Given that the Lakers are marching on with their uneven play, team owner Jeanie Buss said she understands how LeBron James must feel.
“Unless he’s winning, he’s not gonna be happy. That’s him,” Buss said of James. “That’s what drives him and I could see why he would be frustrated.”
The Lakers lost to the host Nets on Monday, while missing James and Anthony Davis, both sidelined with minor injures. They now sit in 13th place in the 15-team Western Conference. So James probably isn’t the only one who’s frustrated — just, perhaps, way overworked.
“We’re all frustrated,” Buss said. “When you know we’re down four starters and he’s our only remaining starter, he’s got to show up and play. The burden’s on him and he picks everybody up when he plays.”
As for newcomer Rui Hachimura, Buss said they met shortly after last week’s trade with the Wizards. She was particularly impressed with his selection of jersey No. 28.
“I asked him, ‘Have chosen a number yet?’ and he said, ‘Yeah, I’m wearing No. 28,'” Buss told Smith.
Hachimura went on to explain that the “two” was representing Gianna Bryant and the “eight” would represent her late father and Lakers legend Kobe Bryant.
“I was like, ‘This kid is going to do good,'” Buss said.
Buss and Smith also discussed Bryant’s legacy, as well as her groundbreaking work in women’s sports. You can watch the full interview in the video below.
— Stephen A Smith (@stephenasmith) January 31, 2023