After an impressive win over the Washington Wizards earlier this week in which Kobe Bryant scored a season-high 31 points, the Los Angeles Lakers were brought back down to Earth against the Atlanta Hawks on Friday night at Philips Arena.
The Lakers put up a fight against the Hawks on the road and seemed to be on the verge of a comeback in the fourth quarter. Unfortunately, Kobe and company came up short and, as a result, suffered their 16th loss of the season.
On Sunday night, the Lakers continue their road trip at The Palace of Auburn Hills. One of the team’s three wins this season came against the Detroit Pistons back on Nov. 15 at the Staples Center. Outside of the performance against the Wizards, the win over the Pistons was some of the best basketball the team has played all season. Los Angeles will hope for a repeat performance against the Pistons while containing one of the best young centers in the league in Andre Drummond.
Andre Drummond gets the game started with an easy bucket inside the paint. Pistons extend their lead to seven with consecutive baskets from Ersan Ilyasova and Reggie Jackson. Ilyasova continued to the put the pressure on the Lakers with another shot that went down. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope picks off a bad pass by D’Angelo Russell resulting in a breakaway jam. Pistons up big, 11-0. Another turnover by the Lakers ends with another easy bucket for Detroit. Russell ends the drought hitting two free throws. Hibbert finished at the rim off a beautiful pass from Jordan Clarkson. Lakers cut the deficit to nine after a pair of free throws from Hibbert. Russell scored off a smooth layup. Pistons led, 15-8. Clarkson hit one of two from the charity stripe. Drummond countered with yet another easy bucket in the paint. Lou Williams connected on a couple free throws to cut the lead to six, 17-11. Jackson nailed a three. Marcus Morris extended Pistons’ lead to 12 finishing at the rim and hitting the free-throw attempt that followed. Clarkson hit a jumper in the lane. Former Laker Steve Blake got on the board with a corner three. The first quarter came to an end with the Pistons up, 32-19.
Veteran forward Brandon Bass starts the second quarter off cleaning the glass and throwing down the jam. Russell gets his sixth point of the night with a jumper in the paint. Russell connected with Bass on a pick-and-roll with the veteran throwing down another jam. Pistons maintain an 11-point lead. Williams did what he does best by drawing the foul. The reigning NBA Sixth Man of the Year hit the first free throw and missed the second. Drummond finished off the alley-oop jam from Caldwell-Pope. Randle headed to the line. Made one and missed the other. Caldwell-Pope continued to light it up with another bucket. Russell countered with a jumper at near the free-throw line. Blake completes a four-point play giving the Pistons a 20-point lead. Caldwell-Pope made a layup on an assist from Jackson. Randle connected on a layup and converted the free throw that followed. Jackson made a pair of free throws of his own. Jackson hit a jumper, countered by another Randle layup. Jackson fired back with another deuce increasing his point total to a game-high 13. Randle made a couple of free throws. Julius continued to attack and hit an easy bucket in the paint. Caldwell-Pope extended Pistons’ lead back to 21. Clarkson’s consecutive jumpers cut the deficit to 17. Jackson nailed a three and led all scorers in the first half with 16. Caldwell-Pope put the icing on the cake ending the first half with a three putting Detroit up, 65-42.
Julius Randle connected one of two free throws to start the third quarter. Ilyasova scored an easy bucket in the paint. Reggie Jackson scored four consecutive points. Russell got going with a smooth layup down the lane. Randle continued to get going with another bucket. Caldwell-Pope was a thorn in the Lakers’ sides once again making a jumper off another Jackson assist. Kobe Bryant hit his first shot of the game with a three-pointer. Randle fouled Caldwell-Pope beyond the arc. Hit all three free-throw attempts. Drummond got involved with another basket off a layup. Russell recorded another assist to Bryant. Randle finished at the rim with a layup. Jackson dished an assist to Drummond. Hibbert got on the board in the third quarter with a jumper. Drummond countered with a jumper of his own. Caldwell-Pope’s layup gives Pistons a 26-point lead. Drummond slammed it home to extend the lead to 28. The Pistons center kept it going with made jumper off a Blake assist. Williams ended the drought for the Lakers with a layup and followed it up with a three to end the quarter down, 90-65.
Williams continued his hot shooting to start the fourth hitting another shot from distance. Morris connected on a jumper from 17 feet. Anthony Tolliver puts Pistons back up by 17 with a three-pointer. Morris hit another midrange jumper. Larry Nance Jr. headed to the line after drawing the foul. Hit both shots from the charity stripe. Tolliver hit a free throw off a technical foul call. Stanley Johnson drained a two-pointer. Williams scored yet again to cut the lead to 18. Ryan Kelly got on the board with a layup then hit two free throws on the next possession. Marcelo Huertas made his first basket of the game with a layup and hit a free throw after drawing the foul. Blake ended the drought for the Pistons with a layup. Robert Sacre made his first appearance in the game and hit a shot of a Huertas assist. Kelly got to the line and hit both free throws. Huertas puts two more points on the board. Darrun Hilliard drained a three which is quickly countered by Huertas doing the same. Williams cut the deficit to 15 with a shot from deep. Reggie Bullock connected on a pair of free throws. Hilliard hit his free throws. Williams split his free-throw attempts. Spencer Dinwiddie made a 12-footer. Lakers lose a second consecutive game on the road.
Final Score: Detroit Pistons 111, Los Angeles Lakers 91