Brandon Ingram returns from injury, but Lakers lose fourth straight

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREUCLA alum Kenny Clark signs four-year contract extension with PackersRelated Articles Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error The Lakers have done a good job of overcoming the absences of key players. A week before the debacle against Memphis, they scored an upset win over Houston without Brook Lopez (ankle) and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (legal issues).Ball, however, is the key to the Lakers’ identity.“This was why, I think, if you asked anyone in our organization all year about Lonzo’s shooting struggles we’d tell you he’ll be fine,” Walton said, “because we know how important he is to us with the way he plays and the way we want to play.”The Lakers have been able to mask many of their issues this season thanks to the remarkable rookie play of Kyle Kuzma. After averaging 25.4 points in 37 minutes over his previous six games, he was due for an off night.Against the Grizzlies he scored just nine points while shooting a dreadful 4 for 24 from the field. He made only one of his 11 3-point attempts.“We would have had a lot more assists if I could have hit some shots,” Kuzma said.He briefly left the game in the fourth quarter after getting kneed in the leg, but returned after pedaling on the stationary bicycle in the tunnel.“I’m sure it will be sore when he cools off tonight,” Walton said.Missing Ball aside, the Lakers proved Wednesday that if there is one team in the NBA they can beat, it’s themselves.Ingram was impressive in his return, shooting 9 for 20 from the floor, but missed more than half of his free throws, shooting just 5 for 11 from the line, and committed a game-worst five turnovers. Collectively, the Lakers were once again awful from the foul line, making just 21 of 33.“Individually, we’re shooting hundreds of free throws in practice,” Nance said. “It’s just one of those things that we’re working, we’re drilling it, and it doesn’t get better overnight.”Perhaps the Grizzlies were able to offer some pointers.Memphis shot 87.2 percent on an astonishing 39 attempts from the line, with Tyreke Evans making all nine of his attempts in the fourth quarter and 14 of 15 overall. Evans led all scorers with 32 points.The Lakers and Grizzlies were tied at 76 entering the fourth quarter, but they sent the Grizzlies to the foul line 13 times in the final period. Unlike the Lakers, whose woes from the foul line continued, the Grizzlies made all 13 attempts. Ingram scored a team-high 23 points in his first game back after missing the last two with injury, and Kyle Kuzma’s hot streak finally hit a speed bump. But it was Ball, or rather, the rookie’s absence, that might have had the greatest impact on the Lakers (11-22), who lost their fourth straight and their seventh in eight games.The Lakers had just 14 assists, a season low.“That’s not how we want to play,” Coach Luke Walton said. “I don’t think that’s all selfishness. I think some of it is … It’s the natural instinct and the competitors, when things get tough, (to think), ‘I need to do more.’”Ball, who averages 7.1 assists per game, watched from the sideline, out for at least one more game with a sprained shoulder, as the team he has helped become the league’s leader in pace of play scored just nine points in transition.“I’d say we missed him,” forward Larry Nance Jr. said.center_img Lakers lean heavily on appeal (and apparel) of Kobe Bryant PreviousLos Angeles Lakers’ Lonzo Ball, center, sits on the bench during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Memphis Grizzlies, Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)Los Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Ingram #14 shoots over Memphis Grizzlies forward Jarell Martin #1 in the first half. The Los Angeles Lakers played the Memphis Grizzlies at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Los Angeles Lakers guard Jordan Clarkson #6 splits Memphis Grizzlies guard Andrew Harrison #5 and Memphis Grizzlies forward Dillon Brooks #24 in the first half. The Los Angeles Lakers played the Memphis Grizzlies at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG) SoundThe gallery will resume insecondsLos Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Ingram #14 is tied up by Memphis Grizzlies guard Andrew Harrison #5 and Memphis Grizzlies forward James Ennis III #8 in the first half. The Los Angeles Lakers played the Memphis Grizzlies at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Lakers guard Jordan Clarkson gets under Memphis Grizzlies forward Dillon Brooks on a drive to the basket during the first half of Wednesday’s game at Staples Center. (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Los Angeles Lakers guard Jordan Clarkson #6 looks to pass the ball while guarded by Memphis Grizzlies center Marc Gasol #33 in the first half. The Los Angeles Lakers played the Memphis Grizzlies at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Los Angeles Lakers guard Tyler Ennis #10 drives the lane against Memphis Grizzlies forward Chandler Parsons #25 in the first half. The Los Angeles Lakers played the Memphis Grizzlies at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Los Angeles Lakers guard Josh Hart #5 goes to the hoop against Memphis Grizzlies guard Tyreke Evans #12 and Memphis Grizzlies forward Dillon Brooks #24 in the first half. The Los Angeles Lakers played the Memphis Grizzlies at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Los Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Ingram #14 drives the lane against Memphis Grizzlies forward Jarell Martin #1 in the first half. The Los Angeles Lakers played the Memphis Grizzlies at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Memphis Grizzlies’ Kobi Simmons, left, gets a rebound against Los Angeles Lakers’ Josh Hart during the first half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)Memphis Grizzlies’ Deyonta Davis dunks as Los Angeles Lakers’ Larry Nance Jr. watches during the first half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)Memphis Grizzlies’ Marc Gasol, center, puts up a shot past Los Angeles Lakers’ Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, right, and Josh Hart during the first half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)Memphis Grizzlies’ Tyreke Evans, left, drives past Los Angeles Lakers’ Kentavious Caldwell-Pope during the first half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)Memphis Grizzlies’ Tyreke Evans, center, goes up for a basket past Los Angeles Lakers’ Jordan Clarkson, left, and Kyle Kuzma during the first half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)Los Angeles Lakers’ Kyle Kuzma celebrates after making a basket against the Memphis Grizzlies during the first half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)Los Angeles Lakers’ Julius Randle makes his way down the court after making a basket during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Memphis Grizzlies, Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)Los Angeles Lakers’ Julius Randle, left, goes up for a dunk against Memphis Grizzlies’ Mario Chalmers during the first half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)Los Angeles Lakers’ Jordan Clarkson, second from right, is defended by Memphis Grizzlies’ Mario Chalmers, left, and Dillon Brooks during the first half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)Los Angeles Lakers’ Tyler Ennis, left, has his shot blocked by Memphis Grizzlies’ Chandler Parsons during the first half of an NBA basketball game, Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)Los Angeles Lakers’ Kyle Kuzma, center, high-fives Larry Nance Jr., left, and Jordan Clarkson after making a basket during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Memphis Grizzlies, Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)Los Angeles Lakers head coach Luke Walton consoles Los Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Ingram #14 after he received a technical foul in the final seconds of the game. Los Angeles Lakers guard Jordan Clarkson #6 looks back to the floor while Grizzlies gather to shoot free throws. The Los Angeles Lakers were defeated by the Memphis Grizzlies 109-99 at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Los Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Ingram #14 is fouled by Memphis Grizzlies guard Kobi Simmons #2 in the 4th quarter. The Los Angeles Lakers were defeated by the Memphis Grizzlies 109-99 at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Los Angeles Lakers guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope #1 and Memphis Grizzlies guard Mario Chalmers #6 get tangled in the second half. The Los Angeles Lakers were defeated by the Memphis Grizzlies 109-99 at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Memphis Grizzlies guard Tyreke Evans #12 shoots the ball over Los Angeles Lakers guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope #1 in the second half. The Los Angeles Lakers were defeated by the Memphis Grizzlies 109-99 at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Los