The Los Angeles Lakers have been disappointing in the 2021-22 NBA season to say the very least. Pundits were originally concerned about the age of the team, and although LeBron James boldly claimed that they would prove their doubters wrong, the Lakers have proved doubters wrong through 21 games.
Fans have started to clamor for the firing of head coach Frank Vogel, but former basketball star and current ESPN analyst Kendrick Perkins have come to Vogel's defense. The head coach has been under major heat from Laker Nation, as they believe he is not putting the players on the roster to good use, but Perkins thinks otherwise.
"People blaming Vogel for the lack of defensive effort is funny to me! You have a VETERAN ball club that are having multiple breakdowns on the defensive and offensively can’t get into sets to run some good offense. Can’t BLAME the Coach for that. That’s on your VETS! Period."
After the disappointing triple-overtime loss to the Sacramento Kings, the fans are growing increasingly frustrated, and rightly so. It is difficult to fathom that such talent on the roster can be under .500 after 21 games.
For a team that finished first in defensive rating during the 2020-21 season, their display so far this season has been dismal. It was obvious that the Lakers will lack perimeter defense seeing as they lost Alex Caruso and brought in Russell Westbrook. But they have had more problems in the paint, as opposition players meet little or no resistance whenever they drive to the basket.
Perkins might have a point, as ego could be the issue plaguing the Lakers. They have brought together elite players who might not be willing to do the gritty work required to win ball games comfortably.
The Lakers are running out of time and would need to turn things around as quickly as possible to correct a 10-11 run so far this season. LeBron has done a fair job leading the team and even held himself accountable after a poor shooting night against the Kings. More players need to step up and play at the level they can play at.