Los Angeles Notes: Westbrook, Slow Starts, Lue

Lakers star Russell Westbrook isn’t concerned by his team’s sluggish start to the season, Dave McMenamin of ESPN.com writes. Los Angeles has opened the campaign with two straight losses, including a home game against Phoenix on Friday in which the team trailed by as many as 32 points.

“I’m OK with adversity, honestly,” Westbrook said. “I never panic throughout the course of a season. Especially at the start of the season. There’s really no need to. The season is too long and nobody is winning nothing right now.

“Yes, it’s good to get off to a good start and feel good about yourself, but especially me personally, I like to make sure that I’m — as the season goes on — I’m constantly just getting better and better and better as the season prolongs. And making sure that my team and my teammates are getting better as well as we all get comfortable with each other.”

The Lakers traded for Westbrook this past offseason, forming a new big three alongside LeBron James and Anthony Davis. Los Angeles also signed veterans such as Carmelo Anthony, Trevor Ariza, Rajon Rondo and Dwight Howard, adding more experience to the team.

There’s more out of Los Angeles tonight:

  • Speaking of a slow start, Clippers coach Tyronn Lue expected that the same would happen for his team, Andrew Greif of The Los Angeles Times writes. The Clippers are also 0-2, dropping contests to the Warriors and Grizzlies. The team will host Portland on Monday and Cleveland on Wednesday. “Our first unit has to do a better job of setting the tone defensively, having a defensive mindset,” Lue said. “I don’t think we’re there right now, we’re not there yet. But it’s coming. And with guys being out for most of preseason and in and out, that’s to be expected. But we got to have the mindset and approach that we want to get stops coming out of the first and third quarter.”
  • The Lakers are beginning the process of evaluating their own problems, Dan Woike of the Los Angeles Times writes. The team has dealt with various chemistry, injury and defensive issues to start the campaign, but 80 games are left to address said issues before the postseason.
  • Be sure to check out our team pages on the Lakers and Clippers for more on Los Angeles’ two teams.
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