Unfortunately for the Los Angeles Lakers, Monday night brought about another excruciating loss to start the season. A 143-142 overtime defeat to the San Antonio Spurs dropped LeBron James and the Lakers to 0-3.
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This is the first time a James team has started 0-3 since his rookie season, and it’s the first such start for the Lakers since opening the 2016 campaign 0-4. Many of the questions and concerns about the team heading into the season have only grown louder.
“It’s not tough. I know what I got myself into,” James said following the loss. “It’s a process, I get it. We’ll be fine.”
Before the season, James spoke about needing to have patience with the team. Not only are the Lakers reliant on very young talent, but those players must gel with a bunch of veterans brought in alongside James.
“I didn’t come here thinking we were going to be blazing storms right out of the game. It’s a process, and I understand that,” James reiterated.
There have certainly been great stretches from the Lakers in their first three contests, especially on offense. Despite their outside shooting struggles, theu still rank third in the NBA in points per game and shooting percentage.
They have also done a tremendous job of establishing the pace they want to play at while limiting turnovers. Aside from three-point shooting, most of their issues have come defensively which usually takes longer to lock in for new teams.
The Lakers are dead last in points allowed, though some of that has to do with their pace as they are in the middle of the pack in defensive field goal percentage and have also had major struggles on the defensive glass.
All of these issues are things that can be improved over time and while James isn’t pressing the panic button at this time, there is no doubt he is pushing himself and the rest of the team to get over this major obstacle to start the season.