The 2021-22 season has been a frustrating experience for the Los Angeles Lakers, who can’t shift up a gear despite having a tremendous amount of talent on the roster.
Injuries make up for a significant part of L.A.’s problem. The Purple and Gold have had to play without LeBron James and Anthony Davis, among others, for long stretches of the current campaign. Meanwhile, Kendrick Nunn is yet to make his Lakers debut.
However, Wayne Ellington points out the team has been dramatically inconsistent throughout the season — an issue that can’t be pinned down to injuries only.
“It’s kind of been our kryptonite all year. Our consistency,” Ellington said after the 20-point loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves.
“In terms of lineups, in terms of guys in the rotation. Guys getting hurt, guys having up-and-down nights. I don’t think so far this year we’ve really found a stride or hit a stride. We played the same style, the same consistent way all year long.
“As you see out there, we’ll get down 20. We’ll cut it to 10, cut it to eight. It takes a lot of our energy and the next thing you know we’re down 20 again. That’s one thing that we got to establish, especially going into this potential Play-In situation is our consistency on both sides of the floor. Our energy and our effort.”
However, Ellington adds the Lakers have enough experience to resist the adversity and keep trying to turn their fortunes around for as long as the season goes on.
“It’s tough. We got a veteran group and one thing we’ve been able to do in our locker room is keep hope alive and keep our energy within our team alive and stay positive with each other. We’re hoping for a break at the right time,” he said.
Frank Vogel thinks Lakers put too much pressure on themselves, leading to poor shooting
The Lakers have been struggling to score early on during games, shooting an NBA-worst 39.4% from the field in the first halves of the last five matchups.
Head coach Frank Vogel suggests L.A. might be trying to fix their aim too much, with the pressure they put on themselves paralyzing the players after tip-off.
“Tough to put your finger on it,” Vogel said.
“You can speculate as to what it is. Our guys really want it. We really want to turn this around. Guys are putting in the work. There’s a high-care factor, so maybe they’re putting too much pressure on themselves to start the game, but we just got to figure it out.”
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!