Los Angeles Lakers forward Anthony Davis praised the Houston Rockets following Game 1 of their Western Conference semifinals series, insisting the Rockets are a good defensive team. The first-seeded Lakers struggled a lot in Game 1 as the Rockets won 112-97 to send a strong message to the team from Los Angeles.
Davis scored a team-high 25 points for the Lakers and grabbed 14 rebounds but that wasn't enough. "They're a good defensive team, especially since they've been here in the bubble. All their guys are like-sized, and they're able to switch everything, kind of how Golden State does.
Switch everything and then just cover each other," Davis said, per ESPN. "Our passing has to be a lot better than it was tonight, but we make the right plays and we can make them pay."
Davis didn't think the Rockets dominated the Lakers
"I don't think we were falling into their hands," Davis said.
"We were playing our style of basketball." LeBron James, a three-time NBA champion, thought the Lakers had to adjust to the speed of the Rockets after a Game 1 loss. James scored 20 points, grabbed eight rebounds and dished out seven assists.
"I think it's the speed," James said. "They play with a lot of speed both offensively and defensively. And you can watch it on film and you can see it on film; until you get out there and get a feel for it [you cannot comprehend it].
That's what we did tonight. We got a feel for their speed, and we should be fully aware of that going into Game 2." "How do you adjust to a team's speed? You understand that it's not just about the legs moving; it's about the hands moving, as well," said James, who had 20 points but went scoreless in the fourth quarter.
"They're great with their hands. You understand that if you have the turnover, you can't really react; you have to get back, quick twitch. Quick-twitch plays, because they're very, extremely fast." James also added the Lakers had to do a better job on the offensive side.
"Whoever is on the floor, we got to do a better job of executing," James said. "And EG [Eric Gordon] came in in the fourth quarter and sparked them on the offensive end. Getting to the line. Getting into the paint.
Making shots. And we didn't get any to fall for us. So we got to do a better job of that."