Embroiled in their worst stretch of the season, the Los Angeles Lakers have fallen in four of their last five games, snapping the skid with a win over the Portland Trail Blazers on Friday night.
Prior to that they suffered one of their worst losses of the season, having no remedy to the Utah Jazz’s blistering barrage of 3-pointers, converting on 22-of-48 (45.8%) of their attempts.
On the other hand, Los Angeles’ offensive woes persisted. Despite Lakers head coach Frank Vogel switching up his starting lineup, the positive first quarter didn’t sustain. In stark contrast to Utah’s 3-point fusillade, the Lakers mustered an 8-for-33 (24.2%) clip from deep.
Overall on the recent four-game skid, L.A. shot just 44-of-152 (28.9%) from deep, and LeBron James realized that needed to improve. “We have to make shots from the perimeter,” he said. “It is that simple and we know that. We can’t put more pressure on ourselves.”
James, notwithstanding from some fantastic all-around performances, is not spared from the 3-point woes. He got back on track by going 2-for-5 from deep against Portland, but overall is just 7-of-34 (20.6%) behind the arc over the last five games.
“Me personally, I know I haven’t shot the ball as I did the first 20 games of the season, but I haven’t put more pressure on myself because I know I put the work in,” James said.
“I hope my teammates do the same. Don’t put too much added pressure on themselves. You put the work in, you live with the results. But we have to make some shots from the exterior. We’re really good in the paint.
“We do a good job of that, but we’re not making threes. We’re not getting to the free-throw line. It’s been very difficult on our team to score.”
LeBron frustrated by rest ‘narrative’
James’ workload has been augmented with Anthony Davis and Dennis Schroder both missing time, which ushered in some concerns about the 18-year veteran not getting enough rest.
He recently quelled those questions, saying he receives sufficient rest.
“I’m resting when I get in my car and head home, I’m resting when I get home, I’ll rest tomorrow,” James said. “I think this whole narrative of, ‘LeBron needs more rest,’ or I should take more rest or take time here, has become a lot bigger than what it actually really is.”
“I’ve never talked about it. I don’t talk about it. I don’t believe in it. We all need more rest.”
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