With another loss by the Los Angeles Lakers in which they had a lead before losing it in the second half, questions have never been louder about the makeup of Luke Walton’s squad. Growing pains were expected with a young roster such as this, but the lack of effort at times has been disappointing to many.
The Lakers latest setback came at the hands of the Dallas Mavericks, a team that sits at the bottom of the Western Conference standings, but now has two wins in Los Angeles. After the game, Walton was obviously unhappy with his team.
According to Lakers reporter Mike Trudell, Walton questioned how badly the Lakers wanted to develop immediately, as opposed to just natural development that comes with time:
Walton asked the players how much it meant to figure it out this season vs. the natural development that will come as they gain experience.
— Mike Trudell (@LakersReporter) December 30, 2016
The most important thing for the Lakers this season has always been development and growth with its young core. As the team continues to lose games in the same way, however, many will begin wondering how high the ceiling really is for this team.
As time goes on, the young players will naturally get better, but if they put in the work, that development process can be accelerated. The work ethic of the Lakers has been lauded by coaches and the young core even got the nickname of ‘The Breakfast Club’ because of their early-morning workouts during the off-season.
Unfortunately the promise the Lakers showed at the outset of the season has completely disappeared and it will be on the shoulders of the young kids to turn it around. Doing so will require plenty of hard work and inner-growth. It may not show up in the next game, but as the season goes on these Lakers need to show continued improvement to keep the franchise and the fans happy.