LeBron James & Anthony Davis Discuss Lakers Overcoming 0.3% Odds Of Making 2023 NBA Playoffs
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

When the Los Angeles Lakers started the 2022-23 season 2-10, panic immediately flooded the fanbase as there didn’t seem to be a path toward contention.

However, the Lakers turned things around largely in part to their trade deadline deals that balanced the roster and gave LeBron James and Anthony Davis more pieces to work with. James and Davis were able to carry that momentum into the Play-In Tournament where they beat the Minnesota Timberwolves and earned a postseason berth.

The Lakers analytics department told the team they had about a 0.3% chance of making the playoffs, but that didn’t deter James, who just needed a chance to get there.

“When we were 2-10, the analytics guys said we had a 0.3 (%) chance of making the postseason,” James said. “So, all you ask for is a chance I guess. So for us to turn around our season and give ourselves an opportunity to compete for the Larry O’Brien Trophy, that’s all you can ask for.”

Davis also reflected on the team’s slim chances but emphasized that Los Angeles can’t stop at just making the postseason. “We talked about it Sunday just how crazy it is to start to 2-10, and we’re fighting for a playoff spot. … We definitely feel like we deserve it. We’re supposed to be here. We’ve worked too hard, and you know put into work to get in this position.

“But yeah, I mean, that’s what we started 2-10, and the analytic guys in the media, upstairs in our front office everything saying that we had 0.3% chance of getting into the playoffs and obviously we defeated those odds, but we don’t want to stop here just getting in. Obviously, you got small victories. Seeing where we started but now we want to get greedy and make some noise in the playoffs.”

The Lakers aren’t the typical No. 7 seed as their record after the trade deadline was one of the best in the league. In fact, L.A. is the current favorite to win the series against the Memphis Grizzlies despite them being the No. 2 seed.

The purple and gold got what they wanted, but now have to go and prove that they’re worthy of being taken seriously as a contender.

Darvin Ham says LeBron James played like champion in Play-In Tournament

Getting to the playoffs took a herculean effort from James who led the team in scoring. Darvin Ham had high praise for his superstar, saying he played like a champion against the Timberwolves.

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