Down seven points at halftime and already having lost four straight games, the Los Angeles Lakers needed some kind of spark to turn things around on Friday night against the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Thanks to Dennis Schroder, Montrezl Harrell and supreme effort on defense, the Lakers made sure that losing streak was no more.
The Lakers held the Cavaliers to just 35 points in the second half as the team got a much-needed 100-86 win over Cleveland to snap the four-game losing streak. The win keeps the Lakers in the fourth spot in the West at 29-17, just one game behind the L.A. Clippers for third.
Harrell led the Lakers with a double-double of 24 points and 10 rebounds, but it was Schroder who was the catalyst for the team in the second half. Schroder finished with 17 points, seven assists and four steals while also sparking the Lakers with his defensive effort.
The standout play of the third quarter his chase-down block on Cavaliers guard Darius Garland, and he added a between-the-legs assist to Harrell in the quarter as well.
The Lakers trailed 51-44 at half as things looked bleak before they turned it around by outscoring Cleveland 28-10 in the third.
Talen Horton-Tucker added 15 points, three assists and two steals off the bench while Markieff Morris chipped in 13 points as well. Kyle Kuzma, meanwhile, was focused on things other than scoring as he took just seven shots, scoring only four points, but added eight rebounds and seven assists.
The Lakers held Cleveland to just 38.8% shooting including 19.2% from 3-point range while also picking up 15 steals. L.A. also dominated inside, outscoring Cleveland 58-42 in the paint and forced 21 Cavaliers turnover overall.
If there was one big issue on the night it was the Lakers’ own inability to take care of the ball. Though they forced 21 from Cleveland, the Lakers actually outpaced them with 23 turnovers of their own. Seven Lakers players had at least two including all five starters. Schroder was the main culprit with seven while Morris added four of his own.
Wesley Matthews also finished with nine points and four rebounds while Alex Caruso had five points and four steals. Former Laker Larry Nance Jr. led the Cavaliers with 17 points, 10 rebounds and five assists against his former team.
Next up for the Lakers
The Lakers have two more home games before embarking on a seven-game road trip. First up is the Orlando Magic on Sunday night before a meeting with Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks on Wednesday.
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