Monday night was a bit of a rarity for LeBron James and Anthony Davis. For just the fifth time since they became teammates in 2019, James and Davis were both held to under 20 points. James had 19 points, while Davis had 17.
However, that didn’t stop the Los Angeles Lakers from keeping their game against the Golden State Warriors competitive. In fact, in the first half, they led by as much as 19 points. Dennis Schröder led all scorers in the first half with 18 points and he posted a plus-minus of +30.
Unfortunately, that wasn’t enough to get the Lakers the win on Monday, nor was Montrezl Harrell’s 17 points off of the bench, but James still felt it was important to acknowledge their performances and their importance to the team; especially on nights where he and Davis don’t have it going like they usually do.
“Both of us was just a little out of rhythm, and I think we’re going to have games like that this year where we’re out of rhythm,” James said after the game. “The best thing about our team this year is we have guys that pick us up. Dennis was great; Trezz again coming off of the bench was great; Kuz got hot for us in that third, made some shots for us.
“In times where both of us are just a little bit out of rhythm, we have the ability to have teammates that pick us up and give us a chance to win, which we had tonight.”
The big question with both Schröder and Harrell specifically, though, is whether or not they can close games for the Lakers. Monday night was the firs time in a while that either of them have had to prove themselves in crunch time, and they didn’t exactly rise to the occasion. In the fourth quarter, Schröder posted a team-worst offensive rating of 50.0 and Harrell posted a team-worst defensive rating of 166.7.
Given how the second half as a whole played out for the entire team, that’s probably not indicative of what we should expect from in those situations going forward, but it’s definitely something that’s worth keeping an eye on, especially when you consider how Harrell’s tenure with the Clippers ended.
Aside from that, Schröder and Harrell have lived up to their expectations of taking the load off of James and Davis when necessary. It didn’t result in a win on Monday, but on most nights, it should, and on nights where all four of them have it going, they’ll definitely be okay.