Kendrick Perkins, a former NBA player turned ESPN analyst, walks off the television during a live broadcast after sick of hearing about the Los Angeles Lakers. The LA Lakers have been a recurring topic on TV discussions, podcasts, and social media despite being sixteen games under +500 and not even qualifying for the play-in round. The purple and gold represent one of American sports’ most recognisable clubs with a long history. There were many whispers regarding a potential Kyrie-LeBron reunion in LA before he made the decision to go into the last year of his contract with the Nets for the next season.
Big Perk simply couldn’t take any more of the chatter about LeBron James and the Lakers because he had heard enough of it. LeBron James, who continues to be the league’s face, is another factor that contributes to the Lakers’ constant attention. The team’s lineup also includes Russell Westbrook, one of the most divisive superstars and a favourite of statisticians and internet trolls. The Lakers were one of the early favourites to win, but they had a terrible season, which made them a compelling topic for all media. Compared to other playoff teams like the Grizzlies and Timberwolves, the theatrics of the LA club attracted greater media attention.
Kendrick Perkins with the walk-off when discussed about the Lakers.
The amount of talk about the Lakers has gotten to the point that even TV commentators are getting tired of it. The most recent demonstration of this was when Kendrick Perkins staged a walkout during an edition of NBA Today on ESPN. The Lakers continue to generate media attention, whether it’s during the regular season, playoffs, or off-seasons. The most recent example is reports that Kyrie Irving will don the purple and gold to reconcile with his former Cavaliers colleague LeBron James. As things are likely to become heated, the Nets’ guard has sought a trade.
After winning the 2020 NBA championship, LeBron and the Lakers were at the top of the mountain and appeared to have a shot at at least one more championship in the upcoming seasons. The giants, though, have suffered severe setbacks since that tenuous triumph, and they haven’t advanced past the first round of the playoffs since. The Lakers’ championship squad only had four players left, and they even sacked the coach who led them to victory. They will need to significantly alter this poor roster if they are to improve their record by that many victories the next season.
It’s important to remember that Perkins and LeBron were once teammates. Towards the end of Big Perk’s career, Perkins and James were teammates with the Cleveland Cavaliers. Perkins has made it apparent that he respects his former teammate, but it is now obvious that he doesn’t even want to talk about the Lakers. The former Celtics champion has had enough of James and company. Perkins was done with the Lakers, despite Richard Jefferson’s amusing attempts to remind him that the buffet was open until 5:30.
If the Lakers stay healthy the next year and develop themselves back into a West contender, this season will be forgotten. To get back into the top half of the Western Conference, they would need to assemble a more capable roster, which is difficult to imagine even if they had fewer injuries the next season. The Lakers should have something good to offer their supporters going into the 2022–23 season following a disappointing year.