Angeles Lakers guard Lonzo Ball #2 talks with Los Angeles Lakers forward Larry Nance Jr. #7 during a time out. Ball is out with a shoulder sprain. The Los Angeles Lakers were defeated by the Memphis Grizzlies 109-99 at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Los Angeles Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma #0 fouls Memphis Grizzlies guard Andrew Harrison #5 in the second half. The Los Angeles Lakers were defeated by the Memphis Grizzlies 109-99 at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Los Angeles Lakers guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope #1 gets a hug from the Grizzlies at the end of the game. The Los Angeles Lakers were defeated by the Memphis Grizzlies 109-99 at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Memphis Grizzlies forward Chandler Parsons #25 dunks the ball over Los Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Ingram #14 and a host of Lakers. The Los Angeles Lakers were defeated by the Memphis Grizzlies 109-99 at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Memphis Grizzlies center Marc Gasol #33 and Los Angeles Lakers center Andrew Bogut #66 battle for the ball in the first half. The Los Angeles Lakers played the Memphis Grizzlies at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Los Angeles Lakers head coach Luke Walton talks to referee Derrick Stafford #9 in the first half. The Los Angeles Lakers played the Memphis Grizzlies at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Los Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Ingram #14 drives around Memphis Grizzlies forward James Ennis III #8 in the first half. The Los Angeles Lakers played the Memphis Grizzlies at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Memphis Grizzlies forward Jarell Martin #1 blocks a shot by Los Angeles Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma #0 in the first half. The Los Angeles Lakers played the Memphis Grizzlies at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Los Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Ingram #14 is tied up by Memphis Grizzlies guard Andrew Harrison #5 and Memphis Grizzlies forward James Ennis III #8 in the first half. The Los Angeles Lakers played the Memphis Grizzlies at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Los Angeles Lakers head coach Luke Walton consoles Los Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Ingram #14 after he received a technical foul in the final seconds of the game. Los Angeles Lakers guard Jordan Clarkson #6 looks back to the floor while Grizzlies gather to shoot free throws. The Los Angeles Lakers were defeated by the Memphis Grizzlies 109-99 at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Los Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Ingram #14 is fouled by Memphis Grizzlies guard Kobi Simmons #2 in the 4th quarter. The Los Angeles Lakers were defeated by the Memphis Grizzlies 109-99 at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Los Angeles Lakers guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope #1 and Memphis Grizzlies guard Mario Chalmers #6 get tangled in the second half. The Los Angeles Lakers were defeated by the Memphis Grizzlies 109-99 at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Memphis Grizzlies guard Tyreke Evans #12 shoots the ball over Los Angeles Lakers guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope #1 in the second half. The Los Angeles Lakers were defeated by the Memphis Grizzlies 109-99 at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Los Angeles Lakers guard Lonzo Ball #2 talks with Los Angeles Lakers forward Larry Nance Jr. #7 during a time out. Ball is out with a shoulder sprain. The Los Angeles Lakers were defeated by the Memphis Grizzlies 109-99 at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Los Angeles Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma #0 fouls Memphis Grizzlies guard Andrew Harrison #5 in the second half. The Los Angeles Lakers were defeated by the Memphis Grizzlies 109-99 at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Los Angeles Lakers guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope #1 gets a hug from the Grizzlies at the end of the game. The Los Angeles Lakers were defeated by the Memphis Grizzlies 109-99 at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Memphis Grizzlies forward Chandler Parsons #25 dunks the ball over Los Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Ingram #14 and a host of Lakers. The Los Angeles Lakers were defeated by the Memphis Grizzlies 109-99 at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Memphis Grizzlies center Marc Gasol #33 and Los Angeles Lakers center Andrew Bogut #66 battle for the ball in the first half. The Los Angeles Lakers played the Memphis Grizzlies at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Los Angeles Lakers head coach Luke Walton talks to referee Derrick Stafford #9 in the first half. The Los Angeles Lakers played the Memphis Grizzlies at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Los Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Ingram #14 drives around Memphis Grizzlies forward James Ennis III #8 in the first half. The Los Angeles Lakers played the Memphis Grizzlies at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Memphis Grizzlies forward Jarell Martin #1 blocks a shot by Los Angeles Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma #0 in the first half. The Los Angeles Lakers played the Memphis Grizzlies at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Los Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Ingram #14 is tied up by Memphis Grizzlies guard Andrew Harrison #5 and Memphis Grizzlies forward James Ennis III #8 in the first half. The Los Angeles Lakers played the Memphis Grizzlies at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)Los Angeles Lakers’ Brandon Ingram, left, passes the ball behind Memphis Grizzlies’ Marc Gasol during the second half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2017, in Los Angeles. The Grizzlies won 109-99. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)Los Angeles Lakers’ Kentavious Caldwell-Pope goes up for a dunk past Memphis Grizzlies’ Tyreke Evans during the second half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2017, in Los Angeles. The Grizzlies won 109-99. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)Los Angeles Lakers’ Brandon Ingram, center, is held back by coach Luke Walton as he argues his technical foul with referee CJ Washington during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Memphis Grizzlies, Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2017, in Los Angeles. The Grizzlies won 109-99. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)Memphis Grizzlies’ Tyreke Evans, front, is pressured by Los Angeles Lakers’ Josh Hart during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2017, in Los Angeles. The Grizzlies won 109-99. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)Memphis Grizzlies’ Mario Chalmers, left, drives past Los Angeles Lakers’ Kentavious Caldwell-Pope during the second half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2017, in Los Angeles. The Grizzlies won 109-99. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)Los Angeles Lakers’ Jordan Clarkson shoots under pressure from Memphis Grizzlies’ Kobi Simmons during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2017, in Los Angeles. The Grizzlies won 109-99. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)Memphis Grizzlies’ Marc Gasol, center, loses the ball as he is double-teamed by Los Angeles Lakers’ Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Kyle Kuzma during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2017, in Los Angeles. The Grizzlies won 109-99. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)Los Angeles Lakers’ Lonzo Ball, center, sits on the bench during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Memphis Grizzlies, Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)Los Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Ingram #14 shoots over Memphis Grizzlies forward Jarell Martin #1 in the first half. The Los Angeles Lakers played the Memphis Grizzlies at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)NextShow Caption1 of 53Los Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Ingram #14 shoots over Memphis Grizzlies forward Jarell Martin #1 in the first half. The Los Angeles Lakers played the Memphis Grizzlies at Staples Center. Los Angeles, CA 12/27/2017 (Photo by John McCoy, Los Angeles Daily News/SCNG)ExpandLOS ANGELES — At their best, the Lakers are in constant motion. Passing begets more passing and shots are almost always open.A young team with developing players will stray often from its ideal, but in a 109-99 loss to Memphis on Wednesday, the Lakers were barely recognizable.“We played a game where it was half-court, and that’s not our game,” forward Brandon Ingram said. “We push the pace and we average a lot of fast-break points in this league.”It was a loss that underscored the importance of Lonzo Ball.last_img read more

