With the playoffs being just a few short weeks away, the Los Angeles Lakers need to be at the top of their game. They struggled a ton at the start of the season, but their slew of trade deadline moves have put them in a much better position to make a big-time push.
They’ve been playing solid basketball since the deadline, and on Friday night, they took care of business against the Oklahoma City Thunder. After the game, Lakers star Anthony Davis had some high praise for Dennis Schroder.
“He plays with such a good passion,” Davis said via the NBA Interviews YouTube channel. “He’s energetic. That’s how he plays. Scrappy. He saved a fastbreak. Comes back down. Drew a foul, like you said. So, kind of another spark. Got the crowd into it. But that’s Dennis. That’s how he plays.”
With D’Angelo Russell sidelined, Schroder stepped into the starting lineup for the Lakers. He played very well in his role, filling up the stat sheet across the board. The Lakers point guard ended the night with 21 points, three rebounds, six assists, two steals, and one block on 8-of-14 shooting from the field and 2-of-4 shooting from behind the three-point line.
Meanwhile, Davis had a monster night against the Thunder, leading the Lakers in the scoring column. He finished the game with 37 points, 15 rebounds, one assist, and one steal on 15-of-21 shooting from the floor.
Anthony Davis Praises Lonnie Walker IV
In addition, Davis had some kind words for Lonnie Walker IV for their win over the Thunder. Walker came off the bench after not being in the rotation for a few games and played a huge role for the Lakers. Davis praised his professionalism.
“A true professional,” Davis said of Walker via the NBA Interviews YouTube channel. ‘All our guys, if they play or not, play a lot of minutes, start then go to the bench, start, they don’t play, [they have] good energy and good vibes no matter what. Cheering for their teammates. Lonnie goes in after games. If he don’t play, he goes to the gym, gets shots. Constantly staying ready. And I always say, ‘If y stay ready, you ain’t gotta get ready.’ So, he’s been locked in on his game when his number is called, and it was called tonight. And he stepped up and played well.”
Darvin Ham Shows Love to Lonnie Walker IV
Head coach Darvin Ham also showed love to Walker post-game.
“I would be remiss if I didn’t acknowledge Lonnie Walker,” Ham said via the NBA Interviews YouTube channel. “I said to the team sometimes, and it’s a reality of our business, you get some minutes cut short, or you don’t get to play at all, a lot of times, it’s through no fault of your own. It’s just circumstantial. And he’s the definition of what a pro is supposed to do at this level in terms of keeping himself ready. Putting that extra time in the gym, individually. Still watching film with the coaches. Still getting his rest. Still getting his proper nutrition. Keeping that great attitude, that great positive attitude that he has. And it showed tonight. He didn’t have to come out and worry about getting ready. He’s been staying ready. And if he doesn’t have that performance, we don’t win this game. It’s as simple as that. So, kudos to him, man, for being a pro’s pro.”