When it was Wednesday night, after that Anthony DavisThe “must win” declaration in Washington ended with a 116-107 loss to the wizard, the Los Angeles Lakers‘Star Big Man stayed on the bench to think a little about his team’s position.
After Davis missed nine weeks with calf strain and Achilles tendonitis in his right leg, LA has not been able to start since his return. The loss to the Wizards brought the Lakers back to 3-1 with Davis and stumbled in the ranking and now with only 1½ game lead over No. 6 Dallas Mavericks and a two-game lead over No. 7 Portland Trail Blazer with 10 games left in the regular season.
“We control our own destiny,” Davis told reporters at a video conference call after the game. “So we have to start playing with a sense of desperation, even though we’re in the playoffs right now. But we’re not that far from being in play-in games. So we have to play with one.” Desperate feeling too. “
The Wizards, winners of 10 of 12 on Wednesday, took control of the game in the second and third quarters, beating LA 59-42 in the middle frame.
Washington raised the lead to 19 with 9 minutes and 11 seconds in the fourth quarter before the Lakers showed some of the desperation Davis was hinting at.
After Davis moved to the middle – the position he often occupied in the 2020 postseason en route to the NBA title – the Lakers were able to cut Washington’s pillows to nine points in 5½ minutes, but the deficit quickly increased by one on 16 back 12-5 wizards whirl up.
Davis scored 14 of his 26 points in the fourth while shooting 5-on-8 off the field. While it wasn’t enough to get the win, it was a look at the player the Lakers had been used to since trading for him in the summer of 2019.
The faster Davis can get up to speed, the better, because Lebron James is about to return from a six week absence due to a severe ankle sprain.
As brilliant as James was in his career, he’s still 36, playing in his 18th season and trying to get back on the field with a few brand new teammates for important games. And he hasn’t played a lick in a month and a half.
Anthony Davis attempts to block Rui Hachimura’s dunk but fails when he is posterized, shoots a shot in the face, and lands on the floor.
“I don’t think my brain can process the opportunities that arise [James] being on the ground, “said Drummond after scooping 17 points and 11 rebounds against the wizards.” Right now we can’t control him when he’s in there. We have to worry about the guys who are playing right now. So all we have to worry about is building chemistry with them and when it comes I am sure that great things will happen for everyone. “
Lakers coach Frank Vogel wasn’t interested in rehashing the loss that saw the Wizards outpacing LA 50-41 and shooting 52.2% off the field.
“We just have to be happy,” said Vogel. “We have six of our next eight at home, seven if you count that Clippers Game and we have to get out of this journey and keep working on what we do. “
James could be back for that Clippers game – if not sooner – during LA’s final push before the postseason.
About 6½ months ago the Lakers were champions at the top of the basketball world. And two and a half months ago they were almost at the top of the overall standings with 21: 6.
And in three and a half weeks, the playoffs will begin, whether the Lakers are ready or not.
“I mean nothing has changed since the start of the season,” said Lakers Dennis Schroder said. “I mean nothing has changed. We’ll keep trying to get better and yes, we’ll be fine for the playoffs.”