Lakers narrowly escape onslaught from 9-win team, fans react with splitting opinions

The LA Lakers emerged with a 134-131 overtime win over the Washington Wizards on Thursday. LeBron James and Anthony Davis had big games but the slumping visitors, which lost their 13th straight, stubbornly competed. LA had to play composed basketball behind its veterans to prevent an upset.

On Wednesday, James and Co. came out with an emotional 116-112 victory against their hallway rivals, the LA Clippers. For that reason, LA seemed quite lethargic for most of the game versus Washington. They didn’t have their usual energy and aggressiveness on both ends of the floor.

Jordan Poole, Kyle Kuzma and the young Wizards played without pressure and fear. Had they made a few key stops, they might have walked away with perhaps their biggest win of the season. LeBron James, however, refused to allow that by making crucial plays in overtime to drag LA to the victory.

Fans on X, formerly Twitter, promptly reacted to the Lakers barely outlasting the reeling Wizards:

“a dog fight against the Wizards”

“King James” and Davis were questionable leading into the game. They were eventually cleared to play for the host team. As expected, both put up impressive stat lines against Washington’s poor defense. The Lakers might have run away with the victory except that their level of play was somewhere around Washington’s as well.

Ham later told reporters that the schedule was tough for his team. He admitted that they were not as crisp in their execution as they were against the Clippers. Still, he gave credit to the Wizards for giving them a big fight.

Lakers will look to significantly improve ahead of Nuggets clash on Saturday

The LA Lakers can’t afford to play the same way and hope to beat the Denver Nuggets (41-19) on Saturday. Notably, the Purple and Gold are winless in two tries this season against their Western Conference nemesis. If they continue to be lethargic versus the defending champs, they might as well kiss their chances of winning goodbye.

Knowing his team had a subpar outing, coach Darvin Ham vowed to be more prepared and ready when they host Nikola Jokic and Co. in their next game. Denver is coming off a highly-contested win against the Miami Heat on Thursday. They will be raring to sweep the season series.

The Lakers have not won against the Denver Nuggets since Dec. 16, 2022. They have now lost seven straight games to the Mile High City team.

It will be interesting to see if the Lakers can recover in time and avoid losing to the defending champions once again this season.

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Edited by Michael Macasero

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