3. The Los Angeles Lakers have the firepower to make some noise
Let’s get this out of the way: preseason wins mean absolutely nothing. Half of the game is played with guys off the bench and even when the starters are on the court, it is more about finding out what works and what doesn’t work more than it is winning games.
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However, these games are not complete throwaways. Unlike the NFL preseason, which has virtually no starters play more than one drive, the NBA preseason can tell us something. Like Spring Training for the MLB, the starting guys on the team get enough time on the court to send a message.
After watching the Lakers defeat the Warriors I think it is safe to say that the Lakers have the firepower to be much more successful than anyone had anticipated. Anyone can beat the Warriors in just one game and that is even truer in the preseason.
But still, the Lakers looked really good. Los Angeles was carried by a fantastic third quarter, something that the Warriors have made a key part of their game plan to win games.
When the starting guys were on the court together it looked great for the Lakers. LeBron James and Lonzo Ball thrived together, Brandon Ingram looked ready to be elite and Kyle Kuzma looked to pick up right where last season left off.
This was the first preseason game that at least meant something for the Lakers and you could see how that really made a difference in the way the Lakers played. They were fast and they can score a ton. In today’s NBA, that is enough to give the Warriors, Rockets and Thunder a run for their money in the Western Conference.
I still think the Warriors are the clear-cut favorites to win the NBA Championship and I still think the Lakers could not beat them in a seven-game playoff series. However, after Wednesday, they are much closer to doing so than I previously thought.