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Currently the eighth seed in the Western Conference and 2-5 in their last seven games, the Lakers have not played as the formidable squad seen from seasons past after the team introduced Pelicans star Anthony Davis to their starting cast.
The addition of Russell Westbrook over the offseason had Lakers fans bullish on a rebound season following a disappointing 43-20 campaign in 2020-21 that ended in the first round of the postseason. However, to several fans’ concerns, Westbrook has not meshed as a standout third wheel to the Davis-LeBron dynamic in LA. Or at least when James is available.
As noted by Hoops Wire and OutKick’s Sam Amico, the Lakers have been without their superstar forward in LeBron James for several games due to both a nagging abdominal strain and a one-game suspension after his altercation with Detroit’s Isaiah Stewart.
Even in the early slump, Vogel’s prowess to work with new rotations — including key young guys like guard Talen Horton-Tucker and switching out liabilities like DeAndre Jordan — has been a noble effort. Still boasting a winning record in LA (104-60) and a 2019-20 championship should keep the Lakers brass at bay with their frustrations until the end of the season.
Follow along on Twitter: @AlejandroAveela