The Los Angeles Lakers lost their sixth straight game on Sunday night to the New York Knicks. Despite the 118-112 loss, however, a major positive took place as the Lakers welcomed their starting backcourt of D’Angelo Russell and Nick Young back after both had been dealing with injuries.
Russell struggled to shake off the rust, making only one of his eight shots and committing four turnovers, but Young had a solid return scoring 15 points.
The Lakers are undoubtedly happy to get Young and Russell back as the team is mired in a real slump. Jordan Clarkson, however, believes their struggles are temporary and will soon be a thing of the past:
“You see the lineups back to how they were in the beginning of the year. We’re still pushing. We’re competing. We’re going to go on a streak. This is temporary right now. We’re going to fix it and we’re going to get back to what we do.”
This type of confidence is necessary as many teams can lose hope when they fall into a losing streak like the one the Lakers are in right now. These young Lakers, however, are extremely defiant and believe that their level of play earlier in the season is more indicative of what this team is capable of.
Clarkson has been one of the most important players on the team, as he and Lou Williams have led an outstanding Lakers bench that leads the league in scoring. But Clarkson has struggled with consistency and shooting in recent weeks.
Of course, most would argue that the Lakers’ biggest issues are on the defensive end. Julius Randle called the team’s efforts on that end of the floor embarrassing, but also pledged that the Lakers will figure things out on that side.
Even as the losses pile up, the confidence of the Lakers has not waned, and that could serve them well as they head out for a seven-game road trip beginning Monday.
**All quotes obtained by Lakers Nation reporter Serena Winters