Christian Wood Has Bold Take On Lakers’ Potential

Christian Wood, Cade Cunningham, Lakers, NBA
Feb 13, 2024; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward Christian Wood (35) blocks a shot by Detroit Pistons guard Cade Cunningham (2) in the second half at Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers are one of the hottest teams in the NBA as the league heads into its All-Star break. They have won three games in a row and six of their last seven, pushing their record to 30-26 on the season.

Unfortunately for the Lakers, the rest of the Western Conference is also on fire heading into the NBA All-Star Break. Despite their hot stretch, Los Angeles still resides in ninth place in the conference, 3.5 games behind the Phoenix Suns and New Orleans Pelicans, who are in fifth and sixth.

Last season, the Lakers made the playoffs through the NBA Play-In Tournament. If possible, that is something they would like to avoid this time around. Once the team returns from the All-Star break, their goals are clear; earn a top-six seed. Lakers’ big man Christian Wood believes that is achievable.

NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: Christian Wood & Los Angeles Lakers Updates

“I think we’re a top-six team,” he told reporters Tuesday. He explained he believes the Lakers can climb out of the Western Conference play-in tournament if they “come back with the attitude to try to stay consistent” following the break. (H/T Bleacher Report)

To avoid the Play-In Tournament, the Lakers have their work cut out for them. It is going to be a dogfight for the last spots safe from the tournament, as only 3.5 games separate five teams. You cannot count out the 10th-place Golden State Warriors, who are finding their stride as well.

Lower down the standings, the Utah Jazz and Houston Rockets still have a fighting chance to earn a spot in the NBA Play-In Tournament. Essentially, eight teams in the Western Conference are going to be jockeying for six spots.

NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: Christian Wood & Los Angeles Lakers Updates

It is hard to imagine many people are going to be betting against the Lakers in that scenario. As long as LeBron James and Anthony Davis are healthy they have proven capable of competing against any team in the NBA.

If the Lakers can get some positive injury luck and have players return to the court who have been absent, their odds improve that much more. Those additions can essentially count as deadline moves for Los Angeles, who didn’t make a trade but already added Spencer Dinwiddie on the buyout market.

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