On Thursday, Milwaukee Bucks head coach and former NBA champion Jason Kidd went on ESPN’s First Take and enraged many fans of the purple and gold by stating that comparisons between him and Lakers rookie Lonzo Ball were “a stretch.” Two days later, Ball became the youngest NBA player in history to record a triple-double by notching 19 points, 13 assists and 12 rebounds in Saturday’s 98-90 loss to the Bucks.
Milwaukee scored the game’s first points on a four-foot John Henson hook shot and carried the momentum to a 24-17 first quarter lead. The Lakers battled back, finishing the half down 51-49 behind 11 points and 10 assists from Lonzo Ball and the voracious bench play of Julius Randle (10 points, 4 boards, and two blocks in 14 minutes).
After taking the lead on a Kyle Kuzma 28-foot three-pointer at the 10:27 mark of the third, the Lakers failed to score in the quarter’s final two minutes and entered the fourth down 77-67. Ultimately, the Lakers dropped their third straight road game, unable to overcome a team season-high 23 turnovers.
Giannis Antetokounmpo, who came into the game leading the league in scoring at 31.5 points per game, continued to put up the same sort of eye-popping stat line that he’s made commonplace in the season’s early going. Despite being bothered early on by the sturdy defense of Kyle Kuzma, the Greek Freak had 33 points on 12-of-19 shooting to go along with 15 rebounds.
At 20 years and 15 days old, Lonzo Ball is five days younger than LeBron James was when he set the then-record for youngest triple-double in 2005. Kyle Kuzma, Ball’s fellow standout rookie, put forth another impressive performance with a 21 point, 11 rebound double-double. The team as a whole continued to struggle with free-throws and threes, shooting just 59.5 percent from the charity strike and 27.3 percent from deep.
The Lakers will look to rebound on Monday in Phoenix against the Suns, the final game in what’s been a brutal road trip for Los Angeles. While the team continues to struggle in the early going, fans can take solace in their most-prized rookie replacing one of the game’s all-time greats in the annals of history.