LOS ANGELES — The Los Angeles Lakers have hit the primary true problem of their title protection, with Saturday’s 96-94 loss to the Miami Heat marking the third defeat of their previous 4 video games since Anthony Davis aggravated his Achilles tendinosis and suffered a calf pressure in his proper leg.A query for these Lakers has emerged: Does LeBron James must do extra to assist his teammates or do his teammates must do extra to assist James?”I really feel just like the final couple video games that is been taking place, placing so much on Bron,” Lakers guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope mentioned after the sport. “We already know what we will get out of him. So all the remainder of us, we have to proceed to only play onerous and simply play basketball and never fear about the rest.”James scored 19 factors on 7-for-21 capturing towards the Heat (together with simply 1-for-8 from 3-point vary), accounting for his worst capturing share of the season. He additionally coughed up a team-high 5 turnovers.James, after stealing an inbounds cross supposed for Jimmy Butler with 5.4 seconds left within the contest and establishing Alex Caruso for a possible game-tying shot that missed, insisted his teammates need not decide up any extra slack whereas Davis and place to begin guard Dennis Schroder are sidelined.”They are doing their half,” James mentioned. “They’re doing their half and extra.”No, James mentioned it is on him to guide L.A. out of the tough patch it is in, as he has completed for almost all of his 18-year profession with the Cleveland Cavaliers, the Heat and now the Lakers. Saturday’s loss dropped the defending champions to No. 3 within the Western Conference standings.”I believe that is what all of it boils all the way down to, and proper now could be one other problem for me, to have the ability to alter,” James mentioned. “Not having AD for an extended time period is one thing that we have not had over the past 12 months and a half, and now it is time for me to regulate once more and see methods I could be much more efficient to assist this crew win ballgames. Because that’s the sport that we’re in.”We’re within the successful enterprise, and I’ve all the time been a winner. So, it is time to click on into that.”James wasn’t the one one to battle capturing the ball towards Miami. The Lakers went 1-for-13 from 3-point vary within the fourth quarter and did not fare all that significantly better for the sport, hitting 13-of-45 makes an attempt (28.9%) from the skin.”We attempt to assist him out as a lot as attainable, and we need to do it as good as attainable, as we will,” mentioned Caldwell-Pope, certainly one of solely three Lakers to make extra photographs than he missed towards the Heat. “We attempt to assist him out, we strive to not make an excessive amount of errors once we’re on the ground with him and even operating a play with him, simply to provide him some assist. We do ask Bron for lots; he provides us so much each sport.”It’s as much as us so far as like position gamers and ‘subsequent man up’ mentality, we have to be prepared and locked in.”Caruso, who’s 10 years youthful than James, mentioned being aware of not burning out James in February with a championship run deliberate for the spring and early summer time is a “acutely aware factor” for his teammates.”I imply, LeBron is the most effective participant on our crew, and evening in and evening out you possibly can see consideration he will get as a result of he’s,” Caruso mentioned. “With the blokes that we bought out, groups are going to load up towards him. He has a terrific basketball thoughts, and he will do his half to get guys open to make nice performs.”For James, who rallied in help of his crew by saying, “Every time we’re on the ground, we’re all attempting to guard one another and convey one another up out on the ground each single evening,” there was one minor critique of a teammate he did share, nevertheless.Down by two factors with 1.4 seconds left within the sport, he mentioned he wished Caruso would have taken a few steps again to launch a 3 and go for the win.”I believe the one unhealthy factor about it’s that he shot an extended 2,” James mentioned of Caruso’s 22-foot shot that hit the entrance rim on the buzzer. “I want he would have shot a 3 and, make or miss, I’ll stay with that.”