As the season comes to a close, the Los Angeles Lakers have put themselves in a position to compete for a playoff spot. LA struggled mightily at the beginning of the season, but a series of successful trade deadline moves helped get them back on track.
On Friday night, they took care of business against a short-handed Phoenix Suns team. It was a game they needed to win if they wanted to continue their climb in the Western Conference Standings. After the game, LeBron James showed love to Malik Beasley and some other players on the Lakers.
“Well, I mean, there’s nobody that they can really just key on,” James explained via the NBA Interviews YouTube channel. “They can’t just key on AD [Anthony Davis]. They can’t just key on me. When you have Beas [Beasley] shooting the way he was shooting tonight. You got D-Lo [D’Angelo Russell] shooting the ball at a high rate. You got AR [Austin Reaves], who’s been playing exceptional all season. Just keeps the defense always at bay.”
Beasley played a huge role for the Lakers in their win over the Suns, putting in a solid shift off the bench. He finished the night with 21 points, two rebounds, two assists, and two steals on 7-of-14 shooting from the field and 4-of-10 shooting from behind the three-point line.
As for James, he also played well against Phoenix but was relatively inefficient. The Lakers superstar ended the game with 16 points, six rebounds, and six assists on 6-of-19 shooting from the floor and 3-of-7 shooting from beyond the three-point arc.
Anthony Davis Sends Message on Mo Bamba
After the Los Angeles Lakers’ recent loss to the LA Clippers, Davis spoke about the importance of team chemistry and how LA hasn’t been able to generate that just yet, but with the return of Mo Bamba, they should start to get back on track down the stretch.
“I probably had it in my mind that I was going to play regardless just because of the game. But I think we gained more chemistry,” Davis said via the NBA Interviews YouTube channel. “Even though it’s not the result we wanted, we were able to get a healthy squat. Even though Mo didn’t play, just getting him back. Getting all our guys back and healthy and getting reps out on the floor for these last two games and then leading into the playoffs.”
LeBron James Name-Drops D’Angelo Russell
In addition, James also spoke about the team’s chemistry, noting that it’s been hard since both he and Russell have missed time due to injury.
“Obviously, since the trade [deadline], we’ve been playing some good basketball,” James said via the NBA Interviews YouTube channel. “But the one thing we’ve been lacking a little bit is just the consistency of our lineups. And obviously, I was out for four weeks, and D-Lo has kind of been in and out. But for the majority of it, guys have definitely stepped up. So, with these last two games, you definitely want to see if we can figure something out as far as our chemistry. But at the end of the day, we’ve still been playing good ball. So, not thinking about that too much.”