The Lakers suffered a historic loss on Monday versus the Sixers. It was the biggest margin of defeat in LeBron James’ career. Despite the ultimate outcome things did start off badly for the Lakers in the opening frame.
The 76ers went on to win by 44 points and Los Angeles couldn’t even muster up a fake comeback in the fourth to give themselves even a glimmer of hope on the road.
“It’s a game built on runs, so when a team is pushing – we came out great and they started making their run – you have to buckle down and meet force with force,” Ham said postgame. “I thought, at different segments, they out-hustled us, got some offensive rebounds and they made some shots and I thought we dropped our heads a little bit…We showed during different moments in that game that we had enough to do what we needed to do, it just wasn’t consistent enough.”
The run was the catalyst to the loss, no question, but L.A. did cut the deficit down from 25 to 15 at the half. Philadelphia returned from the break and continued shooting lights out from three, going 22-46 on the night. Everyone stepped up for Philly, whether it was Patrick Beverly hitting open threes, Tyrese Maxey leading all scorers with 31 on the night or Joel Embiid giving an MVP-level performance with a triple-double.
After the game, Ham didn’t excuse the display from his team but did express how things quickly got out of hand due to some early game challenges.
“I felt like we let some in-game adversity, whether it was some calls that didn’t go our way, some shots we normally make – we got some great looks in the first quarter that didn’t go down – we said it before the game, this team puts you in a position where you have to give multiple efforts and you have to have a next-play mentality,” Ham said. “They have championship aspirations. So do we. But in the short term, your competitive spirit has to be at a high level.”
Whether the best course of action for L.A. is to quickly move on from this loss and wait for reinforcements to return or search for a trade to upgrade the roster, one thing is clear, the effort needs to be better.
No context can justify such a display when your two stars are healthy and a bad call or two doesn’t explain allowing 138 points to be scored and losing each quarter.
The good news for Los Angeles is they’ll play the team with the worst record on Wednesday, so a bounce-back win should not only be expected but required after this showing.
You can follow Edwin on Twitter at @ECreates88.