The Los Angeles Lakers absolutely blitzed the New Orleans Pelicans in the first half of Tuesday night’s victory. Anthony Davis returning to form obviously played a big role, but the team as a whole was on fire from the 3-point line and that charge was led by Malik Beasley.
The Lakers guard has been in a bit of a slump over the last couple of weeks, struggling to get anything going consistently from deep. But that was not the case on Tuesday. Beasley knocked down seven 3-pointers, all of which came in the first half, and finished with 24 points overall.
After the game, Beasley said that he didn’t change anything coming into the contest, but noted that he was confident and it felt good to knock some shots down, via Spectrum SportsNet:
“I felt confident tonight. I just told myself to keep doing what I’m doing, don’t change anything up and don’t worry about the pressure of making shots, just do it. And tonight I did that and it felt good to get back in rhythm, but especially get the win.”
The most important thing was undoubtedly picking up the victory as the Lakers were previously tied with the Pelicans and this victory had major implications on the team’s standings within the Play-In Tournament.
But Beasley wasn’t the only player knocking down threes as the Lakers hit 15 shots from deep in the first half with D’Angelo Russell and Rui Hachimura each adding multiple triples in the first half. Beasley admitted there was definitely a point in which he realized the team was on fire:
“At one point I was like ‘Damn, we hot’ especially after Rui hit the second one. I think Vando shot one in the first half too and it looked good. AD hit a three, he don’t usually shoot threes so that was huge for us to just see the ball go in. And then Troy missed his first one and he was like ‘I want to get in on this action’ and then he hit the second one.
As a group, threes aren’t our only option, but when we’re knocking that down, and I feel like I’m the X-factor of the team. Like last game, I feel like if I would’ve made two or three more threes we would’ve won that game. I’m not saying I gotta make threes all the time, but I gotta make an impact on the game whether that’s defense, offense or anything else.”
Beasley very well could the X-factor on this team especially when he is capable of getting hot like this at any moment. But as he said, he must make an impact on the game whether his shot is falling or not and that could be the difference in these Lakers making some noise in the playoffs.
Lakers coach Darvin Ham encouraged Malik Beasley to keep shooting throughout slump
Malik Beasley said he felt confident coming into the game against the Pelicans and that was surely helped by the confidence his coach Darvin Ham maintained in him throughout his struggles. The Lakers coach was asked after the Knicks loss about Beasley and Ham didn’t hesitate to speak about his lack of concern.
“No, not at all. I encourage him to continue to shoot,” Ham said following the game. “I don’t care if he’s 0-for-20, he’s in this league because he can put the ball in the basket.
“Sometimes you go through different spells and sometimes you have bad moments. … But we continue to fight and stack and try to do what we do and continue to keep at it, so we can get better and have things turn for the good.”
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