Lakers guard Lonzo Ball to undergo left knee surgery Tuesday

first_imgLonzo Ball will undergo arthroscopic surgery on his left knee Tuesday, the Lakers announced in a two-paragraph news release Friday. The Lakers said they would provide an update on the procedure and his anticipated recovery time after surgery is performed.Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka didn’t wish to discuss Ball’s knee issues in detail during a news conference Wednesday at the team’s El Segundo headquarters, citing a medical privacy law. He did say he expected Ball to be 100 percent by the time training camp begins in September.“I know he’s evaluating with his management team a number of things,” Pelinka said. “The good news is all the things they’re evaluating as his options have him 100 percent ready for training camp. We’re just excited to know he’s going to be 100 percent available for training camp.”Ball, a 20-year-old point guard, combined a platelet-rich plasma injection with a month-long layoff in an attempt to mend torn meniscus suffered near the end of his rookie season. He sat out the final eight games of the 2017-18 after hurting his knee in the Lakers’ game March 28 against the Dallas Mavericks. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREUCLA alum Kenny Clark signs four-year contract extension with PackersSign up for Home Turf and get exclusive stories every SoCal sports fan must read, sent daily. Subscribe here.Overall, Ball sat out 30 games last season because of knee and shoulder injuries. He averaged 10.2 points on 36 percent shoot, plus 6.9 rebounds and 72 assists in 34.2 minutes. He started all but two games after the Lakers made him the second overall pick in the 2017 draft.Related Articles Morning Wrap: Full coverage from Lakers-Clippers thriller; Angels, Dodgers going in different directions; Whicker pays tribute to legendary Mike Gillespie VIDEO: Watch Kyle Kuzma’s game winner and what he said about it VIDEO: LeBron James and Doc Rivers respond to Donald Trump calling NBA kneeling protests “disgraceful” center_img Lakers on verge of sealing home court advantage, what does it mean in the NBA bubble? Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Jubilation, anguish as race for NBA’s Western 8th seed gets as close as ever last_img read more

