The Los Angeles Lakers saw their four-game winning streak came to an end with a 130-117 loss to the Orlando Magic on Saturday, due in part to the poor play the Lakers guards including Lonzo Ball.
For the second time in his young career, the 21-year-old put up a goose egg despite playing over 20 minutes. He also did it in his rookie year against the Portland Trail Blazers.
Ball is usually able to make up for his offensive shortcomings with his effort on the defensive end, but he was below average on that end as well, posting a defensive rating of 122.2 and an overall net rating of -17.6.
Additionally, he allowed D.J. Augustin to score a season-high 22 points. Augustin scored 20 points or more just three times last season.
It goes without saying that it wasn’t his night, but Ball still held himself accountable following the team’s disappointing loss (via Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN).
“I didn’t play good at all tonight, didn’t score, think I had four turnovers, so it’s not a good game,” Ball said. “Bounce back tomorrow.”
Ball wasn’t the only Laker to point the finger at themself for poor defensive effort, but he also acknowledged that blame for Saturday’s loss didn’t fall on one person. He told Kyle Goon of the OC Register that the Lakers didn’t look like themselves on either end of the floor.
“Usually we’re running around; tonight we didn’t have that fire on defense other than that first quarter,” said Lonzo Ball, who finished with 0 points on an 0 for 5 shooting night. “Just a collective unit, I don’t think it was one guy, I think we all didn’t play to the best of our abilities tonight.”
Of the 10 players that played at least 10 minutes on Saturday, only Svi Mykhailiuk finished with a positive box plus-minus (+5 BPM). While that’s a promising sign for the rookie, it’s not ideal for a team that’s trying to compete for a championship this season.
The Lakers will try to right their wrongs on Sunday against the 6-9 Miami Heat. Tip-off is at 3 p.m.
All stats are courtesy of NBA.com. You can follow this author on Twitter at @RadRivas.