On the second night of a back-to-back, the Los Angeles Lakers weren’t able to match the energy of the Denver Nuggets and lost 111-99. While the result obviously wasn’t what the Lakers wanted, power forward Jordan Hill continued to show everyone that he needs to be getting consistent minutes.
Backing up a career-high 21 points last night, Hill went 6-11 from the field with 18 points and 15 rebounds as he continued to play with max-effort even in a loss. Asked after the game what the two performances did for his playing time, head coach Mike D’Antoni said that Hill has earned plenty of minutes:
He’s playing. He’s pretty solidified. He’s definitely playing it’s really good.
Hill’s activity with eight offensive rebounds helped keep the Lakers in the game, but they weren’t able to get over the hump. Pau Gasol scored 25 points on 27 shots as the Lakers look lethargic in the high air in Denver.
The Lakers will next play Friday night against the Memphis Grizzlies and Sunday against the Detroit Pistons before they have four days off before playing Golden State next Friday. At this point, it’d be shocking to see Jordan Hill not start at least these next three games as the Lakers look to get back toward .500.
D’Antoni continues to play 10-man rotations, but the one constant on a nightly basis seems to be Hill’s energy and rebounding. When Hill was in foul trouble, the Lakers missed his productivity on the floor and D’Antoni even had Hill playing through foul trouble on several occasions.
In a season that’s been frustrating with how the Lakers have closed several games, watching Hill continue to battle and give his all has definitely been a bright spot.
ICYMI: Jordan Hill spoke about his career night against the Pelicans and Xavier Henry’s dunk.