LeBron James, Lakers pull past Pelicans, gain ground in playoff chase

first_img“We coulda gained some more ground with the past two games, but we’ll take it,” Kuzma said. “One more win at a time and every win is valuable to us.”The Pelicans removed at least one obstacle from the Lakers’ path: Anthony Davis, the All-Star big man who is the target of past and future Lakers trade talks, did not play in the fourth quarter as the franchise continued to artificially limit his minutes following his trade request last month.It could have made the difference in the game, as the 6-foot-10 Davis had 22 points and eight rebounds on 10-of-14 shooting in just 21 minutes. The Lakers also scored 74 points in the paint in the open runway without one of the NBA’s best shot-blockers on the floor.The Lakers kick-started in the third quarter, as Kuzma and James combined for four consecutive dunks to give L.A. the lead after the Pelicans got off to a 17-6 run to start the second half.“I’ve always heard like two points is two points, but I don’t believe in that,” James said. “There’s certain plays that’s more than two points from a momentum standpoint. And those four dunks was more than eight points. It just shifted the momentum of the game, shifted our intensity, so that sequence was pretty good.”The Lakers started a small lineup, plugging Rajon Rondo back in with the starters for JaVale McGee. It left the interior open for bullying by Julius Randle (35 points) and Davis, as the Pelicans finished with 68 points in the paint. Both teams struggled to shoot from 3-point range: The Lakers were just 8 for 25 from the arc, while the Pelicans shot an abysmal 20 percent (7 for 35).But Rondo recaptured his role as a floor general on offense, notching double-digit assists (a season-high 16) for the first time since earlier this month against Boston. His shot remained rusty as he started out 2 for 11 from the floor, but he scored seven of his 11 points in the fourth quarter.Walton said he made the call to reinsert Rondo as a starter after “a long conversation” with him following the disappointments in New Orleans and Memphis. Walton said he hoped by installing Rondo into the lineup, the team would turn around with some shine from his championship pedigree.Rondo put it in less dramatic terms, saying he doesn’t mind whether he comes off the bench or starts.“Each game varies: A couple games I didn’t have that rhythm on both ends of the floor, but that’s why we have 82 games,” he said. “You get the opportunity to play again and redeem yourself, so statistically I don’t know what I am in terms of coming off the bench versus starting, but tonight, the biggest thing was we got the W.” Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error 🎥 Luke praises the team’s defense, fight and passion in win over Pelicans. #LakersWin pic.twitter.com/nhqqVgf4pO— Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) February 28, 2019 AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREUCLA alum Kenny Clark signs four-year contract extension with PackersThere was no question on this night at Staples Center, as James led with 33 points, including a display of dunks, off-balance jumpers and a competent effort in the one area where he’s been most criticized: defense. He also got help, as Brandon Ingram scored 23 points and Kyle Kuzma had 22, with all the Lakers’ starters scoring in double figures.It was close at the finish, and this time the Lakers delivered, thanks in large part to James’ big shot. On the same night his close friend Dwyane Wade hit a game-winner at the buzzer for the Miami Heat, James playfully rated his as the more challenging attempt.“It was weird: I don’t even know if it was even a shot, it was like, you know how you play pop-a-shot?,” James said, laughing at Wade’s toss. “And he had to because he had no time. But, yeah, I think my shot was more difficult.”After four days of relentless speculation about whether the Lakers might miss the postseason, Wednesday night’s events offered at least a temporary salve.Elsewhere in the NBA, dominoes fell the Lakers’ way: Minnesota, Sacramento and the Clippers all lost, slightly diminishing the nearest competition for a playoff spot and giving the Lakers’ sole possession of 10th place in the Western Conference. PreviousLos Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James, right, hugs New Orleans Pelicans’ Julius Randle at the end of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)The Lakers’ LeBron James, left, celebrates with Brandon Ingram after making a 3-pointer late in Wednesday’s victory over the New Orleans Pelicans at Staples Center. James had 33 points and Ingram had 23 in a 125-119 victory. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: Kyle Kuzma #0 of the Los Angeles Lakers blocks a shot attempt by Elfrid Payton #4 of the New Orleans Pelicans during the first half at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images) SoundThe gallery will resume insecondsLOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: Brandon Ingram #14 of the Los Angeles Lakers goes for a layup against the New Orleans Pelicans during the first half at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: Elfrid Payton #4 of the New Orleans Pelicans drives against Kyle Kuzma #0 of the Los Angeles Lakers during the first half at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: Anthony Davis #23 of the New Orleans Pelicans drives against Kyle Kuzma #0 of the Los Angeles Lakers during the first half at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)New Orleans Pelicans’ Anthony Davis, left, shoots over Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James (23) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: Jrue Holiday #11 of the New Orleans Pelicans looks for a pass against LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers during the first half at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: Jrue Holiday #11 of the New Orleans Pelicans goes for a layup against Kyle Kuzma #0 of the Los Angeles Lakers during the first half at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: Julius Randle #30 of the New Orleans Pelicans is fouled on a layup attempt by JaVale McGee #7 of the Los Angeles Lakers during the first half at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)New Orleans Pelicans’ Anthony Davis, right, collides with Los Angeles Lakers’ Kyle Kuzma during the first half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James (23) scores against the New Orleans Pelicans during the first half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: Julius Randle #30 of the New Orleans Pelicans goes for a layup against JaVale McGee #7 and LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers during the first half at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: E’Twaun Moore #55 of the New Orleans Pelicans shoots the ball against Kentavious Caldwell-Pope #1 and Tyson Chandler #5 of the Los Angeles Lakers during the first half at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)Los Angeles Lakers’ Kyle Kuzma (0) blocks a shot from New Orleans Pelicans’ Elfrid Payton (4) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: Anthony Davis #23 of the New Orleans Pelicans goes for a layup against Mike Muscala #31 of the Los Angeles Lakers during the first half at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers goes for a layup against Julius Randle #30 of the New Orleans Pelicans during the first half at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)New Orleans Pelicans’ Julius Randle, left, shoots over Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James during the first half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)The Lakers’ LeBron James dunks past the Pelicans’ Kenrich Williams during the first half of Wednesday’s game at Staples Center. James finished with 33 points and 10 assists in a 125-119 victory. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers reacts during the first half against the New Orleans Pelicans at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James (23) shoots over New Orleans Pelicans’ Julius Randle during the first half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)New Orleans Pelicans’ Anthony Davis, top, drives to the basket over Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James (23) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers competes for the ball against Darius Miller #21 of the New Orleans Pelicans during the first half at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)Los Angeles Lakers’ Reggie Bullock (35) shoots over New Orleans Pelicans’ Jrue Holiday, bottom left, during the first half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers looks on against the New Orleans Pelicans during the first half at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: Brandon Ingram #14 of the Los Angeles Lakers drives against Darius Miller #21 of the New Orleans Pelicans during the second half at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers drives against Jrue Holiday #11 of the New Orleans Pelicans during the second half at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)New Orleans Pelicans’ Julius Randle shoots over Los Angeles Lakers’ Brandon Ingram during the second half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: Luke Walton of the Los Angeles Lakers looks on during the second half against the New Orleans Pelicans at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: Brandon Ingram #14 of the Los Angeles Lakers shoots the ball against Jrue Holiday #11 and Cheick Diallo #13 of the New Orleans Pelicans during the second half at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: Brandon Ingram #14 of the Los Angeles Lakers competes for the ball against Frank Jackson #15 of the New Orleans Pelicans during the second half at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: Lance Stephenson #6 of the Los Angeles Lakers reacts during the second half against the New Orleans Pelicans at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: Brandon Ingram #14 of the Los Angeles Lakers drives against Darius Miller #21 of the New Orleans Pelicans during the second half at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)Los Angeles Lakers’ Brandon Ingram (14) shoots over New Orleans Pelicans’ Jrue Holiday during the second half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: Brandon Ingram #14 of the Los Angeles Lakers shoots the ball against Jrue Holiday #11 of the New Orleans Pelicans during the second half at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: Alvin Gentry of the New Orleans Pelicans reacts during the second half against the Los Angeles Lakers at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: Patrick Mahomes of the Kansas City Chiefs attend a game between the New Orleans Pelicans and the Los Angeles Lakers at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: Julius Randle #30 of the New Orleans Pelicans drives against Kyle Kuzma #0 of the Los Angeles Lakers during the first half at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: Julius Randle #30 of the New Orleans Pelicans competes for the ball against LeBron James #23 and Lance Stephenson #6 of the Los Angeles Lakers at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)Los Angeles Lakers’ Rajon Rondo (9) drives past New Orleans Pelicans’ Jrue Holiday during the second half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James (23) dunks against the New Orleans Pelicans during the second half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)New Orleans Pelicans’ Julius Randle reacts after scoring against the Los Angeles Lakers during the second half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)Los Angeles Lakers’ Rajon Rondo, left, and New Orleans Pelicans’ Jrue Holiday reach for the ball during the second half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)Los Angeles Lakers’ Kyle Kuzma (0) dunks past New Orleans Pelicans’ Julius Randle during the second half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James (23) gestures after making a 3-point basket late in the fourth quarter of the team’s NBA basketball game against the New Orleans Pelicans on Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers celebrates after making a three-pointer against Jrue Holiday #11 of the New Orleans Pelicans in the second half at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James, right, hugs New Orleans Pelicans’ Julius Randle at the end of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)The Lakers’ LeBron James, left, celebrates with Brandon Ingram after making a 3-pointer late in Wednesday’s victory over the New Orleans Pelicans at Staples Center. James had 33 points and Ingram had 23 in a 125-119 victory. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)NextShow Caption1 of 46The Lakers’ LeBron James, left, celebrates with Brandon Ingram after making a 3-pointer late in Wednesday’s victory over the New Orleans Pelicans at Staples Center. James had 33 points and Ingram had 23 in a 125-119 victory. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)ExpandLOS ANGELES — They’re alive.After a pair of dispiriting losses on the road that sunk them two games under .500, the Lakers showed the kind of fight that fans have been wanting more of for the past month.It showed Wednesday night in a one-legged jumper from the corner by LeBron James over Jrue Holiday to beat the shot clock in the final minute of a 125-119 win over the visiting New Orleans Pelicans – the same team that routed the Lakers (30-31) over the weekend and caused them to question their dedication to making the playoffs.“That was an impossible shot, and we needed it at that moment,” Lakers coach Luke Walton said of James’ late basket. “A big-time shot by one of the all-time greats.”last_img read more

