Los Angeles starts their first road trip of the season, losing to the Orlando Magic 120-101. L.A. was never in control, getting beat on the boards 51-40, allowing 36 second-chance points and turning the ball over 17 times.
The Lakers' seven-game winning streak against the Magic ended tonight and believe it or not, the season series between Orlando is over, ending at 1-1.
The silver lining for the Lakers was Austin Reaves looking like himself again. The third-year player ended the night with 20 points on 7-11 shooting. Anthony Davis was also elite, scoring 28 points and grabbing 13 boards, including six of the team's ten offensive rebounds.
Los Angeles will continue their road trip against the Miami Heat on Monday.
The Lakers first-quarter woes continued on Saturday, allowing 39 points in the opening frame. Orlando took over when Los Angeles opted to go with the three-big lineup of Anthony Davis, Jaxson Hayes and Christian Wood, first featured against the Los Angeles Clippers, helping spark the comeback victory.
Tonight, they were outscored 19-3 in the first.
L.A. couldn't close the gap during the rest of the half, even with Orlando going on a five-minute field goal drought during the second quarter. Grabbing offensive rebounds has been a struggle all season. Saturday was the same as the Lakers only grabbed one offensive board after two quarters, resulting in just seven second-chance points compared to Orlando's 26.
Describe this game in one sequence: pic.twitter.com/pI90Tfj0OS— Raj C. (@RajChipalu) November 5, 2023
To start the third, Davis was as aggressive as ever trying to jump-start the Lakers' offense. He scored 11 points in the quarter. However, Paolo Banchero didn’t let the Lakers get back into the game. He continued attacking the basket and had a beautiful highlight beating both James and Davis off the dribble to score two of his 25 points. The Magic extended their lead to as many as 25 in the third.
In the final 12 minutes, the Lakers made one more attempt to pull out the win, keeping Davis and James on the floor to start the fourth. L.A. got to within 13 but after a Cole Anthony three with 4:04 remaining the Lakers conceded the loss pulling their two starters and emptying out their bench.
All of the problems the Lakers have been dealing with reared their ugly heads in this defeat. The slow start, poor rebounding and lack of three-point efficiency all factors in the Lakers losing on the road to Orlando.
Perhaps the Lakers can get reinforcement back with the return of Rui Hachimura and Taurean Prince by Monday's matchup against the Miami Heat, which will start at 4:30 p.m. PT and can be viewed on NBA TV. If not, Ham will have to make adjustments on the fly with the slim roster to avoid falling to 3-4 on the season.
You can follow Edwin on Twitter at @ECreates88.