The Los Angeles Lakers enjoyed some much-needed time off over the last week, allowing the team to put in the extra work in practice.
L.A. has only played two games since last Wednesday, losing to the Portland Trail Blazers and Golden State Warriors. The Lakers have won only two of their last nine matchups, falling to 26-31 — their worst record of the season.
LeBron James came out satisfied with the Lakers’ latest effort in training as they had two practices in a row this week for the first time all season. The 37-year-old All-Star hopes it will allow the Purple and Gold to improve their performance in the games to come.
“Obviously we don’t know, but I feel like we had a great 48 hours on the practice court, we got a lot of work in. Hopefully, we can carry it to tomorrow night,” James said.
The Lakers didn’t manage to upgrade their roster ahead of last week’s trade deadline despite falling further down in the standings. While the Lakers can potentially still sign players off the buyout market, James said he has been expecting the current roster to remain unchanged for a while now.
“I don’t play fantasy basketball,” James said. “This is the team that we have, I’ve always had that same sense since we started. Only thing that’s changed is who’s in the lineup because of injuries or COVID protocols, things of that nature.
“But my mind has never varied on who’s here and who will be coming in, I don’t play that game.”
In another positive sign for the Lakers, the All-Star forward reiterated L.A. showed some promising connectivity in Saturday’s 117-115 loss to the Warriors that almost resulted in a major road win.
“It’s unfortunate that I had one of the worst fourth quarters that I’ve had shooting during the time we were most connected [laughs],” said James, who went 1-for-10 from the field in the final quarter of the clash.
“But I definitely felt the energy, the energy was just great. I thought we were connected throughout that whole game and [the Warriors] are a team that’s been playing connected basketball all year long and it shows why they’re the No. 2 team in the West.”
Lakers reportedly failed to trade Russell Westbrook due to refusal to pay extra luxury tax
The Lakers stayed put at the trade deadline, reportedly failing to close deals including Talen Horton-Tucker, Kendrick Nunn, and Russell Westbrook due to their unwillingness to include draft picks as part of the packages.
But most recent rumors claim L.A.’s refusal to pay extra luxury tax was another why it failed to send Westbrook back to the Houston Rockets.
Have you subscribed to our YouTube channel? It’s the best way to watch player interviews, exclusive coverage from events, participate in live shows, and more!