Lakers Legend Magic Johnson Explains What Led to Their Disappointing Loss Against Warriors on Opening Night

Published 10/21/2021, 10:30 AM EDT
Oct 19, 2021; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (6) dunks a ball during the second half of the NBA game against the Golden State Warriors at Staples Center. The Warriors won 121-114. Mandatory Credit: Kiyoshi Mio-USA TODAY Sports


Looking back to December 2020, when the Golden State Warriors played the Brooklyn Nets last season’s opening night, they faced a humiliating 125-99 defeat. But ever since the preseason, the Warriors have done nothing but grab victories. Not only did they go undefeated in all five games of the preseason, but they also started the 2021-22 regular season with an even bigger victory against the Los Angeles Lakers.

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However, unlike the Dubs, the Lakers have gone through significant changes this offseason. This only means they need some time to get their chemistry right. And who better than their franchise legend, Magic Johnson, to guide them into making that happen.

Magic Johnson gives vital advice to the Lakers

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The Los Angeles Lakers losing to the Golden State Warriors did come as a surprise, despite their disappointing games in the preseason. This is because they started off pretty well, and it was only in the fourth quarter that they let it all slip. They were leading most of the game, but the Dubs caught up brilliantly in the fourth quarter. And that’s all they needed to finish it at a score of 121-114.

Looking at this, Magic Johnson had some advice to impart. He said, “First of all, patience, number one. Number two, we got to remember what happened last night. For three quarters, the Lakers played pretty good. LeBron and AD play like the superstars that they are. They just didn’t get the help, right?” 

He agreed that the Warriors took advantage of the last quarter and played faster than them. “Westbrook struggled because he was in first gear, the whole game. To me, LeBron played faster than Russell did. He’s got to play fast to be effective. And I think he was nervous. First game in the  Laker uniform, a young man from LA…” Magic further stated.

WATCH THIS STORY: Steph Curry’s Failed Dunk, LeBron James’ Evergreen Jump Shots, and Other Top Highlights From Warriors’ Opening Night Win vs Lakers

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What makes Russell Westbrook their trump card?

Oct 12, 2021; Los Angeles, California, USA; Golden State Warriors guard Damion Lee (1) drives against Los Angeles Lakers guard Russell Westbrook (0) during the second quarter at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Kiyoshi Mio-USA TODAY Sports

However, if the Lakers want to win, Russell Westbrook will be the key to that. Magic further explained that his other two superstars will need his contribution on the scoreboard. But that doesn’t mean that the Warriors shouldn’t get credit for pulling off that win.

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With Stephen Curry benched in the fourth, their bench squad really outshined the rest, especially Jordan Poole. Imagine what will happen once Klay Thompson and James Wiseman get back? They will definitely become one of the teams, including the Lakers, to look out for as championship contenders. Provided the Lakers pull themselves together.

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Yashima Bhatia

1710 articles

Yashima Bhatia is an NBA writer for EssentiallySports who specialises in providing nuanced predictions and updates for matches. She has a Bachelor's degree in journalism and mass communication. Yashima's love for playing the game came up at a young age, when the excitement of the games coupled with the intensity of the Playoffs had her hooked.

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