LOS ANGELES – The Lakers‘the all-new Big Three made its preseason debut in a 111-99 loss to the Golden State Warriors Tuesday. And while the result of Russell westbrook, James lebron and Anthony davis“The first time together on the court was another loss to drop LA’s record to 0-5 in their show schedule, the post-game message echoed by the stars was a message requiring patience but exuding positivity.
“It’s going to take us a minute to become the team we know we can be,” said James, who has 17 points, 6 rebounds, 3 steals and 6 turnovers. “We’re going to have times when we’re not quite there. We can take steps back. But it’s all part of… I think nothing’s worth having if it’s not worth having. work for it. “
Westbrook, who made his way to the Lakers in the offseason by winning over the Wizards of Washington to seek a deal, looked the best he’s ever had in purple and gold – which doesn’t mean much, considering he combined to shoot 4 for 19 with 16 turnovers on his first two outings. But his speed in public, flanked by so much talent, will make the difference this season.
“We had some good pushes,” Westbrook said after finishing with 10 points, 10 rebounds, 6 assists and 5 turnovers. “Obviously this is the first game. But there are some good things that we can learn from it.… We can be a little encouraged by that.”
For James, who enters the season looking for a fifth ring that would equalize his career tally with Kobe Bryant, Magic Johnson and Tim Duncan, moral victories mean little. Still, the 19-year veteran is committed to guiding his group through their nascent stages.
“Me, as a leader, my job is for me not to be frustrated,” he said. “If I’m not frustrated I think it will trickle down to everyone. I’ve never been a person who accepts not being excellent. But I also understand that things take time. As long as I care. the main thing the main thing, stay calm throughout everything that is going on with our ball club, then everything will be fine. “
Davis was more than good against Golden State, leading the Lakers with 20 points on a 7-for-12 shot with 6 rebounds, 2 steals and 2 blocks. He was encouraged by his first glimpse of LA’s new-look lineup with him from the 5th, with James, Westbrook, Carmelo Anthony and Kent bazemore.
“We saw some great things with me, Bron and Russ in action,” said Davis. “There are endless possibilities, the things we can do and what we can do.… And while there were good things, a lot of things we can do better.”
The Lakers end the preseason Thursday on the road against the Kings of Sacramento and have a week until the opening of the regular season, back home against the Warriors.
There’s still a lot of work to be done before the Lakers get closer to a final product, starting with getting all of their players healthy. Trevor Ariza (ankle surgery) should be missed at least two months; Talen Horton-Tucker (thumb surgery) will be shelved for about a month; and Kendrick nunn (right ankle) and Wayne ellington (left hamstrings) the two were away on Tuesday, with Monk Malik (groin), who will be away for about another week.
“So if these guys aren’t playing, now how do we get them in?” Davis said. “So we haven’t had our full team where we can go over every detail, but it looks good so far.”
With an 82-game season about to start for a group ultimately only caring about getting 16 wins from April through June, the time is on the Lakers’ side.
“It could take a whole year to really be at our best, and ideally that’s when we’re at our best – heading into the playoffs,” Lakers coach Frank Vogel said. “But we’ve got the mindset to kick in and out of doors really strong with things clicking the best we can.… But it’s reasonable to think there are going to be some rough nights at the start of the season. , but we had expectations two years ago and we jumped the doors pretty hard. So that’s what we’re hoping for. “