LeBron James and Lakers need to avenge previous humiliations against Denver Nuggets in playoffs, says Stephen A. Smith

The Lakers are currently on a eight game losing streak against the Nuggets.


LeBron James and Lakers need to avenge previous humiliations against Denver Nuggets in playoffs, says Stephen A. Smith

LeBron James against Nikola Jokic

The Los Angeles Lakers are set to face the defending champions, the Denver Nuggets, in a rematch of last season’s Western Conference Finals. The Nuggets swept the Lakers and continued their dominance in the recent regular season matchups. Stephen A. Smith, on “The First Take,” has challenged the Lakers to avenge their last eight humiliating losses against the Nuggets.

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Stephen A. Smith asserted that the Purple and Gold have what it takes to avoid another loss against the Denver Nuggets, led well by Nikola Jokic.

The giants are the Denver Nuggets. The reigning defending NBA champions, who, by the way, swept you last year four straight in the Western Conference Finals, who, by the way, have beaten you eight straight... When you got that going up against you, you rise up, and you like, 'I need to take this personal.' None of that hasnt worked, being calm hasn't worked, being even-keeled hasn't worked.
Stephen A. Smith said

Smith wants LeBron James to be more aggressive and allow trash talking to motivate him if he is to end the dominance of the Nuggets and become what he termed “the giant killer.” Furthermore, he cited instances where, in the last three outings, the Nuggets came along to ruin the mood for the Lakers, from their ring ceremony to the unveiling of the late Kobe Bryant statue to when James scored 40k points.

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However, things have changed, as the Lakers aren’t the same team that got swept away last time. The Lakers have a shot at upsetting the Giants thanks to tactical tweaks and changes made by coach Darvin Ham.

Stephen A. Smith would change his mind about LeBron James on one condition

To add stakes on the Nuggets win, Smith also has proposed an interesting offering. Smith, a die-hard Michael Jordan fan, suggested that his allegiance could switch to LeBron James if James leads the Lakers to victory over the Denver Nuggets and secures the 2024 NBA title.

I have said this on record on countless occasions that Michael Jordan is the greatest player of all time. I don't give a damn what anybody says, he is the absolute greatest. But I have to confess, if LeBron James beats Denver and marches forward to ultimately win another chip, I don't know how strong my argument is going to be on behalf of Jordan moving forward.
Stephen A. Smith via the First Take

While LeBron James has the opportunity to settle one of basketball’s most heated debates, he is currently focused solely on defeating the Nuggets and winning his fifth championship ring, albeit fewer than Michael Jordan’s six.

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Defeating the Nuggets would demonstrate Lakers’ intent and make them one of the favorites. However, the road to the title is more than just getting revenge over a nemesis, as there are many other challenging games along the way.

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