuggets in Game 1 of the first round of the 2024 NBA Playoffs.

Los Angeles needed to get through a tough Play-In Tournament game against the New Orleans Pelicans to make the postseason, but after winning it seemed like they were ready to answer all the doubters who believed they stood no chance against Denver. In the first half, the Lakers were well on their way to doing that as they built up a double-digit lead before letting it slip away in the second half.

D’Angelo Russell deserves a large amount of blame for the team’s second-half meltdown as he was cold from the field. Russell finished the night 13 points on 6-of-20 shooting including an abysmal 1-of-9 from the 3-point line.

Despite the poor shooting night, Russell didn’t complain about his looks and expressed how much he’s looking forward to his chance to bounce back 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.”

The point guard added that he was following the game plan but that his shots simply didn’t fall this time around. “Sometimes the ball just don’t fall. I was locked in on the details and the little things just to try to stay on the floor defensively and things like that. And you look up, your shots aren’t falling. So, no love lost. Can’t be upset about that one. Be ready for the next one.”

Russell has been downplaying his role and what this series means to him, even going as far as to say he didn’t change his approach. However, something clearly needs to change because Los Angeles can’t afford to have him be so ineffective offensively.

If Russell continues to wither in the moment, head coach Darvin Ham might have no choice but to turn to the likes of Gabe Vincent or Spencer Dinwiddie.

Lakers continue to have interest in Trae Young

D’Angelo Russell’s Game 1 performance might force the front office to reconsider their options at the guard position once the offseason begins. One name that continues to be linked to the Lakers is Trae Young and the team is reportedly still registering trade interest in him.

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