2021 has been a difficult year for the Lakers. Injuries to their star players have been and continue to be a major scenario for Purple and Gold. Their attempt to win back-to-back championships was a dismal failure. Sadly, Anthony Davis and LeBron James were far from healthy for the Lakers’ first-round playoff loss to the Phoenix Suns in the 2021 playoffs.
Sirius XM NBA radio named “Lakers 1st Round Exit” as the sixth greatest story of 2021 in their Top 10 stories of 2021. “Bucks Win NBA Championship” was number one with “Ben Simmons Situation” second.
Frank Isola and Mitch Lawrence of Sirius XM NBA Radio discussed the Lakers’ loss to the Suns in six games. Lawrence gave the Suns credit, but said James and Davis’ injuries have helped the Suns immensely.
“What ended up catching up with the Lakers was LeBron was injured, [he] injured his ankle at the end of the year and never fully recovered. Then, during the playoffs, Anthony Davis was seriously injured… Phoenix came back and won [the series], but that was helped by the two injuries from the Lakers’ main departures.
Davis, who was already nursing a sprained knee, missed Game 5 of the series with a groin injury. He tried unsuccessfully to oust him in Game 6 with Phoenix on the verge of dropping out. Davis recorded a total of 5 minutes and 25 seconds before retiring to the bench. The Suns won the series with a 113-100 victory.
Isola commented on some fans and pundits questioning LeBron James ‘abilities and the legitimacy of the Lakers’ 2020 Bubble Championship following the loss to the Suns.
“On December 30, 2021, he turned 37. We need to give the guy a little slack here. I can’t hit them for winning a championship when all the other teams had the opportunity to win a championship.
If the Lakers hope to win another championship, the first step is to bring the three superstars together on the field. Anthony Davis is currently sidelined with an MCL sprained left knee. It will be reassessed in mid-January.