After the Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Houston Rockets to come out of the All-Star Break on a positive note, many felt that this would be the turning point. However, an extremely disappointing loss to the New Orleans Pelicans, who were without Anthony Davis, cooled much of that.
LeBron James was terrific yet again, but the Lakers’ defense and turnovers remained trouble spots. James was clearly agitated with how the game went, and felt that more could have been done by the team to fight for a win.
He felt that the roster’s lack of experience led to a similar lack of urgency, since they didn’t know what it was like to be in that situation.
James’ comments were extremely critical, and they come at a time where the Lakers need some type of push if they’re going to win enough of their final 23 games to make the playoffs, via Dave McMenamin of ESPN:
“How many know what’s at stake if you’ve never been there?” James asked Saturday after L.A. went down by as many as 20 points to a Pelicans team that was resting Davis and came into the night eight games under .500.
“I’m playing devil’s advocate, you know? It’s kind of a fine line when you talk about that, because when you’ve never been there or know what it takes to actually shoot for something like that, sometimes you’re afraid to get uncomfortable.
“So you got to be comfortable with being uncomfortable. So I’m not saying that’s what we are as a whole. It kind of looks that way at times, that sometimes we’re afraid to be uncomfortable and kind of get out of our comfort zone and kind of, you know, have that sense of urgency from the jump, and not be afraid to actually go out and fail to succeed. So I mean, we have, what — 23 games left? We’ll see what happens.”
James is correct in the fact that he has no idea what it’s like to be on a team that isn’t contending for a title, as he’s been a preseason contender since at least 2007.
However, the roster beside him is completely inexperienced. JaVale McGee and Rajon Rondo have each won a championship, and Lance Stephenson has been part of his fair share of playoff battles.
Nevertheless, there is room for James’ words to motivate the Lakers, because there is truth to what is being said. However, if the team does not agree with his opinion, it could be lead to a disastrous end to the season.
Reminder: Vivid Seats is the Official Ticket Reseller of LakersNation.com. New Customers use “LAKERSNATION” (all CAPS) in the Vivid Seats App on your phone and get 10% off any Lakers home game ticket order for the remainder of the season.