The Los Angeles Lakers dropped their 10th consecutive game to the L.A. Clippers on Tuesday night, falling 133-115 on a night where just about everything went the Clippers way. Perhaps one of the most telling moments of the night was a bad pass from Russell Westbrook to Dennis Schroder.
The Lakers had built some momentum and cut the deficit to 10 after trailing by 23 at halftime. Westbrook had an inbounds pass on the baseline with a chance to get L.A. within single digits. He threw an errant pass to Schroder that was tipped and eventually stolen by Paul George, ultimately leading to an and-one layup for Kawhi Leonard.
Afterward, Schroder and Westbrook were seen having an argument on the sidelines. Schroder explained the reason behind the argument and the result of it following the loss. “At the end of the day, I was so frustrated about that play because I had a chance, it was a 50-50 ball with PG and me and then I think I fouled Kawhi, and-one,” Schroder said.
“I don’t care if somebody makes a mistake, nobody is perfect, I make so many mistakes in the game so I don’t care. It was nothing about him, and I told him that too. End of the day, we’re just trying to compete and get some Ws. After that conversation, we were on the same page.”
Schroder confirmed that there is no bad blood between him and Westbrook, going back to the history between the two.
“Yeah, of course. Me and him were in OKC, we’ve been through a lot together. So end of the day, he’s my big brother and you’re gonna have conversations like that sometimes and we’re on the same page now ready to compete tomorrow.”
Westbrook had a different reaction when he was asked about the incident, via Rob Perez of Underdog Fantasy:
— Rob Perez (@WorldWideWob) January 25, 2023
Westbrook and Schroder have had a strong relationship for a number of years now, meaning there likely isn’t more to the story than just an in-game spat. However, this is not Westbrook’s first run-in with Lakers teammates or coaches this season.
He got into an argument with assistant coach Phil Handy less than two weeks ago. And as the team hovers below .500 outside of the Play-In Tournament, small moments like that can be magnified and disrupt any momentum the Lakers build.
A successful inbound and a score would’ve brought the Lakers within eight or less. Instead, they went down 13 and the game effectively ended.
LeBron James defends “makeup” of Lakers roster
Lakers star LeBron James discussed the unwillingness to give up throughout the roster, saying that laying down and accepting defeat is not in L.A.’s makeup. This was in reference to a massive comeback win over the Portland Trail Blazers in which the team trailed by 25 at halftime.
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