The Los Angeles Lakers are 2-4 since the All Star Break. The Los Angeles Lakers sit in the 10th seed in the Western Conference and are 4.5 games behind the San Antonio Spurs for the final playoff spot. This is the most important week of the season as the Lakers face the Clippers, Nuggets, and Celtics as they are chasing the 8th seed in the Western Conference.
The Los Angeles Lakers lost back to back games over the weekend to the Milwaukee Bucks and the Phoenix Suns. The Lakers are 30-33 on the season and need to string together a winning streak to make the playoffs. The Lakers losing to the Phoenix Suns was embarrassing and put in question whether the Lakers can actually make the playoffs. The Lakers defense is giving up an average of 118 points per game since the All Star Break. The defense must get better in order for the Lakers to make the playoffs.
The one positive sign for Laker Nation is that the Lakers are 18-13 at home this year. An entire week of home games against good teams can be the only hope for the Lakers to go on a run and gain their confidence. There are still 19 games left for the Lakers to get their act together. Even in losses recently, the Lakers have fought and showed some good signs. On Friday, they were up 2 with 3 minutes left in the game against the best record team in the league at home. The huge game for the Lakers starts tonight against the Los Angeles Clippers.
A win tonight is needed for two reasons. The Lakers have split two games with the Clippers so far and have 2 games left head to head. The winner of the season series may determine who gets the final playoff spot in the West. Also the Lakers need a win to build some momentum for their next game against the Denver Nuggets. LeBron James needs to lead this team for these next 3 games at home and build a winning streak before going on the road for a five game road trip. Kyle Kuzma stated after the loss to the Suns, “If we don’t believe in each other, we’re gonna fail”. Everything is bad when you’re losing to teams that you should beat and Kyle Kuzma is clearly frustrated along with the rest of the team. A win tonight can start a winning streak that will put the Lakers back in position for the 8th seed in the Western Conference.
With 19 games left, the Los Angeles Lakers still have time to make up for their recent losses to the Phoenix Suns, New Orleans Pelicans, and Memphis Grizzlies. Brandon Ingram is playing the best basketball of his career since the All Star Break averaging 27.8 ppg. He is playing with supreme confidence and he must keep this up if the Lakers are going to make the playoffs.
Not making the playoffs would be a failure of a season for the Los Angeles Lakers and LeBron James, as he has reached the NBA Finals each of the last 8 seasons.
Featured Image: Travis via www.flickr.com