The Los Angeles Lakers still have a lot of work to do in order to reach the NBA playoffs, but many believe that the team is dangerous enough to do some serious damage if it gets the chance.
“They believe they got a legitimate shot to take down Denver,” NBA insider Chris Haynes said. “They believe they got a legitimate shot to take down Memphis. I don’t know about Phoenix when K.D. (Kevin Durant) is healthy — I haven’t asked around on that front — but there’s no fear at all.”
All things considered, it sounds like there are lots of teams in the West that the Lakers think they can handle. The conference is entirely up for grabs with just a few weeks to go before the playoffs arrive.
The play-in race is heating up in the West. The Lakers do currently hold the No. 10 seed, but only by a hair. L.A. is 35-37 overall, and the team is still trying to get to .500 for the first time all season.
It’s certainly interesting to hear that the Lakers like their chances against the Nuggets and Grizzles. Denver has an MVP candidate in Nikola Jokic and lays claim to the best record in the West at 48-24.
The Grizzlies, meanwhile, also have a solid record at 43-27, but in some ways, they’ve had a rocky season due in large part to the controversies surrounding star guard Ja Morant.
Denver, Sacramento and Memphis are currently the three top teams in the West by record, and that will likely remain the case through the end of the regular season. If the Lakers make the playoffs, they’ll almost certainly face one of those three teams in the first round. Los Angeles apparently isn’t afraid of any of them.
But before the Lakers start looking ahead, they have a lot of business to handle in the regular season, starting with a game on Wednesday against the Phoenix Suns.