Monday's loss to the Los Angeles Clippers may have been the final nail in their playoff coffin.
LeBron James and the Lakers have been off the boil in the last few weeks, losing out to the Grizzlies, Suns and the Clippers to put the franchise on the back foot with respect to their playoff chances. After the defeat the bet was taken off the board. The Los Angeles Clippers have split their last 10 road games.
Zion Williamson #1 of the Duke Blue Devils watches his team during the second half of their game at against the Wake Forest Demon Deacons Cameron Indoor Stadium on March 05, 2019 in Durham, North Carolina.
While the Lakers are ready to do everything possible to let LeBron feel at home and do things that he feels will bring about glory; it seems LeBron isn't putting that trust in the Lakers management.
The Lakers, in other words, would have to finish ahead of the Clippers to pip them to a playoff spot.
I went through CBS Sports' preseason win projections (courtesy of SportsLine Data Scientist Stephen Oh) for every National Basketball Association team and compared them to where each team stands right now. After opening the season sincerely telling everyone who would listen that he had "the best job in the league", Walton sounds now like a man trying to make the most of his last days.
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While the Clippers' playoff run is a pleasant surprise for their fans, the Lakers (30-34) dearly want to reach the postseason after a five-year absence. They have lost to the suspiciously tanking-like New York Knicks, James' old team, the Cleveland Cavaliers, and the Atlanta Hawks. Even with James returning from his groin injury, the team has struggled.
"You keep playing to the end and see what happens", James said.
"Well, I mean, that's a conversation that would probably be had between me and Luke [Walton]..."
After the Clippers loss on Monday, James wasn't as rosy. That is a positive development, but he was still going to undergo an MRI just to make sure.
"Continue to be a professional, and be as great as you can be every single night, no matter the circumstances". "Cause someone is always watching".
Floyd Mayweather was also spotted courtside on Monday night, wearing his usual TMT cap and a denim jacket.