The Los Angeles Lakers suffered a third consecutive loss on Tuesday night, falling on the road to the Utah Jazz. Even though they came up short in the end, Luke Walton’s squad put forth an admirable effort against a tough playoff team.
The Lakers scored 110 points against one of the NBA’s best defenses without their three best playmakers, who could very well be out for the rest of the season. Despite being down double digits in the second half, the Lakers fought back to make it a game down the stretch.
Unfortunately, there were some little things that cost them in the end, as Walton explained, via Spectrum SportsNet:
“I told the guys physically, we gave enough tonight. I was very proud and happy with the effort that we physically gave tonight. One of the reasons we lost was the little things. The road mentality we talk about. When we did have our stops, we were giving up offensive rebounds. They had 23 second-chance points, 14 offensive rebounds. We did a nice job of attacking to the rim, we got to the free throw line, but then we missed 12 free throws in a game we lost by seven. I thought mentally we didn’t compete at a high enough level against a playoff team, that you need to to win on the road. But I was happy with the physical effort we gave tonight.”
Free throws have been a problem for the Lakers all season as they have been last in the NBA in percentage for quite some time. Rebounding is something that hasn’t been a problem until recently.
The Lakers also allowed the Sacramento Kings to grab 13 offensive rebounds on Sunday and have 32 fewer shots than their opponents over the last two games. Things have been rough for the Lakers down the stretch, especially with injuries destroying the rotation.
Walton has a reason to be proud of his team’s effort, but if they can’t fix those little things it could wind up being a rough finish to the year that he was hoping to avoid.
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