LeBron James put up another 30-point performance for the Los Angeles Lakers, but it again wasn’t enough to secure a win in the clash against the Memphis Grizzlies.
James scored at least 30 points in 18 games over the first half of the 2021-22 campaign. L.A. lost nine of those games, proving that even a Herculean effort from the four-time NBA champion often can’t make up for the team’s deficiencies.
But James still thinks the recent four-game winning streak shows an improvement in the Lakers’ play as compared to the first months of the season.
“I think as of late, before tonight, we’ve played some really good basketball,” James said when asked to assess the first half of the season after the 127-119 loss to the Grizzlies.
“We want to continue to trend over the next 42. Like I said, the best thing about our ballclub right now is that we’re getting healthy. We’re logging minutes, we’re getting some good chemistry and obviously, we played a great team tonight.
“I feel like that’s a really well-coached team, they have a lot of good firepower on that team and they’ve been playing well throughout the whole season. But I feel like if we continue to do what we’ve been doing over the last couple of weeks, probably the last month, then we’ll play much better in the second half than we did in the first.”
James says L.A. now has a better idea of its team identity. However, he insists the Lakers need to wait for Anthony Davis and Kendrick Nunn’s return before they can fully assess the team’s potential.
“Well obviously it’s been a lot clearer of how we want to play the game of basketball over the last few weeks,” James said.
“Like I said, we’ve been getting our guys back and knowing how we want to execute, how we want to defend and how we want to attack, what’s our attack methods both offensively and defensively.”
And he added: “I feel like I have enough in the sense of who we have now. But I don’t have enough sense of who we still don’t have and we still don’t have our gun and that’s AD and how that changes our dynamic. Obviously, it improves our team right away, but how it changes our dynamic, also K. Nunn when he comes in and fits in.
“So we will see how we come together, as fast as we can come together once AD is back because he’s just such a big piece to our puzzle and we can’t ever say this is who we are until we get him.”
Lakers believed to show interest in Pistons’ Jerami Grant and Pacers’ Myles Turner
As the Lakers keep figuring out ways to maximize their roster’s potential, reports claim the franchise’s front office is already thinking about potential moves that could strengthen the team in the second part of the season.
L.A. is believed to be pursuing highly-coveted Detroit Pistons forward Jerami Grant alongside the Washington Wizards, New York Knicks, and Portland Trail Blazers.
The Lakers are also said to have shown interest in the Indiana Pacers’ Myles Turner.
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