Stephen A. Smith attributes LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers’ wins against the Phoenix Suns to Chris Paul’s lingering shoulder injury.
It is quite unfortunate that the Phoenix Suns made their return to the postseason after a near 11-year drought and were matched up against the Los Angeles Lakers in merely the first round. Going up against the defending champs is no easy task for any team but it seemed as though the Suns could give LeBron James and co a run for their money.
The injury bug however, struck the Suns’ floor general yet again in the Playoffs as Chris Paul is clearly hobbled by a lingering shoulder injury he sustained in Game 1. Despite the injury, Devin Booker and DeAndre Ayton helped carry the load off CP3’s back and led the Suns to a surprising win at home. It should also be noted that Anthony Davis and LeBron James had one of their worst combined games of the season in Game 1.
Once games 2 and 3 came rolling around; LeBron and AD looked like their regular selves and went on to win both the bouts while Chris Paul was on the mend for a majority of the game. The time he did spend on the court was riddled with clear signs that he could not raise his shoulder to get into any sort of shot.
Stephen A. Smith believes LeBron James and the Lakers are lucky that the Suns don’t have a healthy Chris Paul.
Postseason disappointment stemming from horribly-timed injuries in said postseasons are what define Chris Paul’s Playoff success. It feels as though every time a CP3 led team gets close to being legitimate title contenders, the point god’s health gets comprised. Whether it was his hamstring with the Clippers and Rockets or a fractured hand, Paul has had some of the worst injury luck in recent history.
Stephen A. Smith highlights this in his newest segment on Stephen A’s World and claims that the Lakers are essentially getting off ‘scott free’ due to All-NBA guard’s lingering shoulder injury. He also talks about the fact that LeBron James’s luck has been on his side as of late, in relation to his 34-foot bomb to beat the Warriors in the play-in.
At least fir right now, the @ Lakers are one lucky team! pic.twitter.com/bEFZpQcNcM
— Stephen A Smith (@stephenasmith) May 28, 2021
Unfortunately for the Phoenix Suns, Stephen A is right. Without Chris Paul, the Suns are essentially what they were in the 2019-20 season but with Jae Crowder. For Kevin O’Connor’s ‘bright-now’ Suns to have any chance of getting back into this series, Chris Paul needs to be his regular season self.