That’s according to former Boston Celtics man Paul Pierce.
The dilemma hanging in the air in Los Angeles is that the young players, including the likes of Lonzo Ball and Kyle Kuzma, are likely involved in the trade to bring Davis to the Lakers.
While the trade hasn’t happened yet, Pierce believes it’s going to be hard for them to take criticism from coach Luke Walton when they’re not performing well.
The future of Walton is also unclear, leaving Pierce to believe that the players are downing tools under his leadership.
Pierce, though, thinks the players need to prove the management wrong.
“I’de feel like I want to prove them wrong, I’d want to prove that I belong,” he told ESPN’s The Jump.
“It’s a tough situation for them and playing alongside LeBron who has a few years at the top.
“There’s a sense of urgency to get a deal [Anthony Davis to the Lakers] done, because they don’t want to waste LeBron’s chances to win a championship.
“I’m on edge if I’m a young player because he door is wide open for a trade, it’s a tough situation.”
Pierce went on to note that it would be herd for the players to take criticism from Walton because his future at the franchise isn’t secure.
“There’s tension between Luke Walton and the players because his footing isn’t secure.
“He doesn’t have the full buying of the management, Jeanie buss is making sure he’s still there.
“When the players smell that the coach isn’t secure, they don’t react to criticism.
“Luke doesn’t have security, he doesn’t have management or ownership backing.”
It now seems that the only way Walton can rid himself of animosity he’s experiencing, is for the Lakers to get a deal over the line with Davis.
A deal would send his frustrated players to New Orleans, while he has the rest of the season to deliver a play-off run with Davis and LeBron James as team-mates.