LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers in the offseason
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LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers in the offseason

During their opening night loss to the Denver Nuggets, LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers found themselves subjected to a rather harsh chant. While the glitz and glamour of banners and championships may have shone brightly, what the Nuggets truly relished was their spirited defense of their first NBA title. The final score read 119-107 in favor of the Nuggets, marking a memorable start to the NBA season.

“We shouldn’t dwell too much on last year,” remarked Jamal Murray after the Nuggets raised their championship banner and then proceeded to outplay the Lakers on the NBA’s opening night. This game showcased a remarkable triple-double performance by Nikola Jokic and LeBron James taking more breaks than usual.

LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers in the offseason

Throughout the offseason, both teams engaged in verbal sparring, particularly after the Nuggets swept the Lakers in the previous year’s Western Conference Finals. As the game approached its conclusion, Nuggets fans decided it was time to have some fun, erupting in boisterous “Who’s your daddy?” chants aimed at the Lakers in the closing minutes.

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The origins of this chant can be traced back to the Nuggets’ championship parade in June when Nuggets broadcaster Vic Lombardi humorously referred to head coach Michael Malone as the “Lakers’ daddy.” This quip did not sit well with Los Angeles, and Lakers coach Darvin Ham fired back, saying, “Oh, wow. You’re going to bring up Money Mike, man? The Lakers’ daddy? That’s what they call him now? The Lakers’ daddy?”

Jokic attributed the Nuggets’ strong performance to the emotions stirred by the pre-game ceremony, which propelled them to an early 18-point lead. This lead held steady, even as the Lakers clawed back to within three points in the fourth quarter.

Jokic contributed 29 points, 13 rebounds, and 11 assists, while Murray added 21 points, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope scored 20, Aaron Gordon had 15, and Michael Porter Jr. chipped in with 12.

In Los Angeles, all the starters scored in double figures, with LeBron James leading the way with 21 points in 29 minutes, as his playing time is being carefully managed in his 21st season.

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