The Lakers look to extend their ‘player hating’ streak and make it two upset victories in a row as they take on the Portland Trail Blazers. The Lakers upset the Blazers in Portland the last time these two played.
The Lakers welcome Pau Gasol back after his battle with vertigo kept him out of the last couple games. He will be joined in the starting lineup by Chris Kaman who is playing his best basketball of the season.
The Kaman-Gasol duo got the Lakers off to a quick start as they jumped up by three. But the Blazers quickly turned things around with a 14-3 run led by Lillard and Batum to take a 19-11 lead. A couple of Bazemore baskets cut the the Blazers lead to six but the Lakers turnovers hurt them throughout the quarter. Nash had an excellent quarter with four assists helping to cut the Blazer lead to two at the end of the quarter 29-27 Blazers.
Both teams were pretty cold to start the quarter before Nick Young got going with two quick buckets. A three-pointer by Ryan Kelly suddenly gave the Lakers a five point lead. The second quarter belonged to Nick Young as he was unstoppable for the majority of the period. The Lakers got a little too happy however, as the Blazers scored six straight points to make it a one-point game midway through. Despite the hot shooting, the Lakers were unable to gain any separation from the Blazers and a vicious Lillard dunk gave the Blazers the lead back. An Aldridge tip-in gave the Blazers a 63-61 lead at halftime.
The Blazers got started quickly in the third behind Lillard and Aldridge, the latter of whom scored eight points in two minutes to give the Blazers their largest lead of the game at 81-70. The Lakers brought in Nick Young with the team struggling and he continued his scorching shooting by hitting two more three-pointers to cut the lead to five. The Lakers struggled to maintain consistent offense and the Blazers were able to push the lead to double-digits. More excellent play from Nash kept the Lakers within striking distance as they trailed by only eight at the end of the quarter.
Damian Lillard looked to put this game out of reach early in the fourth as his back-to-back three-pointers gave the Blazers a 13 point lead early in the fourth. The Lakers continued to fight behind Young, Nash, and Kelly, staying in striking distance midway through the quarter. Aldridge and Lillard were too much to handle down the stretch as the Lakers offense just couldn’t keep up. The Blazers hot shooting allowed them to pull away late as they left Staples Center with a 124-112 win. For all of our Lakers post-game videos, click here!
Lakers vs. Blazers: Nick Young Ready To Retire His Shoes After 40-Point Performance, Still Plans To Be ‘Player Haters’ To Finish The Season