Lakers showcase how depth is part of team culture during winning trip

first_img How athletes protesting the national anthem has evolved over 17 years Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error In a season that has so far been defined by overwhelming success, there are small, crawling anxieties, the most worrisome of which is how the Lakers play without James. Only Giannis Antetokounmpo has a better plus-minus rating than James: The Lakers have outscored opponents by 345 points when he’s on the floor. When he’s off it, they’ve been outscored by 22.The highlight of the weekend was the utility the Lakers have available when James isn’t available. Against Dallas, they went small to close a key stretch at the end of the third quarter, and against Oklahoma City, the role players played well above the sum of their parts. Can it be sustained in some way?Frank Vogel centered particularly on Kuzma, who showed the scoring prowess that has come in fits and starts this season. There’s been hand-wringing over some of his inconsistent play, which Vogel thought was premature especially since he’s dealt with injury.“A lot of people are trying to create sort of an issue, like, ‘What’s going on with Kuz?’ or ‘Why aren’t we getting more out of Kuz?’ and all that stuff,” he said. “To me, it’s just a matter of time. Everybody just has to be patient, wait, it’s gonna continue to grow. The role’s gonna continue to grow, his comfort level’s gonna continue to grow and you’re gonna see performances like you saw tonight from him.”While Kuzma said that yet another season of renewed trade speculation hasn’t fueled him, he acknowledged he’s felt something to prove: “I’m trying to establish myself.”Related Articles Trail Blazers beat Grizzlies in play-in, earn first-round series with the Lakers AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREUCLA alum Kenny Clark signs four-year contract extension with PackersThis weekend, the Lakers (32-7) were not playing games. They beat the Mavericks and Thunder, who are both on pace to reach the playoffs, by convincing double-digit margins and leading from start to finish. It’s a feat made more remarkable by who the Lakers had available, missing LeBron James for one and Anthony Davis for both.It was notable that two typical bench players who have felt whiplash from their ups and downs — Kyle Kuzma and Rajon Rondo — were leaders in the back-to-back wins. Kuzma had 62 points in the two games, and Rondo nearly notched a triple-double in the second.While both have admitted they’ve had trouble finding a rhythm in smaller stints, on Friday and Saturday, there was a sense of freedom that comes with playing bigger minutes.“I just know I’m gonna get a lot of opportunities, so just aggressive, and you know that rhythm will be easier to get,” Kuzma said. It’s a little bit easier to get in and take time to find that poise without having to force it.”The challenge now for the Lakers is to give their supporting cast that sense of flow without the starting nod. OKLAHOMA CITY — Before the weekend road trip, the Lakers were feeling a little restless.They were winning, true, but they had not quite looked as crisp as their billing as the top team in the West. In their previous four games against teams with losing records, they won three by 10 points or fewer, then felt that the Knicks tried to shake them with physicality.Dwight Howard said a group thread before the back-to-back swing through Dallas and Oklahoma City shared sentiments that they wanted to get back to being the biggest bullies on the block.“After the last game, the Knicks and the hard foul and stuff like that,” Howard said, “we had some messages going back and forth in the group chat about how we gotta come out and dominate teams and let them know we not playing games.”center_img Trail Blazers, Grizzlies advance to NBA play-in game; Suns, Spurs see playoff dreams dashed He pointed out that applies down the Lakers roster, from James who is trying to win a championship with a third franchise, to Davis who is trying to win a championship at all. The Lakers say they’re all nursing some kind of chip on their shoulder, which has built a sense of unity even among players with wildly different roles.One thing the Lakers talked a lot about over the weekend was the vaunted culture of the San Antonio Spurs, who in their prime could win regular season games with all their stars sitting out. The Lakers see themselves as that kind of team, and players were happy to celebrate productive minutes from Quinn Cook and Troy Daniels after several quiet weeks.Cook called it a point of pride that he can detach his own personal aspirations from the team goals.“You’ve gotta throw yourself into the team,” he said. “Especially on this team, there’s so many guys and everybody can contribute, so if you don’t play, you don’t hold your head down. You don’t feel sorry for yourself, you gotta be consumed with winning.” Lakers, Clippers schedules set for first round of NBA playoffs Lakers practice early hoping to answer all questions last_img read more

