LOS ANGELES – After 19 games this regular season, the Los Angeles Lakers are down 9-10 (.474) and underperforming.
On Tuesday night, they fell to the New York Knicks 106-100 on their five-game road trip against teams from the Eastern Conference. They have one game left on Wednesday against the Indiana Pacers, before returning to the home court on Friday. Of the last four games played, they have only won one.
“You have to understand that we are still in search of finding our true identity, but that will not happen until we are whole and healthy. For example, giving up 130 points to the Celtics the other day (it can’t happen), I need to see more intensity and toughness on the defensive end, ”said coach Frank Vogel.
Injuries, illnesses and now even expulsions – LeBron James received a suspension game for his altercation with Isaiah Stewart – have not allowed the Angelenos to find a regularity in their game and with all their pieces available to one hundred percent.
“I do not like to excuse my illness, much less, we missed punctual shots this game, we did not score at the end, that was the difference,” said Anthony Davis, who presented a picture of malaise and fever hours before the game against Knicks that questioned their participation. “Although it certainly would have been a great help if I hadn’t been sick and LeBron had been able to play.”
The numbers point to the irregularity that purple and gold have shown. According to statistics company StatMuse, Lakers are 25th in NBA offensive rankings, 20th defensive rankings, 28th place in points allowed, 29th place in turnovers, 20th place in triples per game and have been down by 25 points in a third of the games this season. That is, they are at the bottom of the entire Association in various areas.
“We have to find a balance, figure out how we will play offense, commit to playing as a team offensively and when we do, it looks amazing and you see the potential for what it can be, but we are not playing for each other enough. That is part of building cohesion and the right habits. On the defensive side, the players will have important roles if they commit to the defensive side, we have not been up to the task. We know there will be ups and downs of adaptation, (there is) a lot of work to do on both sides of the ball, but we will get to that point, ”Vogel said.
Lakers continue with the losses of Trevor Ariza, Kendrick Nunn and Austin Reaves due to injury. The good news is that LeBron James will be able to return to the floor in the last game of the current tour this Wednesday against the Pacers, after serving his suspension game.
The Lakers are ninth in the Western Conference, while their next rival, the Pacers, is 13th in the East at 8-11.