The Los Angeles Lakers were without LeBron James which led to a 115-106 loss at the hands of the Milwaukee Bucks.
Anthony Davis was aggressive from the jump, scoring the first six points for the Lakers to give them the early lead. Dennis Schroder aided the scoring effort by getting open for midrange jumpers, but Los Angeles struggled to keep Giannis Antetokounmpo away from the rim as broke free for several dunks.
The Lakers managed to keep pace with the Bucks as Troy Brown Jr. and Austin Reaves hit from downtown to tie the game up at 22 apiece. Reaves continued to be effective offensively as both a playmaker and scorer which allowed L.A. to go into the second quarter leading 31-26.
Los Angeles was able to extend their lead thanks to Rui Hachimura and Brown, while defensively they were able to Milwaukee to jump shots that fortunately didn’t go down. Although Antetokounmpo was able to get to the line on multiple occasions, the Lakers were able to hold onto a six-point lead.
Khris Middleton started to get going as he torched the Laker defense with jump shots and drives to the rim, though Schroder stopped the bleeding with a jumper of his own. Despite a slowdown offensively, the defense was able to stand its ground and the purple and gold would go into halftime up 58-50.
The Bucks started the third quarter hot as they were able to hit the shots they were missing in the first quarter, cutting into the Lakers’ lead. Lonnie Walker IV started to get himself going with fantastic finishes near the rim, though Milwaukee responded on the other end to make it 71-70.
Unfortunately, Walker experienced a rough stretch where he was bullied by the Bucks and then went cold offensively on the other end. Things went from bad to worse for Los Angeles as Milwaukee couldn’t miss from the field and they went into the fourth quarter trailing 88-81.
It was a better showing offensively for the Lakers to begin the final quarter as they were able to generate good looks in their half-court sets. Despite that, the defense was unable to contain the Bucks who went on a 10-1 run to reclaim the momentum.
Los Angeles was able to climb back into it thanks to some well-timed shotmaking, though Antetokounmpo went right back to asserting his will in the painted area to give Milwaukee breathing room. It was a relatively close game down the stretch as the Lakers were able to stay within a couple of possessions, but ultimately they fell just short against the Bucks.