The Los Angeles Lakers ended their 2013-2014 home schedule with a 102-90 loss to the Memphis Grizzlies. A huge scoring drought spanning from the third quarter to the middle of the fourth quarter (9:18 worth of missed shots) was the turning point, and the Lakers loss total moved up to the 55 mark. Only a few more to go before we say goodbye.
The Lakers defense struggled, allowing 53 points through the first half to a Grizzlies team with an average-at-best offense. The purple and gold offense hung in through the first two quarters, but the 17-point third quarter they put together ended the momentum they were trying to hang on to.
The Grizzlies had plenty of motivation to push over the wobbly Lakers. Their hold on the No. 8 seed in the Western Conference still isn't locked in as Phoenix still has an opportunity to push back into the picture. They could also still move up to be the No. 7 seed if they win out the remainder of their games, so Memphis is hungry for wins. The Lakers are an easy team to feast on in that regard.
The Lakers started off the night hot from beyond the arc but wound up burning out, as they have throughout much of the season. They still haven't won a game in April and face the Utah Jazz and San Antonio Spurs on the road to close out an exhausting season.
Mike Conley led all scorers with 24 points, earning endless praise from the great Stu Lantz about being one of the most underrated players in the league. Jodie Meeks scored a team-high 20 points, and Nick Young added in 14 off the bench.
More Lakers basketball tomorrow night in Utah. Second half of a back-to-back against one of the four teams lower in the standings. Should be another doozy.