The Los Angeles Lakers are perhaps the most popular franchise in the entire NBA, boasting a truly global fanbase thanks to their history of success in almost every era of basketball since the league began. Naturally, this means the Lakers get a lot of media hype before the season begins and during as well, with the expectation being that they will win the championship. The fact that they now have names like LeBron James, Anthony Davis and Russell Westbrook on the roster only compounds this.
And while the reasoning may be easy to swallow when they are doing well, the constant talk about the Lakers can get on the nerves of some people if they are struggling during the season. Phoenix Suns guard Cameron Payne seems to fall into this category, sharing his opinion that there is no reason for the Lakers to be constantly discussed when they are underperforming so much. He spoke out on a Twitter space and his words went viral among NBA fans on Reddit as well.
"We the number one team in the world and you worried about the Lakers. They (the Lakers) are the worst team in the West."
While there are certainly teams with a worse record than the Lakers in the Western Conference, a lot of those have either struggled with injuries to their stars or were expected to be poor when the season began. The fact that Los Angeles is the 9th seed and 4 games below .500 is a terrible return for the sort of moves they have made and the star power at their disposal.
Payne's irritation also makes sense when considering how well the Suns are doing. Having gotten off to their best start in franchise history, Phoenix has the best record in the entire NBA at 44-10. They were in the Finals last season and look ready to make another run for the title, yet they receive very little attention as compared to the Lakers. While it would be ideal for the media to focus on the Suns' success, the only way for Phoenix to make it happen is to go all the way and with the championship.