The Los Angeles Lakers are coming off of one of their worst losses of the 2016-17 NBA season thus far. James Harden and the Houston Rockets made easy work of the shorthanded Lakers on Wednesday night pulling off a 39-point victory.
Lou Williams, who led the Lakers with a team-high 24 points, talked about the loss following Wednesday’s game in Houston. Williams believes his team simply didn’t compete, via Tania Ganguli of the L.A. Times:
“We just didn’t compete,” Lakers guard Lou Williams said. “Simple game to me. Any time you ask me questions I’m not going to give you answers about numbers. It’s a simple game. You play hard, play smart, you play together, you give yourself an opportunity to win. We didn’t do any of those things.”
The Lakers committed 27 turnovers in the loss to the Rockets and appeared to be lifeless on the court. Unlike in many of the games the team has played this season in which they’ve shown a resilient spirit and a never-say-die attitude in the second half, the Lakers had no shot of coming back in this game with a severe lack of energy that got progressively worse in the third and fourth quarter.
Although the Lakers are dealing with numerous injuries to key players like D’Angelo Russell, Nick Young, and Jose Calderon, head coach Luke Walton has made it clear there’s no excuse for the type of lackluster effort as of late.
On Friday, the Lakers will have an opportunity to get back to form with the team playing host to the struggling Phoenix Suns at the Staples Center. Walton and company have only two games left at home before embarking on a seven-game road trip which could be rough if the team continues to play with the effort they did on Wednesday against the Rockets.