The Los Angeles Lakers have a tall task ahead of them as the red-hot Cleveland Cavaliers come to town.
Sunday night will see the Cleveland Cavaliers head to Los Angeles to take on the Los Angeles Lakers. The Lakers, home of former Cavs legend LeBron James, are bottoming out at 2-6 and are heading nowhere. The Russell Westbrook trade was bad enough, as they lost out on key players like Kyle Kuzma and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope. Both guys would be helping the Lakers avoid the start they’re having.
Instead, James is having to carry the load at 37 and he’s not doing it anymore. He’s currently averaging near career-worse figures from the floor, shooting just 43.9%, the second lowest of his career. He’s also hitting three-point shots at the worst clip ever, making just 22.6%. Nearly seven points south of his previous worst season, his rookie year back in 2003-2004. James is shooting much more than ever from behind the arc as well, attempting nearly eight shots per game over the last two years.
That’s due to the fact the Lakers have no real outside shooting to rely on. James is no longer capable of dragging a team of nobodies to the playoffs, and that’s never been more obvious with names like Anthony Davis and Russell Westbrook on the squad. Is Davis not the same player he was? Is the issue James?
You’d think those two guys, and three randos would be enough to win games. After all, Davis is supposed to be in his prime still. The stats would say they’re doing well, but their play would say otherwise. The Cavs should be looking at this washed Lakers’ squad for what it is; a trap game.
The Lakers aren’t better than the Sacramento Kings, let alone the Cavaliers and as long as the Cavs play like they’re the best, this game won’t be close. Still, we gotta prep for them nonetheless.
Three Los Angeles Lakers that the Cleveland Cavaliers have to prep for
LeBron James is still a good player, even if Father Time is catching up to him. He’s still a smart player too, which adds a lot to how you gameplan him. He may not be as good as he once was, but if the Cavaliers don’t put bodies in his way to slow him down, while patrolling the paint as well as they do, for one game he can be as good as he ever was.
Lonnie Walker is one of the few guys on the Lakers who has the speed to dip into a lane and score from inside. His time in San Antonio wasn’t impressive, but Walker can have a long career as a starter in the NBA off of his ability to get to the paint. He needs to stop shooting threes, however, as he’s barely better than James in that regard.
Austin Reeves is the only player on the Lakers who A) plays regularly and B) can shoot. The only problem with Reeves is he’s not a selfish player, so he’s passing up shots he should be taking. The lakers can’t hit threes to save their lives, so why are they not getting Reeves more opportunities? If Reeves can break out and get eight or nine shots off, he can do some damage to the Cavs.