Charles Barkley takes a clear shot at LA Lakers ownership for "not doing their job" and deploying "geezers": "What they're putting around LeBron is an embarrassment"

Charles Barkley takes a clear shot at LA Lakers ownership for "not doing their job" and deploying "geezers": "What they're putting around LeBron is an embarrassment"

Updated: 5 months, 10 days, 18 hours, 21 minutes, 14 seconds ago

Former NBA MVP Charles Barkley sounded off on the LA Lakers' failure to surround LeBron James with a competitive roster in the last two years. Barkley's comments came after the Lakers lost their first home game of the season against their cross-town rivals, the LA Clippers.

During the post-game show on TNT's Inside the NBA show, Barkley said (via NBA on TNT):

"Last year, and this year, what they're putting around LeBron is an embarrassment. Last year they put all them geezers around him, and what they got there around him right now, somebody's not doing their job in LA, period."

LeBron James averaged 30.3 points per game last season. Despite his efforts, the Lakers finished with a 33-49 record, missing the play-in tournament and, subsequently, the playoffs. The Lakers were the oldest roster in the NBA. They didn't have the personnel to produce a good balance on both ends of the floor, especially defensively.

The LA Lakers tried to improve in that area this offseason. They have acquired young wings that are solid defensively. However, the Lakers have again failed to add personnel who can shoot the ball well from deep. LA has to rely on LeBron James and Anthony Davis for offensive production, which isn't viable for them to win at a high level.


Lack of support around LeBron James and Anthony Davis leads LA Lakers to a loss against LA Clippers

The LA Lakers lost 103-97 against the LA Clippers, extending their losing streak against their cross-town rivals to seven games. Lonnie Walker IV was the only player to get going offensively for the Lakers apart from LeBron James and Anthony Davis.

Walker registered a game-high 26 points, Davis had 25, and James recorded 20. The rest of the roster could only tally a combined 26 points, shooting a dismal 8-of-40 from the field. Russell Westbrook and Kendrick Nunn didn't make a shot, while Patrick Beverley went 1-of-7.

The Lakers put up a valiant effort defensively, twice coming back from a double-digit deficit. However, the lack of support and shooting around LeBron James and Anthony Davis haunted them again.


The LA Lakers have shot a dismal 19-of-89 from the floor across their two opening games. Fans and analysts have criticized GM Rob Pelinka for not addressing the Lakers' shooting woes this offseason by balking at several trade opportunities that could've helped them on that front.

The Lakers proved they could be a good defensive team, work on building their habits and play with intensity. If they add personnel via trade, the Lakers could compete with the best in the Western Conference.

LeBron James didn't hold back about the LA Lakers' shooting woes after their opening night loss against the Golden State Warriors. The onus is on Rob Pelinka and the front office to get a deal done at any cost. Their championship window with LeBron at the helm is closing, so the Lakers will have to bring in reinforcements soon.

What options do the LA Lakers have in the trade market?

The LA Lakers have engaged in trade talks all summer with rebuilding teams like the Utah Jazz and Indiana Pacers. These are the few teams willing to take on Russell Westbrook's expiring salary for veteran contributing role players.

However, they want the Lakers' 2027 and 2029 first-round picks. Rob Pelinka told reporters on media day that the Lakers are willing to build a strong team around LeBron James, even if it comes down to trading those picks.

However, he indicated they would be patient as they don't have any other draft assets outside of that to trade for the rest of the decade. The Lakers have shown promise in every area except their shooting, and this might be the ideal time for Pelinka to pull the trigger.


The trade with the Pacers, which would help the Lakers land Myles Turner and Buddy Hield, seems like the ideal deal for LA to pursue. Turner would add size to their frontcourt, a rim-protection threat and stretch the floor with his 3-point shooting abilities. Meanwhile, Hield could come in as the best shooter from deep on the Lakers' roster. He is a 39.8% career 3-point shooter.

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Edited by Arhaan Raje