The Los Angeles Lakers ended their road trip on a sour note on Tuesday, as they lost to the Brooklyn Nets at Barclays Center. That loss came fresh off of a loss to the Washington Wizards, who were without several of their key players.
While neither of those losses had any affect on their place in the standings, LeBron James understands that every game counts in the Western Conference, and following the Lakers’ loss to the Nest on Tuesday, he expressed how disappointed he was with the way his team played during their four-game road trip (via Spectrum SportsNet):
“We’ve got to got to continue to get better. We don’t just take the losses and throw them away. Not in the wild, wild West when every game counts and every game matters. We could have had a pretty good road trip, but 1-3 is definitely not the way that we would like to have it.”
This past road trip was the longest of the season for the Lakers so far, and they fought through it without several of their key players. However, Kyle Kuzma said that those absences can’t fully explain the effort the team has put forth over the last two games:
“It’s been a long road trip but we can’t make that excuse. We’re professionals, we get paid a lot of money to go out and compete every night and it’s our job to bring energy no matter what. That’s just our job.”
All three of Lakers’ losses on this road trip were against below .500 teams. As a matter of fact, all but two of their losses (Toronto and Denver) this season have been against teams that are .500 or worse.
But despite the lackadaisical effort the Lakers have shown in their last two outings, James has complete confidence that they’ll bounce back:
“I think we’re playing some really good basketball. The last couple games didn’t look too bright for us but I think we have a really bright future and I look forward to continuing to get better and better and that’s all you can ask for.”
The Lakers will regroup on Thursday before they host the New Orleans Pelicans at Staples Center on Friday. There’s a good chance they’ll have a mostly healthy roster by then, but if not, they aren’t going to let that be an excuse to not figure out how to avoid making it three losses in a row.