The Los Angeles Lakers have underperformed significantly this season. Ahead of the season, the Lakers were expected to be NBA championship contenders. But they have massively underdelivered, and their chances to secure a playoff spot are by no means very strong.
But one NBA analyst thinks that the Lakers could surprise the rest of the Western Conference, especially given the current state of the league. Bill Simmons noted that the injuries to Draymond Green and Chris Paul, key players on two of the best teams in the Western Conference, could allow the Los Angeles Lakers to take advantage and make a deep run in the NBA playoffs.
“This year, who knows? Chris Paul’s gonna miss 8 weeks. Could Phoenix drop back to the pack? Could Golden State pass Phoenix for the 1-seed even though they’re 6 games back? After Memphis, I don’t like any of the other teams. I think they are all flawed. You go Dallas, you go Denver, you go Utah, anybody else… I don’t want to see LeBron (James) and Davis. I don’t even care who they are playing with. Just those 2 guys and 3 role players, who knows?”
The Lakers will be hoping to use the final weeks of the NBA season to recapture any momentum they had, and try to secure a playoff spot going forward. Anthony Davis will be unavailable to them for most of this stretch, as he suffered another injury setback that will keep him out for at least 4 weeks.
LeBron James has been playing some excellent basketball, and all he needs to do is keep up that level. As for Russell Westbrook, he will need to show some massive improvement, as he has not played the way the Lakers expected him to when they first traded for him. But if things go their way, the Lakers may still be able to salvage their season.