Matt Barnes believes teams with younger talent don’t know why they should be afraid of the Lakers, resulting in the Suns beating them.
The Los Angeles Lakers, despite going through a roster revamp in the 2020 offseason to make them better on paper, have most certainly not looked like a team that’s ready to defend their championship. Though they started off the season with a solid MVP-esque season from LeBron James who was productive on both ends of the floor, their regular season would come crashing down along with both Anthony Davis and James.
The unpredictable nature of LeBron and AD’s injuries caused the Lakers to spiral out of control, to the bottom of the Playoff bracket. They were forced to work their way back up into the postseason through the play in tournament in a game that they nearly lost if it had not been for a LeBron James 34-foot bomb with under a minute left in regulation.
The banged up Lakers do not strike fear in the hearts of their opponents this season and understandably so. Seeing several weaknesses within the defending champions would make any team, regardless of their youth, believe that they have a shot at an upset.
Matt Barnes breaks down why the Suns don’t fear LeBron James and the Lakers.
“So, LeBron is probably going to play his way back into a rhythm and health. This is going to be a good series because I don’t think he’s there yet. It’s going to take AD to carry the load until LeBron is as good as he can be, before he’s back to normal.”
“These young teams are dangerous because they don’t know that they’re supposed to worry about the Lakers. They’re definitely not afraid; they came out and did what they were supposed to do and that was to protect the home court.”
More so than young players not knowing if they should worry about the Lakers, it’s the fact that the purple and gold have shown a couple of glaring weaknesses along the way to the Playoffs that have them intrigued. With Chris Paul at the helm, leading the young guys on the Suns, it’ll be interesting to see how Monty Williams tries to exploit these weaknesses in the 7 game series.