Lakers Star LeBron James Heaps Praise on Rival Coach Amid Struggles

Getty Images LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers.

The Los Angeles Lakers dropped to 12-12 with a loss to the Clippers on Friday night and LeBron James had a healthy amount of praise for Ty Lue following the matchup.

The Clippers drilled three consecutive 3-pointers to seal the game and hold off a late Lakers charge, leading LeBron James to deliver some strong comments on his former head coach.

“T-Lue is great. Simple as that. Obviously you guys know I played for him and what we was able to do. T-Lue is great,” James told reporters after the game. “He’s great at every facet of the game. As a coach, he doesn’t have a weakness.”

James’ co-star Anthony Davis was also impressed with Lue down the stretch with his play-calling.

“They knew we were rotating, and T-Lue out of the time out, instead of having Luke Kennard cut through, he went strong side and kind of put us in a jam,” Davis said postgame. “Great play call.”

Frank Vogel Under Fire as Lakers Struggle

Getty ImagesHead coach Frank Vogel of the Los Angeles Lakers.

The Lakers sit at just .500 following another loss and haven’t been able to string together more than three wins this season. Lakers skipper Frank Vogel has been under fire for the team’s struggles, with the team unable to get a consistent effort on both ends of the court.

Vogel’s job security has been a consistent topic of discussion and he was put on notice by ESPN talking head Stephen A. Smith on NBA Countdown.

“These are the Lakers. This is Tinseltown. We’re looking at LeBron James—36 ain’t getting any younger,” Smith said. “We’re looking at Russell Westbrook—32 ain’t getting any younger. We’re looking at AD, we got questions about chemistry. We got questions about commitment and dedication. We damn sure got questions about their defense, which has been ranked in the bottom five throughout the season.”

Smith left no question about what he thinks will happen if the Lakers continue to play below average.

“I expect the Lakers to fire Frank Vogel,” Smith said. “If this continues Frank Vogel, in my opinion, will not be the head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers come All-Star Weekend.”

Lakers Still Finding Rythm, Rotations With New Faces

The Lakers are more than a fourth of the way through the season but are still searching for answers and chemistry with all the new faces in the lineup. James, Davis and young gun Talen Horton-Tucker were the only holdovers from last year’s roster, so it’s taken Vogel some time to find out what works, especially with Russell Westbrook in the mix.

Vogel recently stepped up with a speech to his team with things going south against a mediocre Kings team earlier this week.

“Every now and then the coach has to light a fire under his team,” Vogel said. “And today (against the Kings) was one of those games.”

Vogel’s speech worked, with the Lakers going on a 67-33 run in the second half and pulling out a much-needed victory.

The Lakers will try to erase the sting of the loss to the Clippers on Tuesday against the Celtics.

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