ATLANTA – The Los Angeles Lakers ended the All-Star break on Tuesday, dropping below .500 for the first time since November 7 after 117-113 loss to the Atlanta Hawks.
At 28-29, The Lakers are 2.5 games back to the Sacramento Kings for the final playoff spot at the Western Conference. For James, this is the latest in a season that his team has a sub-.500 record since the Cleveland Cavaliers finished his rookie season 35-47 in 2003-04.
If the Lakers want to stay in Anthony Davis The NBA says Tuesday that the Lakers president Magic Johnson does not violate any elimination rules after back-and-forth on Monday if Los Angeles has reached about the Philadelphia 76ers point guard Ben Simmons.
"This is a tough loss for us," James says. "We have no consistent play from all the facets of the game. Offensively and defensively, we've jacked up a lot of coverages to start the game. In the third quarter we've jacked up a lot of our coverages again. we have to do it better. We need to be better. "
LA allowed the Hawks, now 19 games under .500, to reach 65 points in the first half and runs out as much as 10. The loss Tuesday came after the Lakers allowed the Philadelphia 76ers to score 76 points in the first half to a Final defeat of 143-120 Sundays.
Point guard Rajon Rondo helps defending the Lakers, saying that they need to "try together to find a way to stop."
"We've given a lot of points but many games – eight to 10 games – and it's just a shootout, and we did not win many of the shootouts," Rondo said. "So we need to find a way to get the rest dynamic as defensively to stop."
Lakers coach Lucas Walton said he wants his team to use the break to reset themselves mentally and physically and make a keen run to retake time when they return.
"Back to re-energized with the idea of, try to make something special," Walton said. "Let's sacrifice, let's go out and give for the team. … That's why I've asked guys to breathe a little over the weekend. I know everyone has family and events, but they spend some time by yourself, and as I said, I think we have a team that will be ready to go when we come back. "
James is leaving the country for a short vacation, sources said ESPN , before going to Charlotte to play his 15th straight All-Star Game, leading Team LeBron against Team Giannis.
"You decompressed and left the game a little," he said. "Guys will have more time than I do, obviously I'll take it back in two days But then get fresh, get your minds right, get your body right Back to the notion that we will play playoffs. "
Kyle Kuzma will participate in the MTN DEW ICE Rising Stars game Friday and the Taco Bell Skills Challenge on Saturday. The Lonzo Ball was also selected to play for Team U.S. in the game of the Rising Stars but is suffering from an abscess ankle.
"We just need a fun game," Kuzma says. "We just remember why we started playing this game, playing for fun, not as a business and not getting too much stress in the court. I think the All-Star break will be really good for us, especially to get a blow to everyone, and recharge, and get back to a new sense of focus. "
Tuesday is the third losing of the Lakers in the last 19 games against one of the league's cellar residents, combining defeat at Cleveland Cavaliers 12-45 and 10-45 New York Knicks.
James asked if his team brought the proper feeling of urgent night-time.
"A little sense of urgency in every game, how important every game is, when guys never play a playoff run before, so you can not point out to them that, but it's very important understand how important each game is, no matter who plays and where you are, "he says.
James was asked if some players had been studying at the thought of having a break coming.
"That's a possibility," he said.
However, everything is not lost. James made the rounds in the locker room wishing his teammates were good before releasing a few bottles of wine pulling for his flight to some distant destination.
"It's time for us to go away and show a little bit about where we are a group," Walton said. "I think the first part of this season, we've experienced a lot of difficulty as a group, and, you know, maybe we're not where we want to be, but we're still in. It's a challenge ahead of us back then of All-Star, and we have some work to do But I think we have a group up for that challenge, and we hope to attack that when we come back after that "
Rondo remained steadfast in his belief in his team.
"I have no concern," he said.
And James's final line of 28 points, 16 assists and 11 rebounds in the notch The 78th triple-double of his career, which he tore to Wilt Chamberlain for the fifth most all-time, was fast to be forgotten.
"At the end of the day we lost a game of the ball," said James. "I do not care what I did at one time, I can not worry if I did not win ball games. That's all, so I can throw that game out of the trash."