The Lakers were thoroughly outclassed in a 109-82 loss to Utah Saturday night, falling to the Jazz for the second time this week. Los Angeles had a short-lived lead at 7-4, but the Jazz reeled off a 10-0 run to regain the advantage. The lead would balloon to 36 points in the third quarter, and the Lakers never got closer than 24 the rest of the way.
L.A.'s brief advantage coincided with Larry Nance Jr.'s only minutes of the night. The Laker rookie had to leave the game after less than three minutes with an injured right knee and didn't return. Nance had tendinitis in the same knee at the start of the season. Meanwhile, the Kobe Bryant Farewell Tour had another short outing, as Bryant couldn't play in the second half with his sore Achilles.
Bryant's injury, combined with Brandon Bass's continued absence, left plenty of playing time for the kids, although they made little dent against Utah's stifling defense. Los Angeles shot 34.4 percent from the field and gave the ball away 14 times, including seven times during a disastrous first quarter, leading to 12 fast-break points.
On the defensive end, the Lakers simply had no answers for the Jazz at the Energy Solutions Arena. Utah tied its highest scoring half of the season with 60 in the first 24 minutes. The Jazz spread the wealth among six double-digit scorers despite missing three rotation players, led by Rudy Gobert's 18 points, 18 rebounds, and 5 blocks.
Anthony Brown matched his career-high with nine points on 3-of-3 shooting from beyond the arc, but beyond that, it was a forgettable evening for Los Angeles. The Lakers will look to move past this one quickly when they take on the Houston Rockets tomorrow night at Staples Center.