Tonight the Los Angeles Lakers play against the Oklahoma City Thunder in their first game back from the All-Star break. Check out our game recap:
The Lakers started the game with a lineup of D’Angelo Russell, Nick Young, Brandon Ingram, Julius Randle, and Tarik Black. The Thunder countered with Russell Westbrook, Andre Roberson, Alex Abrines, Domantas Sabonis, and Steven Adams.
Both teams started a little slow but then the Thunder then began to turn up the tempo and take an early 11-5 lead four minutes into the game. After a timeout, Ivica Zubac scored on two straight possessions to get Los Angeles some needed points.
As been the case the whole season the Lakers miscommunicated on the defense end that led with a alley top pass from Westbrook to Roberson. Abrines, who has 10 points so far, scored when he slashed toward the basket and Westbrook found him for an easy layup to put the Thunder ahead 20-15.
After a pair of free throws by Westbrook, Larry Nance Jr. responded with a long two-point jumper. A bad out of bounds play led to Russell stealing the ball and converting a difficult layup between two Thunder defenders to bring the Lakers within three points.
The Lakers offensive struggles showed when they had four opportunities in one possession and could not score. On the next ensuing possession for the Thunder, Roberson, who was left wide open, hit a three-pointer to extend the Oklahoma City lead to eight points.
The Lakers trail, 29-23, at the end of the first quarter.
The second quarter started out fast as both teams scored on their first few possessions. Jordan Clarkson scored five quick points for the Lakers to keep them within striking distance. The Thunder got some quick baskets of their own behind newly acquired player Taj Gibson and Doug McDermott.
Corey Brewer got his first basket as a Laker when Clarkson intercepted a pass and found an open Brewer for a slam-dunk to cut the Thunder lead to six points. A three-pointer by Clarkson and a Zubac midrange jumper brought within four points with seven minutes left in the quarter.
After Westbrook missed a layup, Los Angeles rushed down the court where Russell made a very difficult layup over a taller defender. Following a timeout, the Lakers turned the ball over that resulted in Westbrook converting an and-one play.
Ingram made a very difficult shot when he essentially double pump-faked and used the backboard to help the ball go in to cut the Thunder lead to four with fewer than two minutes remaining. But the Thunder responded on their next possession when Adams converted another and-one opportunity.
Before the quarter ended Westbrook drilled a long three-pointer to give shift the momentum back to the Thunder. Los Angeles trailed at halftime 58-51.
The Thunder scored two on their first two possessions of the quarter to extend their lead to 10 points. Russell got the Lakers on the board with a much-needed basket, but Abrines responded with two consecutive three-pointers for Oklahoma City.
A quick spurt by the Thunder extended their lead to 15 points that resulted in the Lakers calling a timeout. After a cutback by Roberson by the Thunder, Russell scored anther three-pointer for the Lakers.
Los Angeles called another timeout when Sabonis hit his first three-pointer to give the Thunder a 19-point lead, their largest of the game. After a basket by Randle, Sabonis scored another and-one when Westbrook found him under the basket for a layup.
With two minutes left to play. Westbrook found Enes Kanter under the basket for another open slam-dunk to put the Thunder ahead by 20 points. So far, the Lakers have given up 48 points in the paint. Zubac continued his good defensive play when he blocked a hook shot attempt by Kanter. Another steal by the Lakers led to an open layup by Clarkson to give the Lakers a small amount of momentum into the final quarter.
The Lakers trail, 86-70, at the end of the third quarter.
The Lakers started the quarter with a nice alley-oop from Luol Deng to Ingram that got some fans on their feet. After Zubac made one-of-two free throws, McDermott scored a long-range two-point shot. On the next possession, the Thunder turned the ball over that led to Deng scoring an easy layup to bring the Lakers within 13 points.
A Lakers turnover led to a Gibson slam dunk to put the Thunder back up 17 points. Randle notched a double-double for the game when he pushed the ball up the court and scored an easy layup to keep the Lakers within striking distance with less than six minutes in the quarter.
The Lakers got rewarded with their good defensive play when Clarkson found a trailing Russell who scored another layup that increased his point total to 25 points. After a basket by Westbrook, Russell missed his chance at an and-one opportunity by not making the free throw.
The Lakers lose to the Thunder, 110-93.
The Lakers were led by Russell’s 29 points and six assists. Westbrook finished with a routine thrill-double finishing with 17 points, 18 rebounds, and 17 assists. They try again on Sunday afternoon when they host the San Antonio Spurs.