The Los Angeles Lakers dropped their ninth straight game on Friday night to the Charlotte Hornets, surpassing last season’s longest losing streak of eight games. Head coach Luke Walton said their main issue was their defense and that they will do ‘whatever it takes’ to get back to being the defensive team they were to start out the season.
Rookie point guard Lonzo Ball was back in the starting lineup after missing the past six games. Playing just 27 minutes, Ball was limited in his return, finishing with 11 points, five rebounds, four assists and two steals.
Kyle Kuzma struggled to find himself on both ends of the floor tonight, finishing with just 4 points (2-14, 0-6 from three-point range). Kuzma stressed that the Lakers need to stick with the process and get back to playing the type of basketball they played to start the season.
Rookie Josh Hart didn’t shy away from criticizing the team as a whole, saying that the Lakers need to play with more effort, toughness, grit and heart. His comments sounded similar to those made by Kuzma last game.
One bright spot was Brandon Ingram, who was back to being aggressive. Ingram finished with 22 points (10-18) and 14 rebounds.
Ingram talks about what it was like to have Ball back in the starting lineup.
The Lakers face the worst team in the league on Sunday night, the Atlanta Hawks at Staples Center at 6:30PM PST.