The Los Angeles Lakers are off to a rocky start, dropping their first two games of the 2021-22 season. The Lakers are working through a massive adjustment period that has been quite evident through their lackluster play. However, it’s led Hall of Famer James Worthy to voice a stern message directed toward star big man Anthony Davis.
Lakers are off to a rough start to the season
The Lakers have hit an expected rough patch through the first two games of the season as the team continues to figure out its identity.
Los Angeles has stumbled behind the inconsistent play on both ends of the floor while dealing with injuries to key supporting cast talent. These issues came to the forefront in Friday’s lopsided home loss to the Phoenix Suns, as they struggled to keep pace throughout the contest.
The Suns shot 48.8% from the floor with 31 assists while holding a 52-26 edge with points in the paint. The Lakers showed an utter lack of continuity due to inexperience in their roster playing together.
Los Angeles’ early-season struggles haven’t created any sense of panic, but it’s led a Hall of Famer to deliver a firm message to Anthony Davis.
Lakers legend James Worthy sends stern message to Anthony Davis: ‘Needs to get damn nasty and do it every night’
Heading into the 2021-22 season, Davis voiced he was willing to take on a more significant role playing at the center position.
Hall of Famer James Worthy has been a massive advocate for that adjustment. He’s repeatedly stated the star big man is at his best when utilizing his unique skill set against opposing centers. After the Lakers’ loss on Friday night, Worthy voiced that he believes Davis must fully embrace dominating the paint.
“To me, I think he’s the guy,” Worthy said. “He’s our five. Nobody else is our five. is the guy that needs to go down in there, get damn nasty, and do it every night until teams can’t take it anymore.
“We know he can go out there and all that from 15 to 17 feet, but when you see the way you are being punked in the paint someone has to take care of that. He’s the guy that has to do it. It’s simple. It’s not difficult.”
Davis is a mismatch for opposing big men on both ends of the floor. When he’s taken up the responsibility of playing center, it’s guided the Lakers to sustained success. It played a significant part in the team’s dominant run through the 2020 playoffs.
It’s extremely early in the regular season, but Worthy’s comments further underline the importance of Davis’ play to the team’s success.
LeBron James says Lakers are embracing the adversity
As much as the Lakers want to push forward toward a promising start this season, the team is working through massive adjustments.
The busy offseason brought aboard many new faces that must work to find the necessary on-court chemistry. After Friday’s loss, James once again aired that much patience is needed.
“There’s a process along with building something to become the team you want to become, and I know it firsthand,” James said via the News Observer. “It doesn’t happen overnight, as much as you want it. It just takes time, and we’ll know when that time is. Right now, we’ve got to continue to just push.”
As the Lakers work through their adjustments, the team will continue to take their lumps along the way. It’s a matter of the roster staying the course with their commitment to the process.