As one GM put it, the Lakers being on the verge of missing the playoffs proves that LeBron is "not good enough anymore to take four cadavers and get to the Finals", at least in the West.
There's no doubt that the very public pursuit of Davis hurt their chances in the end, and could do so moving forward, but trading LeBron James doesn't seem to be a productive way of turning the franchise around. The Lakers, who play the Bulls on Tuesday, are short-handed; Brandon Ingram (deep venous thrombosis in shoulder) and Lonzo Ball (ankle) are not returning this season.
The Los Angeles Lakers pay a visit to the Toronto Raptors at the Scotiabank Arena on Thursday night.
When reflecting on the Los Angeles Lakers' first season with LeBron James under contract, there is a vast array of different conclusions that are drawn.
"We've released what he's got going on, but I'm not going to get into all the details, " Walton said. I'm just happy that I'm going to be healthy.More news: Bettors backing Browns for SB after OBJ trade
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The Lakers go into Thursday as the No. 11 seed in the Western Conference with a 31-36 record.
Blood clots have affected several prominent athletes including Chris Bosh and Serena Williams in recent years.
What was once a promising outlook on a young roster being led by one of the game's greats has turned into James becoming the scapegoat for all of the Lakers' pitfalls this year. "Obviously, I would love for this team to be in the postseason. How do you go to the next free agent and say, 'We really want you, ' and have him believe you after you had the face of the league for six months and then traded him away?" Ingram playing well and subsequently being forced to sit the remainder of the season, Ball not recovering properly leading to him being shut down, Kuzma being hampered by ankle issues and James now on a minutes restriction. It is hard to fathom that a team would not give up more than that to bring a superstar of his caliber to their market. A Christmas Day victory over the Golden State Warriors further propelled the team with momentum heading into 2019.
The Lakers hope that Ball, 21, will be able to heal fully and have time to work on his game this offseason.