The Lakers were a house divided last season, especially following the mishap involving the team’s pursuit of Anthony Davis up to the trade deadline, but it was believed that those issues were in the past.
But maybe that’s not the case.
Los Angeles traded roughly half its players to New Orleans to acquire Davis — the same guys who sat on the opposite end of the bench from LeBron James during games late in the season. They were well aware that James, as well as his agent, Rich Paul, was attempting to work with the team’s front office to move them.
The Lakers then signed some veteran players to join the team, in pursuit of a championship win, and it was assumed that they’d just fall in line, with their eyes on the prize. But a cryptic comment by James in the past seemed to intimate there was some off-court chemistry issues going on. He attempted to walk back that take a bit, in speaking to reporters on Wednesday, shooting down talk of issues with chemistry or team camaraderie.
“I can just tell you this: It has nothing to do with our team,” James began. “One thing about our team, we have zero lack of team chemistry and camaraderie. That’s the one thing that our team will always strive and always be about. It’s a little bit more intricate than that. I might tell you when the cameras ain’t on. It has nothing to do with the Lakers and our group. Our group is probably as close as ever before because of the situation, even more since we’re here. So, Lake Show, Laker Nation, don’t worry about that. It has nothing to do with the ballclub. We’re great.”
They sure didn’t look great against the Blazers on Monday, especially down the stretch, when they outscored the Lakers, 19-6, en route to a 100-93 win.