When this NBA season began, many Los Angeles Lakers fans were thinking they could go all the way.
Now a few months into the season, those fans aren’t thinking the same thing.
In fact, they’re now wondering if the team will even make it into the playoffs.
It’s true, the current worry isn’t that the Lakers won’t play in the Finals – it’s that they won’t even make it into the postseason.
The Lakers have a real, serious chance of missing the playoffs entirely and if they don’t do something soon, it’s a fate that’s all but guaranteed.
Far Away From The Finals
Let’s get this out of the way now: the Lakers will not be in the Finals.
They won’t play in the Western Conference Finals and they definitely won’t play in the NBA Finals.
Their track record is currently 24-27 and they are clinging to the ninth spot in the West.
51 games into the season, the Lakers are 24-27 and dropped to the 9th seed. The Big 3 has only played 16 games together. pic.twitter.com/kUF0ZSIMHu
— Bleed Purple and Gold (24-27 & 32-19) (@WorldChampsLAL) January 30, 2022
Be honest with yourself and you will admit that they’d have a hard time beating any other team in the top eight of the West.
And no one in their right mind would wager they could beat the Golden State Warriors, Phoenix Suns, or Memphis Grizzlies.
Their defense is still a mess and their offense has gotten sloppy and lacking.
Their best chances of winning a game these days are when they play against opponents who have bad nights, like when they took down the Utah Jazz a couple of weeks ago.
They’re just not a powerful team – and their problems are only getting worse with the absence of James.
King James Taken Down
The Lakers are in the midst of another period without James.
This time, the NBA legend is on the sidelines because of tightness in his knee.
As expected, the team absolutely flounders without James – they are 5-10 when he isn’t playing.
No one blames them for not being as good without James – after all, he really is one of the best players of all time.
But head coach Frank Vogel and the rest of the squad haven’t adjusted to life without James even though they should have seen it coming.
James is 37 years old and even though he’s the best 37-year-old to ever play in the NBA, he is still battling Father Time.
The Lakers should have had some plans in place to help the team without James but so far they haven’t.
Without James, betting on the Lakers is never a safe bet – even if they’re playing against a far worse team.
— The Action Network (@ActionNetworkHQ) February 1, 2022
So in the days – and possibly weeks – ahead without James, the team will likely only sink down further in the standings.
Therefore, it’s not crazy to ask if they’ll make the playoffs.
Honestly, if they keep playing like they have been chances are the Lakers will struggle to make the postseason.