Star forward LeBron James was clearly a bit disheartened by the Lakers’ season-opening loss to the defending champion Warriors, pointing out what he perceives to be a team’s flaw.
“To be completely honest, we’re not a team that’s constructed of great shooting,” he told reporters. “That’s just the truth of the matter.
“It’s not like we’re sitting here with a lot of lasers on our team.”
The Lakers did added several players in free agency — from guards Lonnie WalkerIV to Juan Toscano-Anderson to Patrick Beverley, via trade. Walker actually started and while he did a decent job, he is among the players on the roster who’s not exactly viewed as a deadeye perimeter shooter. Same goes, really, for just about anyone on the roster.
Meanwhile, the Lakers seem to still be figuring out if guard Russell Westbrook is a fit next to James and forward Anthony Davis. The three definitely had their moments during the opener, but not enough to make you think the Lakers will be much better than the 33-49 record they managed last season.
“I think we played well,” Davis said, via Dave McMenamin of ESPN. “We wanted to come out and everybody be aggressive. We didn’t want to — I think last year at times we were playing selfless, like, ‘Here [you take it].’ … It took away our aggression. At certain moments throughout the game, one of us three were aggressive, and it worked out for it to look good.”
Westbrook suffered a hamstring strain during the preseason finale, in which he appeared to blame the fact he came off the bench in that game.
“I’ve been doing the same thing for 14 years straight,” he said, via McMenamin. “Honestly, I didn’t even know what to do pregame. Being honest, I was trying to figure out how to stay warm and loose. … That’s something I just wasn’t accustomed to.”
New coach Darvin Ham decided to start Westbrook in the opener.
“You want to start the game off the right way in terms of your energy and being in attack mode, and no one better than him,” Ham said, via McMenamin. “I mean, it’s what we have, and we got some key guys hurt. It’s Game 1, give them a chance to go out and compete at the highest level. I thought he was solid. I thought he was solid. A couple possessions I wish I can get back, but overall, I thought he was solid.”