Bubble Dribble: What it’s like at Disney for the NBA Restart

first_imgEditor’s note: This is the Monday, July 13 edition of the Purple & Bold Lakers newsletter. To receive the newsletter in your inbox, sign up here.I can’t remember the last time I felt this much anticipation for an e-mail.On Sunday night at 10:15, three people gathered outside my door, and a man dressed head-to-toe in a protective suit swabbed the insides of my nose and mouth. The swabs were placed in a tube, which were placed in a crate, which were whisked off to a private laboratory to test for coronavirus.The NBA, which ordered the tests on my behalf, tell me the results via e-mail if everything goes right and I test negative. By the end of the week, I’ll have been tested seven total times while locked down in this fourth-floor hotel room with a crystal blue pool close enough to gawk at from my window but not to use any time soon. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREUCLA alum Kenny Clark signs four-year contract extension with PackersI’m at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida for the NBA Restart, and at the time of this writing, I’m about 48 hours into a weeklong quarantine during which I will be tested for coronavirus every day. If I’m able to clear that screening process, I’ll be one of a handful of on-campus media members (around a dozen or so writers) in the “bubble” who will bear witness to perhaps the most ambitious experiment the NBA has ever attempted — and one which I think it’s safe to say everyone hopes to never have to try again.The bubble is an exercise in layered emotions and motivations: Like the players, coaches and other assorted staffers who compose the NBA, I’m thrilled to get back to work. Like just about everyone in this country who has watched the toll of COVID-19 rise and rise, I’m filled with anxiety and a lurking sense of doubt I just can’t quash. But whatever happens, I’m here to tell the story — which could be about the power of resilience in the face of a pandemic, or about the hubris of trying to host sports while the world around us continues to struggle.This all came to a head about a week ago, when I learned Southern California News Group’s bid to cover the bubble had been accepted. While players and staff were tested in late June to begin their screening process, media was advised to self-quarantine and withdraw from socializing in July. There were no tests required before we traveled to Florida, which meant a more restrictive quarantine upon arrival.The opportunity forced me to examine a mental wall I’d constructed during the previous four months: While I wear masks and carry hand sanitizer everywhere I go, on some level I had tried to make peace with the idea that I would be exposed to coronavirus somewhere in the course of my everyday life. Suddenly, the desire to be a part of the bubble brought a renewed sense of urgency to my precautions, and underscored the sacrifice I would have to make to leave my life in California up through October. I relate to something Danny Green said on his podcast: “You never really plan for a road trip like this one … it’s like you’re going away to war or something like that, it’s weird.”I’ve attended 72 of 73 Lakers’ road games in the last two seasons, and I fly a lot. But I hadn’t flown since March 2, and while going through airport check-in, security and boarding was familiar, wearing masks and physically distancing ourselves from one another brought an edgy undercurrent to the whole process. Everything we know about coronavirus so far is that it can spread more easily in indoor environments with limited ventilation. While airlines have taken great pains to sanitize and filter the air, it was impossible to spend nearly five hours on a plane without asking myself: Is this worth it?center_img To be clear: The NBA is going to extraordinary lengths to try to shield bubble participants from COVID-19. At a reported expense of $170 million according to The Athletic, the league has brought its stakeholders to Disney, which can enforce its own protocols since it is privately owned.In-and-out traffic is heavily monitored on the campus. Employees wear masks and often have face shields. Participants are asked to keep track of their health signs, including taking their temperature and using an oximeter. There are multiple apps designed just for this campus to help navigate and monitor health. Wristbands (adorned with the silhouette of Mickey Mouse) give you access to highly trafficked areas, and if you have failed to follow some measure of the protocols — forget to fill out your survey, for example — then you will have to complete all steps before being allowed to these work areas.It has an uncomfortable feel of Big Brother, but precaution is king in an environment built to insulate from COVID-19.NBA games and practices will be both blessedly familiar and yet marked with precautions that will make them feel a little bit alien. No fans will be present at all. We will physically distance from players and staff while wearing masks. We will have close seats, but no work rooms, in order to limit the amount of places we go and potentially expose. Many facets of media access will be through Zoom, even for those of us who are literally in the same room.Even though we are on the same campus and will run into players and staff frequently, we’ve been asked not to approach the very people we see and work with every day outside of practice and game environments. That means restraining a very human part of yourself that simply wants to walk up to someone you know and say hello.None of these are meant as complaints — but these subtle differences add to the disorientation that this is both like the NBA we typically cover, and somehow not like that at all.It’s worth noting that in just 24 hours, I’ve noticed that being in the bubble is an exercise in patience. I arrived on campus on Sunday morning, expecting to be briskly tested in assembly line format like I’ve seen happen with some of the players. But instead, I was sent to my room after waiting in a lobby for about 20 minutes, then some 10 hours later, I finally was tested in my doorway. I had hoped to hear early Monday morning what the results were — if I test positive for coronavirus, there is an off-campus procedure to isolate from the rest of the bubble — but through Tuesday, I’ve had two negative results. That is welcome news, but given that the virus can take several days to become detectable, I’m far from out of the clear.There have been other small hiccups or gaps in communication as well: Food delivery times were pushed back a few hours once we were sequestered inside our rooms (as others have attested, the NBA compensated with substantial portions). We received an e-mail that we should have received a health monitoring kit with our MagicBands, but later received clarification that they would be delivered to us in our rooms. I received mine roughly 24 hours after arrival. We also learned Sunday evening that we would change rooms following our weeklong quarantine, which was a little disappointing to those of us who had already unpacked (in retrospect, it’s kind of funny).Again, all of this is not to complain about circumstances, but rather to observe safety takes time and effort to coordinate. And many of the delays have been a direct result of trying to do things in a safe way. That translates to teams, too, who will have to practice in strict three-hour windows so playing areas can be sanitized, or have to take the bus back to their hotel rooms without showering — ironically in the name of hygiene.While NBA players and staffers are already out of their 36-hour quarantine, they’ve been tested regularly for weeks. In fact, people in the bubble are tested so often that it’s worth noting the ethical gray area of test sourcing and laboratory resources used by pro sports perhaps at the detriment of the outside world. Testing glitches like the one that kept Danny Green out of Saturday’s practice could happen again, or the NBA could see a backlog in tests that render results less and less meaningful — especially as Florida in particular becomes one of the biggest viral epicenters in the world with 15,300 new cases as of Sunday.While all indications I’ve seen is that the NBA has the raw resources to pull this off, the best they can do is try to control the timing. You can’t rush along test results, or the time it takes to put on protective gear, or (more urgently) speed up how long it takes someone to recover from COVID-19. Because the campus concept was described early on as a “bubble,” the label stuck, but given especially that it is unfeasible for Disney employees to be tested en masse, the campus can’t really be considered a bubble. And an outbreak at the wrong time could send the entire experiment crashing down.But there’s something, too, that I need to admit: I want this to work. The NBA represents my livelihood, and if the restart fails, then there will be a lot of uncertainty about the league, which could see more than a billion in revenue shortfall. That feeling of wanting to see basketball again, and wanting my role to feel secure, is sometimes at odds with my role as a clear-eyed observer of the league and its challenges.At the same time, that’s something I want and something I miss: deadline writing, the thrill of telling the story the right way, finding the right details and ordering them just so. I’m glad to tell the stories of the NBA from inside the bubble, and I hope you follow along for the next few months of chronicling not just the games, but the safety, the anecdotes and the emotions from here at Disney.Being a part of the restart at all begins with that e-mail. If you need me, I’ll be in my hotel room for the next week — refreshing my inbox.— Kyle GoonEditor’s note: This is the Monday, July 13 edition of the Purple & Bold Lakers newsletter. To receive the newsletter in your inbox, sign up here.From the BubbleRondo hurt – The Lakers veteran fractured his thumb at Sunday’s practice, meaning he’ll be out for likely six to eight weeks.Partying alone – The Lakers have apparently been slow to embrace bubble entertainment, resulting in Dwight Howard as the only attendee for a DJ on Saturday night.Wearing own his name, but supporting his causes – LeBron James won’t wear a social justice message on his jersey, but has some other things planned.A shifting standard of safety – Here’s how the NBA’s messaging has changed on how safe the “bubble” is.Bracing for positive tests – What Adam Silver said about the level of caution and the capacity for cancellation.Dwight’s in – Dwight Howard went on TV to say he was coming to the bubble.JR’s journey back – How the Lakers’ new signee dug out of a “depressed state” to get back in the league after almost two years.last_img read more

