After having their five-game winning streak snapped on Monday by the Denver Nuggets, the Los Angeles Lakers looked to start a new streak on Thursday against the Dallas Mavericks.
For much of the night, it looked like there was a lid on the basket for LA as it struggled to hit. After falling behind by double digits early, it was able to fight back and make things very competitive in the fourth quarter by capitalizing on 16 Dallas turnovers.
But in the end, the Mavs were able to make more plays in a grind-it-out double overtime contest as they pulled out the win by a final score of 119-115.
The Lakers shot a paltry 39.3 percent overall, 24.4 percent from 3-point range and 63.0 percent from the free throw line while Luka Doncic had 35 points, 14 rebounds and 13 assists. Ultimately, they have only themselves to blame for this setback.
For some reason, James appeared to be playing in slow motion on Thursday. He had trouble getting the perimeter shot to fall, and he often settled for the perimeter shot instead of consistently attacking the hoop.
He finished 9-of-28 from the field and missed all seven of his 3-point attempts, although he did manage to put up 24 points, 16 rebounds, nine assists and two steals.
Toscano-Anderson went just 1-of-5 from the field and finished with four points, three rebounds and two assists in 18 minutes. The Lakers need him to attempt more 3-pointers when he’s open to stretch the floor for his teammates.
With no one hitting consistently from downtown for the Lakers, the Mavs loaded up defensively in the paint and just outside it every time James had the ball, preventing him from launching any attacks to the hoop in the half-court game.
Bryant had nine rebounds in 24 minutes, but he was a bit underwhelming offensively, going 5-of-10 and scoring 11 points. Interestingly, he did not play down the stretch as head coach Darvin Ham opted to play Wenyen Gabriel at 5.
Schroder carried his teammates along to some degree with six assists against zero turnovers. However, he was unable to get going offensively, going 3-of-13 overall and 0-of-6 from beyond the arc.
Christie was in the starting lineup for the second straight game, taking the place of Patrick Beverley, who had a non-COVID-19 illness. The rookie scored seven points on 3-of-6 shooting and had five rebounds and one blocked shot in 29 minutes.
He also had some moments of good defense against Doncic, as his length and effort were able to trouble the Slovenian native.
Gabriel was a big reason the Lakers stayed in this contest until the end of the second overtime. In 33 minutes, he converted 6-of-8 from the field, including a big 3-pointer with 1:58 left in the fourth quarter, to go along with seven rebounds, two steals and two blocks.
Brown shot 3-of-8 overall and 2-of-6 from downtown in his first game back after missing the last three with a quad ailment.
There was some controversy at the end of regulation as he shot what could have been the game-winning 3-pointer at the end of regulation but appeared to be hacked. No foul was called, and it was one of several plays where the Lakers felt they got the short end of the stick from the refs.
Westbrook was perhaps the only Laker who played up to his standards Thursday. He sparked them right away after entering the game by attacking the paint early and often, and in the second quarter he started dropping dimes.
He finished 10 of 23 overall and 3 of 6 from downtown to score 28 points, to go along with seven rebounds and five assists in 40 minutes. Westbrook also played good defense and chased loose balls, as he took a charge late in the first quarter and got two steals.
Nunn shot well from beyond the arc, going 3-of-8 from that distance, but overall he was a poor 4-of-11, giving him 12 points in 19 minutes.
Swider and Brown got three and two minutes of playing time, respectively, and neither scored a point.