The Los Angeles Lakers dropped another winnable game on March 17, as they fell to defeat against the Dallas Mavericks, courtesy of a last-gasp shot from Maxi Kleber.
Following the contest, Kelber was asked about his game-winner during a post-game press conference, where he detailed what he saw from the Lakers’ defense in the final few seconds of play.
“I saw Kyrie getting double-teamed,” Kleber said. “When he kind of moved away from me, I looked up at the shot clock and saw there was like 2.5 seconds or something. He turned back around, couldn’t get a shot off. So, when he passed that, I knew I had to just quick fire it, and that’s basically what I did.”
With their latest defeat, the Lakers currently sit 10th in the Western Conference, tied with the Utah Jazz, who sit in 11th, and once again find themselves in danger of slipping out of playoff contention.
Kyrie Irving Name Drops Anthony Davis
Kyrie Irving has been a name on Lakers fan’s lips for almost a year, however, today, they will be speaking about him for a different reason, as the superstar guard dropped 38 points against the purple and gold on 60.9% shooting from the field and 55.6% from deep.
When speaking to the media following the Mavericks’ win, Kyrie noted how he believed Anthony Davis was over-helping on the defensive end during the final possession of the game, which allowed him to make a read for Maxi Kleber.
“It seemed like three of them were around me at the end of the game,” Irving said. “But I’m just grateful that I was able to have my head on the swivel. I thought about, for a split second, forcing that two up to tie the basketball game. But I saw Maxi open. I saw AD kind of helping a little too much. So, I tried to get it into his shot pocket, and I’m glad I got it to him with enough time to at least get the shot off. I could easily be sitting in this position with a loss. It was just that type of game. But I’m glad we were resilient. We got really lucky and fortunate at the end of regulation tonight, so I’m glad it worked out for us.”
Davis, who had missed the Lakers’ previous game against the Houston Rockets was his usual dominant self, finishing the game with 26 points and 10 rebounds on 64.3% shooting from the field.
Lakers Urged to Explore Trading Anthony Davis
There’s no denying that Davis is a superstar talent in the NBA. However, his inability to remain healthy has been a significant stumbling block for the Lakers over the past few years.
According to Bleacher Report’s Zach Buckley, the Lakers should consider testing the interest in Davis once the trade market re-opens after the current season reaches its conclusion.
“Since James has encountered his own injury issues—which are unlikely to decrease with age—the Lakers might want more stability out of their second star.” Buckley wrote. “If they don’t trust Davis to provide it, they owe it to themselves to see how rich his trade market is. If a desperate team would pay a fortune for him, this front office would at least need to give it some thought.”
Davis has participated in just 45 games for the Lakers this season, and it’s likely that he will miss more before the Lakers head off on their holidays in the summer. The Lakers will be back in action on Sunday, March 19, when they face the Orlando Magic.