After falling 103-97 to the Clippers on Thursday night, the Lakers are officially 0-2 to start their new season.
Although their early record and end result of their most recent contest may suggest otherwise, the Lakers should keep their heads up high largely because of the spirited effort they displayed against their arena neighbors.
Undersized, and even losing Anthony Davis for a portion of the game after he suffered a scary fall, the team scrapped and kept pace with a loaded Clippers squad right up until the final seconds.
Perhaps the biggest deciding factor to the final score was once again the Lakers’ poor perimeter shooting, an area that continues to prove to be their kryptonite.
As a team, the club shot a woeful 9-of-45 (20%) from behind the arc. Their guard trio of Russell Westbrook, Patrick Beverley and Kendrick Nunn in particular were ice cold as they went a combined 1-of-16 on their 3-point attempts on the night. Given the slim margin of victory, if the Lakers could have converted on just a few more of their chances, the result would likely have been much different.
By sheer regression to the mean, the team’s shooting should eventually see an uptick, even if just a modest one. With that said, given the current personnel, their inability to consistently make defenses pay from the outside will likely continue to be a weakness until addressed externally.
Despite the snowball of misses, the game did feature a slew of positives the Lakers can hopefully build upon going forward.
For one, their aforementioned effort level is an excellent baseline to start from and may help alleviate some of their glaring roster flaws. Also, the team’s role players played much better, proving capable of stepping up on both ends after shrinking on opening night.
The Lakers will need similar performances all season if they hope to be competitive and ultimately rack up some wins. This brings us to today’s episode.
On this edition of Talk-O-Tuesday (on a Thursday) hosts Alex Padilla and Alex Regla recapped the Lakers’ loss to the Clippers, their continued 3-point misses and the many bright spots that emerged.
Later on the show, the duo discussed Westbrook’s play thus far, and whether or not there is still an avenue where his minutes can be net-positive for the team going forward.
And for a short-form recap pod, check out Lakers Lowdown, in which Anthony Irwin recaps the previous day’s news and gets you ready for the day ahead in LakerLand, every weekday morning on the Silver Screen & Roll Podcast feed.