The Los Angeles Lakers entered this season as one of the top teams to lift the 2021-22 NBA title. The team was +400 to win it all per DraftKings Sportsbook, good for second in the league behind the Brooklyn Nets. Fast forward to April and things have gone terribly wrong.
The Lakers are teetering on the brink of the play-in tournament, oscillating between 10th and 11th in the West as both the New Orleans Pelicans and San Antonio Spurs emerge as contenders to take the remaining spots. To make matters worse for LA, LeBron James and Anthony Davis are both on the mend with significant injuries. Two years after winning a title, the Lakers are in a bad spot this season and going forward.
For the 2021-22 season, the Lakers are currently +600 to make the playoffs and -1200 to miss them, per DraftKings Sportsbook. That’s a massive bet against LA at this point. Here’s LA’s remaining schedule as of Thursday, March 31.
April 1 update — The Lakers fell to the Jazz on Thursday night and remain tied with the San Antonio Spurs for 10th place in the Western Conference. The Spurs hold the tiebreaker over L.A., so if the season were to end today, the Lakers would be on the outside looking in for the play-in tournament. Right now on DKSB, the Lakers are +650 to make the postseason and -1200 to miss the playoffs.
Even if James and Davis do come back at 100 percent health, this is a rough final stretch for LA. The team might be able to fend off San Antonio for the final play-in tournament spot, but it’s hard to envision the Lakers winning back-to-back games in the bracket to make the postseason.