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NBA - US Sports: Lakers have no room for error

LeBron James accepts Los Angeles Lakers need to find a way to end their slump if they are to cling on to a play-in place ahead of the visit of Washington Wizards on Friday.

The Lakers are 20/23 to win with a -4 handicap in the Point Spread, while the Wizards can be backed at 167/100 in the Money Line.

Defeats keep racking up

The Lakers have six defeats in their last seven games and slipped to a demoralising overtime defeat at Houston Rockets, who have the worst record in the Western Conference, in their last outing.

James recorded a triple-double at Houston with 23 points, 14 rebounds and 12 assists - but he needed 26 shots to get those points and missed eight of his nine three-pointer attempts.

The Lakers' one win in their last seven games came against a Golden State Warriors outfit who look genuine contenders for the championship and it is clear there is a real sense of frustration within the team's locker room.

Lakers are capable of better

The LA outfit are capable of competing with the league's best when they are on form, but they have been unable to string together a consistent run of results and have a 28-37 overall record.

A top-six spot and an automatic place in the play-offs already looks out of reach for the Lakers and they could find themselves outside of the play-in places if they cannot halt their slide.

The 2020 champions sit ninth in the West and are just three games ahead of Portland Trail Blazers in 11th ahead of Washington's visit.

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James is under no illusions regarding the task in hand and he knows his team need to find their rhythm and hit some form soon or risk an early end to the season.

"We just don't have a lot of room for error," James said, via Sportsnaut. "When we make a mistake, or we break down defensively, or we don't get a good look at the basket, teams are literally making us pay every time.

"We're not getting away with things and it's just that simple."

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