The Lakers May Have the Toughest Road to a Championship
The final reason as to why the Lakers fans should be concerned going into the playoffs is that the team has arguably the toughest road to the Finals compared to any other team in the league. While predicting the entire road to the Finals for the Lakers will not take into account any injuries or upsets, as it stands today they will be playing the Portland Trail Blazers in the first round, a second-round matchup against the Houston Rockets, a Western Conference Finals showdown against the Los Angles Clippers, and finally playing against the Milwaukee Bucks in the NBA Finals.
If the Lakers can pull this off it will likely be the most impressive and difficult Finals run that LeBron James has ever pulled off in his long and successful NBA career. Beginning with the first round, the Lakers would have to find a way to shut down and outscore Damian Lillard who has seemed unstoppable in the bubble, racking up 51 and 61 point performances.
The second round would leave the Lakers having to guard a backcourt of Russell Westbrook and James Harden and facing off against one of the most intriguing offenses in the league. With the Rockets not playing a center in the starting lineup, it will be very interesting to see if JaVale McGee will get any starting minutes in this series.
Moving onto the Western Conference Finals, it would be matching up to be a blood bath against the Clippers who have Kawhi Leonard and Paul George as their stars, a defensive hound of Patrick Beverley at the point guard position, along with two sixth man of the year finalists coming off of the deepest bench in the NBA.
If the Lakers can advance past the loaded Clippers team, they would likely be playing the Bucks who have the back to back MVP in Giannis Antetokounmpo as their star surrounded by one of the best three-point shooting teams in the league. This will be a very difficult path to the Finals for the Lakers being forced to beat two of the top three teams in the league in back to back playoff series. Despite the Lakers being the first seed in the West, they will still be facing quite a difficult road if they want to bring the title back to La La Land.