The Los Angeles Lakers gave a valiant effort in Oakland, but it wasn’t enough to finally topple the Warriors.
It wasn’t enough, but the Lakers gave us what we’ve been missing from them and seen small glimpses off in the last few games. Coming off an impressive win over the Houston Rockets to end the 14 game win streak of the conference’s best team, triple digits couldn’t get it done against the Warriors.
In their previous two meetings, overtime was required, however this time the young core of LA couldn’t complete the comeback.
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They kept it close in the first quarter, but then fell behind in the second frame leading to a 17-point halftime deficit. Los Angeles outscored Golden State by ten points in the second half, but again it wasn’t enough to get a big road win over the defending champs.
It did, however, validate the thought that if they were to meet in the first round of the playoffs, the purple and gold could really hold their own. By then, their key core players will have matured even more, making things only more interesting.
Above all else, though, this game was a tremendous showing for Lonzo Ball, who has had his scoring abilities questioned throughout the better part of the initial sequence of the season. The latest second overall pick dropped 24 points, second on the team only to Kyle Kuzma who scored 27 after managing a career-best 38 in Houston prior to this game.
The craziest part? Kuzma got a team-high 43 minutes of action.
Julius Randle had a nice performance as well on the scoreboard, contributing 21 points off the bench in a losing effort.
Meanwhile, Kevin Durant led the Stephen Curry-less Warriors with 33 points of their own as they avoid the upset. LA drops to 11-19 on the season, while Golden State advances to 26-6 on the year.