Max Christie: Lakers Must Embrace Sense Of Urgency From Last Season
Max Christie, Lakers
Sam Sharpe-USA TODAY Sports

It was around this time last season that the Los Angeles Lakers went on a run that carried them all the way to the Western Conference Finals. Currently sitting in ninth place in the West, second-year guard Max Christie is hopeful they can do the same this year.

Christie didn’t see much court time last year but has emerged as a solid option off the bench this season, looking more confident offensively while providing good defense as well. As far as what drove the Lakers last year, Christie feels it was simply having a sense of urgency, and believes they must embrace that once again this season.

“I think it was just a sense of urgency with all the guys,” Christie said after practice on Tuesday. “I don’t think there was anything crazy that we did differently pre-break to post-break.

“So I think for us, we just got to continue to build trust in each other, continue to capitalize on our work together and like I said, have that sense of urgency going into the home stretch of the season because we really only got 23 games left. So we’re already three-fourths of the way through the regular season at least. so for us, just having a sense of urgency trying to get the best seed we can going into the playoffs.”

The Lakers looked like they were finding their footing this season prior to the All-Star break winning six of their last seven contests. After losing two of three since play resumed, some wondered whether the break threw off the Lakers’ rhythm, but Christie feels the break was necessary.

“To me, I don’t really think so. Especially when we’re going through the season, I think that break is important for guys, especially mentally, I think that’s what it’s really for,” Christie added. “Physically too, but mentally, the season takes a toll on you for sure. It’s a long season, you’re playing a lot of good teams and traveling. So I think the break is super important and I think rhythm is pretty easy to build as long as you put the work in. So I think having a break is good.”

One thing that will help the Lakers get back on track and pick up the wins they need is to improve on the defensive glass. The Lakers allowed 14 offensive rebounds against the Phoenix Suns and Christie agreed with Davis’ assertion that the guards need to help on that front.

“Yeah, we got to help AD out, I think he said it last game,” Christie noted. “When you got a guy like Nurkic, he’s a massive human being. That’s a lot to handle for one human being so us as guards, we got a lot of big guards and big wings on the team so we got to come and help him rebound.

“He’s our anchor defensively and he does get a ton of rebounds for us, but there are times when he’s battling a big down there and we got to help him out. So that falls on the guards as well. AD is doing the best he can in the post so we got to do a better job.”

It will take a full team effort for the Lakers to get on track and build some momentum down the stretch of the season. Christie has shown he can contribute when given the opportunity and he will continue to put the work in and be ready whenever his number is called.

Cam Reddish expected to return for Lakers vs. Clippers

One thing that could affect Christie’s spot in the rotation is the expected return of Cam Reddish from an ankle sprain. Reddish is listed as probable for the Lakers’ Thursday night game against the Los Angeles Clippers, which would be his first game since Jan. 23.

Anthony Davis is also listed as probable for the contest while LeBron James is questionable. The Clippers will also be without All-Star Paul George due to left knee soreness.

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