The Los Angeles Lakers might still have some figuring out to do.
James (34 points on 13-of-23 shooting, 11 rebounds, five assists) and Davis (33 points on 15-of-26 shooting, 11 rebounds two assists) looked very much themselves on the court, but it wasn’t a good night for those hoping the Lakers’ revamped supporting cast would make them an NBA titan again.
No other Laker reached double digits in scoring, and all but two finished with as many personal fouls as field goals.
The Warriors certainly opened the door for the Lakers despite all those struggles. Stephen Curry, who is again expected to shoulder the load with Klay Thompson still working back from injury, finished shooting 5-of-21 from the field. He found other ways to contribute though, posting a triple-double with 21 points, 10 rebounds, 10 assists and three steals.
Big nights for Jordan Poole and Nemenja Bjelica helped the Warriors fight out of a 10-point hole late in the third quarter, but just as helpful was about as rough a debut as you could imagine from the Lakers’ ostensible third star.
Let’s just reel off Russell Westbrook’s numbers and discuss from there.
Eight point on 4-of-13 shooting, 0-for-4 from deep, no trips to the foul line, five rebounds, four assists, four turnovers, four personal fouls in 35 minutes. The Lakers were outscored by 23 points when he was on the floor. And he’s making $44 million this year.
It was just one game, but it was preceded by an equally rough preseason for the biggest acquisition for the Lakers’ offseason. There were plenty of questions about how Westbrook would affect the Lakers’ spacing, and this didn’t do much to quell them.
Westbrook will get a chance to shake it off on Tuesday in a playoff rematch against the Phoenix Suns.