LeBron James delivered flowers to Los Angeles Lakers backup big man Thomas Bryant after continuing his dominance in the absence of Anthony Davis. Bryant had 29 points and 14 rebounds in the Lakers’ 136-134 win over the Sacramento Kings on Saturday.
In that close game, Kobe played a key role at critical moments. His rebounding and overall effort on both ends of the floor proved decisive, helping the Lakers to their fifth win on the boards. The following is James’ evaluation of Kobe after the game (from the “Lakers Daily”):
“He’s making the most of his opportunities. He’s a hard worker, knows how to play and is probably one of the most skilled big men in the game.”
Thomas Bryant is averaging 17.2 points and 10.2 rebounds while shooting 68.1 percent from the field, including 55.0 percent from 3-point range in the past 13 games without Anthony Davis. The Lakers have an astonishing winning record, going 8-5 in that span.
He has excellent chemistry with the team’s primary playmakers, LeBron James and Russell Westbrook (similar to Davis). That’s critical to the Lakers’ success as they control the paint, even in the absence of AD.
LeBron James envisions frontcourt trio of him, Anthony Davis and Thomas Bryant
The appearance of Thomas Bryant anthony davis absence is a blessing in disguise los angeles lakers. The team desperately needs more frontcourt players. Darvin Ham had to play three and four guards earlier this season when AD was healthy.
it puts a lot of pressure LeBron James, who has played at the 4 for most of the season, and Davis has helped the team dominate the rebounds. However, with Bryant’s ability to space the floor, rebound and defend effectively, the Lakers could explore deploying a frontcourt lineup of James, Bryant and Davis.
James said after the win over the Kings that he envisions a frontcourt trio once AD returns.
“I’ve already envisioned what it would look like to have AD in the frontcourt, myself and Thomas.”
The Los Angeles Lakers have explored trading players like Myles Turner who could space the floor and play alongside LeBron James and Anthony Davis. However, the rise of Thomas Bryant has given them the luxury of holding onto their assets. There’s a decent sample size on how his skill set is compatible with the Lakers’ superstar duo.
It will be interesting to see if Darvin Ham changes his roster and explores putting Kobe alongside LeBron and AD once they return.