The Lakers might have kicked off their 2021-22 season with a rocky 3-3 record, but they've posted a superior winning percentage where it matters most: having kick-ass Halloween costumes.
Ahead of tonight's contest against the Houston Rockets (at 7:30 p.m. PT), Los Angeles players mostly got their seasonal kicks in last night with some elaborate outfits. Let's unpack some of the great attire busted out to commemorate the spooky season.
All-Star Lakers forward LeBron James is a known fan of horror movies, as his recent cinematic serial killer leg tattoo can attest. In the past, he has dressed up as Pennywise the Clown. With the exception of last year, when the COVID-19 pandemic effectively killed Halloween (temporarily), LeBron always seems to goes all-out with his costumes. Most recently to this point, LeBron dressed up as Edward Scissorhands with an incredibly detailed outfit.
So what did he do for Halloween 2021?
He went as Freddy Krueger (Robert Englund), of course, with a really high-level multi-piece burn prosthesis and an artfully aged hat, to go along with the requisite striped shirt and clawed gloves. And he wasn't slaying alone.
An Instagram Story indicated that LeBron was partying with All-Star teammates Anthony Davis and Russell Westbrook. Davis wore a full mask and costume as Tony Todd's Candyman. Davis gets bonus points for coordinating a tandem outfit. His wife Marlen went full-goth as Bloody Mary.
So who was Russell Westbrook this year? He went full Chucky (Brad Dourif), of course. Based on his scarring and stitches, this looks like the Bride of Chucky (1998)-era incarnation of the murderous cursed kiddie toy.
Westbrook also gets bonus points for coordinating his outfit with wife Nina, who dressed up as Chucky's main squeeze Tiffany (Jennifer Tilly), first introduced in Bride, the fourth installment of the still-stabbing horror comedy franchise.
Lakers starting shooting guard Kent Bazemore, who at press time had not yet revealed his Halloween outfit to the public, enjoyed the couple's commitment to the cause, posting "Crazy ass 😂😂😂" in response.
Here's the Instagram story of the Lakers' star trio, partying as serial killers in the spirt of the season:
In a move sure to raise some eyebrows, new Laker Carmelo Anthony dressed up as The Front Man (Lee Byung-hun) from Netflix's Squid Game, just a week after his teammate LeBron took umbrage with the series and its creator responded in kind. The backup forward's thorough costume looks like it was professionally photographed to be posted on his Instagram page:
The fifth likely Hall of Famer on the Lakers roster, backup center Dwight Howard (who should probably be starting ahead of DeAndre Jordan, if Anthony Davis remains unwilling to shift up a position), always goes HAM for All Hallows' Eve. As you'll probably recall, Dwight memorably stole the show during the Lakers' 2019 Halloween costume party, wearing high-level makeup, including a fat suit, to portray Rasputia Latimore, one of the several Eddie Murphy characters in Norbit (2007). What did he do for an encore this year? He went sufficiently retro, wearing a head-to-toe recreation of the outfit for the classic martial arts comedy The Last Dragon (1985) villain Sho'nuff (Julius Carry):
Returning reserve point guard Rajon Rondo clearly understood the assignment, wearing an incredibly-detailed Wolverine costume. Rondo wore some excellent faux facial hair to complete the look. Rondo's wife Ashley Bachelor dressed up as Wolverine's fellow X-Men mutant hero, Storm. She nailed the suit, right down to some lightning-summoning contacts:
Rondo was a four-time All-Star while with the Boston Celtics, but an ACL tear in 2013 permanently altered his career trajectory. Along with the four All-Star turns, he has also been a four-time All-Defensive Team member, a one-time All-NBA honoree, and a crucial role player for two champion teams (the 2008 Celtics and more importantly the 2020 Lakers), while appearing in three Finals to date. Are those credentials Hall of Fame-worthy? Possibly. What we know for sure, though, is that his outfit this year certainly is an all-timer.
The Lakers' other former All-Star on a veteran's minimum deal, DeAndre Jordan, spent the evening appreciating the grooves of a Dead and Co. show, according to his Instagram Story.
Injured Lakers combo guard Kendrick Nunn is one of the few players not on a minimum salary next to the club's "Big Three" of LeBron, Russ, and AD, alongside fellow guard Talen Horton-Tucker. Nunn wore an effectively spooky goblin/troll creature mask, alongside a spooky Baba Yaga hood, a pseudo-medieval green cloak, and a cleaver. Nunn's significant other dressed up as Aladdin (1992) heroine Princess Jasmine.
Like most of his Lakers colleagues this year, injured forward Trevor Ariza embraced the dark side too, playing the Heath Ledger-era iteration of The Joker from The Dark Knight (2008).
Every Laker who did dress up (again, as of press time), took full advantage of their Hollywood home, putting together pro-grade outfits.
Every Laker, that is, except one: injured shooting guard Wayne Ellington. Ellington and his family all wore decent rubber face masks for each Avenger, but there was a dearth of TLC put into developing any sort of costume for each character. Ellington wore a Hulk mask, his wife Safie Khaled wore a Black Panther mask, and their children dressed up as Spider-Man and Iron Man. The family dog celebrated the holiday in its birthday suit. The family coordination is cute, but considering what the rest of the Lakers roster did, one wishes they had built out the costumes: