We all know the rocky season the Lakers have had this season. We’re in the all-star break and the team is 25-29, good for 10th in the Western Conference. They haven’t played well all season and most of the games haven’t been exactly encouraging. They did go 8-4 in their last 12 games but their last game ended in an embarrassing blowout against the crosstown Clippers.
Kobe Bryant was asked by our own Phillip Barnett about his take on the season so far. This is what Kobe had to say in terms of the team panicking.
“Well, the panic level has been there since the start of the preseason. Everyone’s kind of been on edge all year. We’ve been playing well lately, so it’s kind of eased the pain a bit. [The game against the Clippers] doesn’t help, but we’ll come back.”
We are spoiled here in Los Angeles. The Lakers expect to win every year and after the two seasons that the team didn’t win championships, there was much pressure for the Lakers to win after the team acquired Steve Nash and then acquired Dwight Howard. And after Mike Brown got axed as head coach, the pressure to perform got even higher.
Kobe was then asked about taking a break from this season and then fixing the season when they come back (cue some more terrible “starting the season over” jokes).
“Like hit the reset button? We can hit the reset button and hopefully there’s an ‘Easy’ button like in the [Staples] commercials. Hopefully, we can come back for the second half of the season and things are a bit easier for us.”
Whether or not GM Mitch Kupchak makes any moves (he said he wouldn’t), they just have to play better. Dwight Howard said that they have to be on the same page but it takes more than just talking about it. Coach Mike D’Antoni has to play to his players’ strengths. Howard has to look like he cares (and actually hustle out there). Kobe has to find the right balance of facilitating and shooting. Steve Nash has to do the same. And, overall, they have to find the chemistry that had been lacking all season. Yes, it takes time but time is not their friend at this point.
Kobe Bryant will be starting this Sunday at the All-Star game.