Hall of Famer Rips Lakers After Loss: ‘Nobody is Afraid of Them’

Getty Images Anthony Davis of the Los Angeles Lakers talks with assistant coach Jason Kidd.

The Los Angeles Lakers were not impressive during their 99-90 loss to the Phoenix Suns on Sunday and were the target of some harsh criticism after the game, specifically from TNT analyst and Hall of Famer Charley Barkley.

Barkley fired back against the notion that the Lakers are the team to beat and put some pressure on Anthony Davis to perform better.

“I watch all these idiots, fools and jackasses on television saying the Lakers are the team to beat. I don’t think that’s true. There’s this notion that they can just show up and they’re going to win. Nobody is afraid of them. Anthony Davis and LeBron have not played real basketball in months,” Barkley said. “They played just like they did against the Warriors. The Warriors just played bad and Steph didn’t have any help. This is going to be an interesting series, to me, it’s a pick-em series. The Lakers are not playing well.”

Barkley: Anthony Davis is Key for Lakers

Davis did not have his best game against the Suns, looking timid on offense, scoring just 13 points. He also grabbed 7 rebounds and recorded 3 blocks, but was not the impact player that helped lead to Lakers to a title a year ago.

“Those two guys got to play great for the Lakers to win. They can’t put up just good number. Anthony Davis is the key,” Barkley said. “LeBron is going to do what LeBron does. But [Davis] was maybe the fourth or fifth [best player on the court]. If he’s not the second-best player on the court, they are not going to win.”

For what it’s worth, Davis — who finished with the worst plus-minus on the team — agrees with that take.

“There’s no way we’re winning a game, let alone a series, with me playing the way that I played,” Davis said after the loss. “So, I mean, this is on me. I take full responsibility, for sure. … We’ll be better Game 2.”

Anthony Davis, LeBron James Trend for Wrong Reason


Barkley wasn’t the only person to tear into the Lakers after the loss. In fact, both James and Davis were trending on Twitter following the game for all the wrong reasons. “LeMickey” and “ADisney” both became trending topics, shade for the Lakers stars that hinted that their championship inside the bubble last year at Disney World was fraudulent.

The phrase “LeFlop” also came up on trending topics, a reference to James hitting the court hard on a missed free throw attempt after contact with Suns guard Chris Paul.

Davis spoke out in a recent interview about haters that have called him soft this season

“I don’t give a (expletive) – it’s as simple as that,” he said in an interview with Kyle Goon of the O.C. Register. “If there are people who say that, most of them probably never were in the game. I really don’t care.

“I have nothing to prove to anyone,” he added. “I don’t think I have anything to prove to myself; only being another champion. That’s really it. I want to be able to win multiple championships; this is another opportunity for me to do so.”

Game 2 between the Lakers and Suns is on Tuesday.

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