Los Angeles Lakers head coach Frank Vogel had a somber tone as he sent a clear message as his team stares at potentially being eliminated from the postseason by the Phoenix Suns. Vogel emphasized his team’s desire and drive will be put to the test in Game 6 against the Suns.
“We’ll find out,” Vogel admitted in his Game 5 postgame press conference. “We’ll found out what we’re made of, and we’ll find out how bad we want this.”
Vogel also had a pointed message to the Lakers shooters noting they need to “figure it out” ahead of Game 6. The Lakers are shooting just 30.2% from behind the three-point line through the first five games of the series.
“Yeah, we’re struggling to shoot the ball,” Vogel noted. “Our shooters got to figure it out. We got to continue to work on our execution offensively to see the ball go in the basket. We didn’t defend well enough in the first half. So, there’s both sides of the ball. We’re looking at a spark from some of the other guys.”
LeBron on Facing Elimination: ‘You Shoot All the Bullets You Got & Throw the Gun Too’
LeBron James is no stranger to elimination games, and the superstar explained there is no holding back in Game 6. With Anthony Davis’ status up in the air, James may once again be forced to shoulder a bigger burden against the Suns.
“I mean, it’s literally win or go home at that point,” James said, per ESPN’s Dave McMenamin. “So, you shoot all the bullets you got and throw the gun too. So, I look forward to the environment. Obviously, our Laker faithful are going to give us a lot of energy, and I look forward to the moment, look forward to the challenge, and we’ll see if it brings out the best in me and my teammates.”
LeBron Reportedly Encouraged A.D. Not to Rush Back From His Groin Injury
Yahoo Sports’ Chris Haynes reported that Davis “looked disheartened” after struggling through a Game 5 pregame workout before failing to get cleared to play. Haynes added that James advised Davis not to “rush” back from his groin injury, but it remains to be seen if this extends into Game 6.
“Davis told teammates he was going to push to play in Game 5, league sources told Yahoo Sports,” Haynes explained. “LeBron James encouraged Davis not to rush it, noting the personal bout he had with the same injury, sources said.”
Davis is hopeful that he will take the floor in the Lakers’ must-win game against the Suns, but the big man will need to be cleared by the team’s medical staff. Davis pointed to his recent treatments as potentially improving his chances to suit up in Game 6.
“Hopefully all the rehab and treatment that I’m doing pays off and the doctors clear me to go tomorrow,” Davis explained, per Yahoo Sports. “I’m getting more treatment tonight, tomorrow and I’ll talk to the doctors before and after I shoot and hopefully everything comes back good where they can clear me. That’s what we’re hoping for.”