With the Utah Jazz getting back most of their starters, the Los Angeles Lakers were no match for the Western Conference’s No. 1 seed on Monday night as they were blown out at home, 111-97.
The Lakers got off to a rough start, turning the basketball over while the Jazz were able to open up the game with an 8-0 run by knocking down a couple of threes. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Dennis Schroder were able to each hit a three of their own, but Utah was able to answer and build up a 17-9 advantage.
Los Angeles began to battle back as they were able to swing the ball around along the perimeter and open up good looks from distance, igniting a quick 9-0 run. However, Jordan Clarkson picked up where he left off from their first matchup with seven quick points and the Lakers found themselves down 29-23 after the first.
Schroder was able to convert on a tough layup early in the second, but landed on his back and appeared to be in some pain. However, he was able to stay in the game while Talen Horton-Tucker nailed back-to-back triples to briefly bring Los Angeles within three before Utah went on another run.
The Lakers fell behind by double digits as the Jazz continued to find success in the painted area, but luckily Caldwell-Pope was able to knock down another 3-pointer to end their drought. Kyle Kuzma was able to score a couple of baskets in the closing minutes, but L.A. walked into the half trailing 52-42.
Kuzma opened up the third by scoring three consecutive baskets, but the Jazz continue to carve up the Laker defense with their drives and kicks. Things continued to get worse as Los Angeles could not score on the other end and subsequently fell behind 69-50.
Horton-Tucker did his best to keep the Lakers’ hopes alive with his scoring, but the Jazz’s perfect 3-point shooting in the quarter prevented much hope for a run. Unable to make a dent, the Purple and Gold went into the final period down 85-65.
Andre Drummond struggled to get much going to begin the fourth as he had issues trying to score against Rudy Gobert, which was the case for most of the night.
It was a balanced scoring effort overall for Utah as all five of their starters and Clarkson were in double figures. Clarkson actually led the way with a team-high 22 points off the bench against his former team.
The Lakers got within 15 midway through the fourth quarter, but that was as close as they would get in the lopsided affair.
Horton-Tucker was the lone bright spot for the Lakers, finishing with a career-high 24 points off the bench.
Have you subscribed to our YouTube channel? It’s the best way to watch player interviews, exclusive coverage from events, participate in live shows, and more!