NBA awards 2019: Complete list of finalists, winners for MVP, Coach, Rookie of the Year and more

first_img“Make your mess your message.”Robin Roberts wins the Sager Strong award 🙏 pic.twitter.com/3j7K3Y7WKv— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) June 25, 2019Hustle AwardWinner: Marcus Smart, Celtics The 2018-19 NBA Hustle Award goes to… @smart_MS3 ! #NBAAwards pic.twitter.com/2dH1RfT5YF— NBA (@NBA) June 25, 2019Moment of the YearWinner: Derrick Rose’s 50-point game against the Jazz.Derrick Rose’s 50 point game wins the first House of Highlights Moment of the Year award. 🔥🔥🔥 pic.twitter.com/pLzLxKppH7— House of Highlights (@HoHighlights) June 25, 2019Executive of the YearWinner: Jon Horst, Bucks Congratulations Jon Horst on being named Executive of the Year!! #NBAAwards pic.twitter.com/yb0Ach3dgn— Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) June 25, 2019 Kawhi Leonard free agency rumors: Lakers believe they have ‘strong shot’ to sign superstar Celtics free agency: Boston exploring ‘different opportunities,’ Danny Ainge says Lonzo Ball reacts to being traded from Lakers to Pelicans Giannis Antetokounmpo is the 2019 MVP.The Bucks star took home the trophy at the NBA awards show Monday. Rockets guard James Harden and Thunder wing Paul George were also finalists for the honor. Here is a complete list of the 2019 NBA award finalists and winners:Most Valuable PlayerWinner: Giannis Antetokounmpo, BucksOther finalists: Paul George, Thunder; James Harden, RocketsGiannis got emotional as he paid tribute to his family while accepting the #KiaMVP trophy. 🙏 #NBAAwards pic.twitter.com/T8p5XH73cZ— NBA on TNT (@NBAonTNT) June 25, 2019Rookie of the YearWinner: Luka Doncic, MavericksOther finalists: Deandre Ayton, Suns; Trae Young, HawksHere’s the ROY’s speech! pic.twitter.com/uQyVMqz4zi— Dallas Mavericks (@dallasmavs) June 25, 2019Coach of the YearWinner:  Mike Budenholzer, BucksOther finalists: Michael Malone, Nuggets; Doc Rivers, ClippersThe @Bucks ‘ Mike Budenholzer accepts the 2018-19 Coach of the Year trophy! 🏆 pic.twitter.com/0f4hcaJKy8— NBA on TNT (@NBAonTNT) June 25, 2019Sixth Man AwardWinner: Lou Williams, ClippersOther finalists: Montrezl Harrell, Clippers; Domantas Sabonis, Pacers Lou Will had jokes before collecting his third 6th Man of the Year award 🏆🏆🏆 pic.twitter.com/BanzGXNUKC— Bleacher Report NBA (@BR_NBA) June 25, 2019Defensive Player of the YearWinner:  Rudy Gobert, JazzOther finalists: Giannis Antetokounmpo, Bucks; Paul George, Thunder “It’s a team game and when you have guys that bring it every night and come every day with the same focus and compete like we do, it’s inspirational.” #TakeNote | @rudygobert27 pic.twitter.com/vRAMMXJWQU— Utah Jazz (@utahjazz) June 25, 2019Most Improved PlayerWinner:  Pascal Siakam, RaptorsOther finalists:  De’Aaron Fox, Kings; D’Angelo Russell, Nets🌟 @pskills43 of the @Raptors wins the 2018-19 Most Improved Player! #KiaMIP #NBAAwards pic.twitter.com/5hPCexZov1— NBA (@NBA) June 25, 2019NBA Cares Community Assist AwardWinner: Bradley Beal, WizardsOther finalists: Jarrett Allen, Nets; Mike Conley, Grizzlies; Tobias Harris, 76ers; LeBron James, Lakers; Damian Lillard, Trail Blazers; Khris Middleton, Bucks; Donovan Mitchell, Jazz; Dwight Powell, Mavericks; Pascal Siakam, Raptors”We all have a platform… Please, please let’s give back to the youth. They need us, they’re the future… It’s way bigger than basketball.” #DCFamily | @RealDealBeal23 pic.twitter.com/yc4u1g3g5m— Washington Wizards (@WashWizards) June 25, 2019Twyman-Stokes Teammate of the Year AwardWinner:  Mike Conley, GrizzliesOther finalists: Steven Adams, Thunder; Jared Dudley, Nets; Channing Frye, Cavaliers; Rudy Gay, Spurs; Udonis Haslem, Heat; Andre Iguodala, Warriors; Kyle Korver, Jazz; Khris Middleton, Bucks; JJ Redick, 76ers; Garrett Temple, Clippers; Thaddeus Young, PacersSportsmanship AwardWinner:  Mike Conley, GrizzliesOther finalists: Steven Adams, Thunder; Harrison Barnes, Kings; Al Horford, Celtics; Khris Middleton, Bucks; Kemba Walker, Hornets“This is truly a great honor.”Mike Conley wins the Twyman-Stokes Teammate of the Year and the Sportsmanship Award! #NBAAwards pic.twitter.com/yZbbJ6zeBn— NBA on TNT (@NBAonTNT) June 25, 2019Lifetime Achievement AwardWinners: Larry Bird, Magic JohnsonCongratulations to Larry Bird and Magic Johnson on receiving the 2019 Lifetime Achievement Award! #NBAAwards pic.twitter.com/Vqb0tDk3Eg— NBA (@NBA) June 25, 2019Sager Strong AwardWinner: Robin Roberts Antetokounmpo averaged 27.7 points, 12.5 rebounds and 5.9 assists this season. He shot 57.8% from the field and added 1.5 blocks per game, as well.Mavericks guard Luka Doncic was named the Rookie of the Year while Raptors forward Pascal Siakam secured Most Improved Player. Related Newslast_img read more

