The Los Angeles Lakers have really struggled in the absence of Anthony Davis, who is expected to miss a month with an Achilles injury. LeBron James addressed the state of things after the team's most recent loss.
Davis went out after playing 14 minutes in the team's 122-105 loss to the Denver Nuggets on Feb. 14. They won their first game without AD, against the lowly Minnesota Timberwolves, but have since lost four straight games to the Brooklyn Nets, Miami Heat, Washington Wizards, and Utah Jazz. They failed to reach 100 points in three of those four games, with a 124 point effort against the Wizards propping it up.
On Wednesday night, the Lakers were drubbed by the NBA's top team, the Jazz, 114-89. James led the team with 19 points, and was just one of three Lakers who managed to get into double-digits. The Jazz had six.
"It's a tough stretch for us," LeBron James admitted after the loss. "But this won't define who we will be for the rest of the season or the long haul."
That is probably a fair takeaway. The Los Angeles Lakers are built around LeBron James and Anthony Davis. Missing one of them is a huge deal.
The team has also been without one of its best role players and offseason acquisitions in Dennis Schroder, who is third on the team with 14.2 points per game, and minutes, averaging 31.1.
The Lakers are hopeful he'll give a boost to their backcourt before a big game against Damian Lillard and the Portland Trail Blazers on Friday.
That game tips off at 10 p.m. ET. The season is still young, but the Lakers definitely hope to avoid pushing the losing streak to five games, and a further tumble down the Western Conference standings.
LeBron James: "It's a tough stretch for us, but this won't define who we will be for the rest of the season or the long haul."
— Ryan Ward (@RyanWardLA) February 25, 2021