LeBron James and Stephen Curry have had some tremendous playoff clashes over the years, although this postseason could be very different, with the possibility of the Golden State Warriors and Los Angeles Lakers facing off in the play-in tournament.
Curry delivered a meme-worthy response when asked about seeing the Lakers in a play-in matchup, just nodding his head for about 10 seconds straight.
Does Steph Curry think the league would enjoy a Warriors-Lakers 7v8 play-in matchup?
— Anthony Slater (@anthonyVslater) May 9, 2021
If the season were to end today, the Lakers would be the No. 7 seed and the Warriors would be No. 8, pairing them up for what the league has dubbed the “Seven-Eight Game.” Here’s the full explanation on the play-in tournament from NBA.com.
At the conclusion of the regular season but before the first round of the playoffs, the team with the 7th-highest winning percentage in each conference will host the team with the 8th-highest winning percentage in a Play-In Game (the “Seven-Eight Game”). The winner of the Seven-Eight Game in each conference will earn the No. 7 seed.
The team with the 9th-highest winning percentage in each conference will host the team with the 10th-highest winning percentage in the “Nine-Ten Game”. The loser of the Seven-Eight Game will host the winner of the Nine-Ten Game in a Play-In Game, and the winner of that game in each conference will earn the No. 8 seed.
Lakers Not Scared of Any Postseason Situation
While the Lakers would prefer to avoid the play-in game, the defending champs have been adamant that they’re not worried about any possible matchup they may see when the postseason begins.
“For me, I’m unafraid of the play-in tournament with this team,” Lakers head coach Frank Vogel said. “But we definitely want to finish in the top-six. There’s just too many things that can happen in a one-game series: foul trouble, a rolled ankle, anything like that could pop up. We definitely want to finish in the top-six, it’s high priority for us, but at the same time, I’m confident in our group.”
Injuries have plagued the Lakers this season, most notably to superstars Anthony Davis and LeBron James. Davis seems to be rounding into form, coming off his best performance of the season against Portland, scoring 36 points and grabbing 12 rebounds. James, however, is still staying off his ankle after returning to the lineup briefly. It’s clear that the four-time MVP is not a fan of being a part of the play-in tournament.
“It don’t matter where we land. That’s my mindset. If it happens to be sixth, or fifth, or whatever the case may be. Or if we end up in that playoff, whatever that thing is. Whoever came up with that s**t needs to be fired,” James said last week.
Kyle Kuzma Out For Lakers Against Phoenix Suns
The Lakers will be without another key player on Sunday against the Suns in a crucial matchup, with Kyle Kuzma out with lower back tightness.
— Duane Rankin (@DuaneRankin) May 9, 2021
He’ll join James and Jared Dudley on the sideline for the matchup. Alex Caruso (foot) and Talen Horton-Tucker (calf strain) are questionable, while Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Marc Gasol and Anthony Davis are all probable.
The Lakers are a 7.5-point underdog against the Suns, who are looking to take over the top spot in the Western Conference.
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