Browns’ Freddie Kitchens vows to fire staff members if info leaked to media

first_img“The days of inside information and the days of unnamed sources and stuff like that have ended. So you’re not going to get information like that, ever. Anybody. And if I ever see it, they’re fired. Immediately. That’s the way we’re running this organization,” Kitchens said, via ProFootballTalk.Kitchens’ revelation comes after he was asked about former Browns assistant Bob Wylie, who said the Browns should have kept Gregg Williams as head coach and not have hired Kitchens for the job. Related News However, it’s worth noting that Wylie said that publicly and didn’t hide behind anonymity when he made that comment. Redskins tab Colt McCoy as starter, Dwayne Haskins QB3 in first depth chart Members of the Browns staff have been warned.First-year Cleveland coach Freddie Kitchens said if he hears of any of his assistants or staff members leaking information to the media as an unidentified source, that person will lose his job.center_img The Browns have been heavily scrutinized for many years because of how bad they’ve been, in large part due to their revolving door at quarterback. This season, many expect the team, coming off a 7-8-1 mark, to be even better under Kitchens, his staff and second-year quarterback Baker Mayfield.The additions of Odell Beckham Jr. and Kareem Hunt have heightened the expectations, as well.But this offseason hasn’t been without controversy — running back Duke Johnson reportedly requested a trade but was denied after the Browns signed Hunt. Alex Lewis announces Ravens released him after 3 seasonslast_img read more

NFL trade rumors: Colts receiving calls, ‘could be active in the coming weeks’

first_img“Jacoby has too much value to us, not only as our backup quarterback, who I think you can absolutely win with and I think he’s a starter in the league, but also to the locker room,” Colts general manager Chris Ballard said in mid-January (via the New York Daily News). “He is well-respected throughout the locker room by both sides of the ball — offensively and defensively.”It would take somebody doing something that would absolutely blow me away, and it has to be the right thing for the kid, too. I’m not just sending him anywhere.”Indianapolis starter Andrew Luck is dealing with a calf injury, which has limited him during training camp, making it even more unlikely that the team would move Brissett. The Colts could make multiple moves before the start of the regular season.Indianapolis has been receiving trade calls, according to a report from NFL Network, and the team “could be active in the coming weeks.” Colts claim running back D’Onta Foreman off waivers The Colts have depth at cornerback, wide receiver and on the offensive line, the report notes, but is currently not shopping any particular player.As the trade market picks up, one team to watch is the #Colts, who have numbers at CB, WR, OL and are getting calls. They’re not shopping anyone, but could be active in the coming weeks if the offer’s right.— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) August 12, 2019The Colts have multiple pass-catching options behind leading wideout T.Y. Hilton and tight end Eric Ebron. They also have Jacoby Brissett, a top backup quarterback, but they’ve said previously they’re not looking to deal him. Related News Andrew Luck injury update: Colts quarterback (calf) to miss 3 practices Spencer Ware wants to keep playing, plans to reach injury settlement with Colts “(Luck) is just doing everything possible — walkthroughs continue to be really good, really tuned in, and then physically just doing everything he can do to get back on the field,” Colts coach Frank Reich told reporters Monday (via the team’s official website).Luck, 29, completed 67.3% of his passes and threw for 39 touchdowns, along with 15 interceptions, in 2018. The Colts finished the season with a 10-6 record and advanced to the divisional round of the playoffs, where they fell to the Chiefs.last_img read more

Our successful football player Edin Džeko scored two goals in three minutes

first_imgIn a brilliant performance of the 20th  English premiership our national team football player Edin Džeko has scored two goals in only three minutes. This only proves his excellence and professionalism in what he does best.Džeko is responsible for the victory of the Manchester City football club, although his third goal was attributed to the football team of Norwich. Our Bosnian ”diamond” has entered the history of English League as a football player who achieved to score two goals in three minutes.last_img read more

Igokea defeated Krka with 84:75

first_imgIn the 25th round of regional ABA League, basketball club ‘Igokea’ from Laktaši defeated basketball club ‘Krka’ from Novo Mesto with 84:75, and with this victory ‘Igokea’ has secured its first place at the table score one round before the end of the competition.The most efficient player of ‘Igokea’ was Jorović with 24 points, Edwards with 17, and Štemberger with 13.In the last, 26th round which is going to played on 23 March, Igokea will play against Cibona in Zagreb, and Široki Wwin will play against Cedevita.last_img read more