After earning a big win over the Denver Nuggets, the Los Angeles Lakers came crashing back down to earth after being thoroughly beaten down by the L.A. Clippers, 118-94, on Thursday night.
It was an ugly game the entire night as the shorthanded Lakers could not get anything going on either end of the floor. Offensively the team struggled to generate shots in the half-court, while defensively they allowed the Clippers to torch them from the perimeter.
One of the few bright moments was Markieff Morris nailing a 3-pointer as he had been in the midst of a massive drought, shooting 0-for-24 from deep in his last eight games.
Morris spoke on finally getting one to go, saying nothing felt unusual and that he will just need to get back in the gym in order to get back on track.
“It felt normal,” Morris said. “I watch film on all my shots and if I was missing bad then I would be like ‘there’s something going on,’ but s—, every shot I took has been in-and-out, literally damn near every one of them probably minus one last game. Other than that, they’re been in-and-out. Just big picture, man. You miss so much then it can only be up from there just like anything else.
“You go through those type of slumps in real life, not in just basketball. You try to get back to the basics, so me personally, I take it as basically I just need to get in the gym more. Even though I’ve been there a lot, just get in there more because once the playoffs start it’s gonna have to been clicking. Just got to keep shooting.”
The Lakers have another important game against the Portland Trail Blazers on Friday night with the winner in the driver’s seat to avoid the pay-in tournament. Morris said the team will need to find ways to come up with a win.
“Just got to get ready with what we got,” Morris said. “Playing today with no point guards, it’s just tough. We just got to figure out how to win, whatever it takes no matter if it’s an ugly game, no matter if it’s 62-60. We just got to figure how to win being shorthanded.”
The Purple and Gold suddenly find themselves in a perceived must-win game given the current state of the standings. Morris will likely need to contribute more if they hope to pull off what would be a massive win as although he finally made one against the Clippers, he still only shot 1-of-3 from deep and 1-of-5 overall.
Morris still concerned with play-in tournament
The general sense from the Lakers is that they have accepted they will be in this year’s play-in tournament and Morris, who has been vocal about that not being the case in the past, noted the team will take it in stride if they are participating.
“I think I’ve said before we wasn’t thinking about the damn play-in game,” Morris said. “If it happens, it happens. S—, I would want to avoid us if I was the top two teams. But at the end of the day, we just got to keep looking forward, if it happens, it happens, we just got to attack it head-on just like we are with this.”
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