Lakers Fall Again, Suffer Embarrassing Loss to Jazz At Staples

Lakers Fall Again, Suffer Embarrassing Loss to Jazz At Staples


After a disappointing loss to the reigning Western Conference champions on Friday night, the Lakers were back in action on Sunday against the Utah Jazz. L.A. was hoping to earn a bit of revenge from a loss they suffered at Utah’s hands in Salt Lake City back on Nov. 7th.

Once again Los Angeles was without Pau Gasol or Steve Nash, both of which continue to remain on the sidelines with injuries. With varying reports of their availability and when they will possibly return cluttering the airwaves this weekend, the Lakers had to find a way to get a victory without either of them against Utah on Sunday.

It does seem like Nash is continuing to improve, however, which is a very good sign for the Lakers.

Regardless, let’s get to the action from Sunday night.

First Quarter

One thing the Lakers did well on Friday night was play strong during the first quarter. Despite a strong output from Russell Westbrook in the first 12 minutes, L.A. actually finished the first period with a lead. Against Utah on Sunday, the team was hoping for similar results. They certainly didn’t get the start they were looking for as Utah jumped out to an early 8-0 lead.

After the slow start the Lakers finally got it going a bit on the offense end thanks to Kobe Bryant and Chris Duhon. Kobe was his usual productive self, but it was Duhon, who has been filling in for Nash and Blake, who made the big impact in the quarter. He scored three points with four rebounds and four assists in the first period, and helped L.A. climb back into the game.

Jordan Hill also had some productive minutes in the first, and at the end of the first period it was 27-25 in favor of the Lakers.

Second Quarter

In the second quarter things fell apart for the Lakers. After overcoming their early struggles to grab the lead in the first, they couldn’t control Utah down in the paint. Enes Kanter did some serious damage in the post with Dwight Howard on the bench, scoring six consecutive points before Mike D’Antoni put World Peace in at the PF position in an attempt to slow him down.

Jordan Hill had a huge first half, once again showing D’Antoni why he deserves to be on the court. He finished the first half with 13 points and five boards, and continues to show that he can be productive in D’Antoni’s system.

Regardless of Hill’s production, the Lakers couldn’t get anything done on defense. The Jazz managed to run over the Lakers in the first half, and went into the half trailing 60-51.

Third Quarter

Los Angeles finally opened the third with the energy and effort that they hadn’t shown in the first half. Jordan Hill started the third in the place of Antawn Jamison, who had just three points and two turnovers in the first half. D’Antoni’s decision paid off as Hill helped bring the Lakers back into the game in the third. Again, it was Duhon who also had a solid contribution for Los Angeles.

He continued to move the ball well for Los Angeles, leading the team in assists through the first three quarter. The problems for the Lakers were the ones we’ve seen in the past. It was all defensive. They couldn’t slow Utah down, and when they needed to get a stop they simply couldn’t. Midway through the third the Lakers cut it to two but had trouble getting closer. Utah dominated the paint, scoring nearly half their points in the paint.

Still, at the end of the third the Lakers were trailing 88-85, and needed to turn up the defense if they were going to get the win over the Jazz.

Fourth Quarter

Despite their hot shooting from outside, the Lakers couldn’t overcome the Jazz. They just didn’t have the defensive capacity to slow down the Jazz. Kanter continued to be a problem for the Laker big men, shooting a perfect percentage and doing plenty of damage in the post. Despite their hot shooting from beyond the arc, they couldn’t slow down the Jazz on the other end enough to make an impact.

Things got so bad in the fourth that people on Twitter were clamoring for another coaching change. Realistic or not, the fans in Los Angeles weren’t happy by the double-digit deficit the team was facing in the final period.

At the end things got out of hand for Los Angeles. Utah pushed their lead to 14 at one point, and the fans at Staples Center even brought out the boos at one point. One fan chanted for Phil Jackson, many more clamored for defense. It was an ugly game for the Lakers, and another unacceptable loss. They made it close at the end, much like they did on Friday night against the Thunder. A few shots late in the game made the final score look more respectable, but ultimately they weren’t enough.

After a bizarre final sequence that consisted of the Lakers not fouling when they should have, the Lakers lost another embarrassing game to the Jazz, 117-110.

  • joe23

    the problem in the lakers team is kobe bryant. he is the major problem in the team. Trade kobe-hogger including gasoft and war peace to a young players. And the lakers will bring down the salary cap.
    This will make the team to run for championship again.

  • mamba24

    LA needs Phil Jackson.

    • Rasheed

      L.A needs a heart….Lakers are heartless!

  • Rasheed

    I am upset, angry, frustrated with Lakers.
    Hoping for better future. Individual needs to know what is their role in order to be better team. That starts with Coach (Which Lakers management made a biggest mistake of 2012-2013 season).

    Trading players is not going to solve the problem. Coach is incompetent for this job.

    But it always starts from the top: Executive (decision making)
    Coach is a Leader whom the team follows. Unfortunately it is not effective in Lakers land.

    Despite all this I am going seek patience. If players want to win, they will win the game with will power (which I call heart).

  • play_the_blame game

    wait on friday lakers fans said we almost beat okc only lost by 6 we on the right track then come home sunday and lose to utah now what u gone say o i know its mike brown fault or maybe gasol huh?

    • Rasheed

      Yes it is mike brown’s fault :) (need to reduce anger by targeting someone for the failure)
      and NOT Mike D’Antoni’s fault. Mike D’Antoni is the best coach is the NBA according to Lakers Mangement. Didn’t you see Lakers hired him ($100 million franchise) to lead.

      Yes it is pau gasol fault for having knee tendonitis. It is a crime. Trade Pau!!!

  • SoulChorea

    Coaches figured out how to beat D’Antoni’s “system” years ago. I will never understand why he is considered an elite coach, even by his peers. The guy’s defense was suspect all along, and now of COURSE the Lakers’ main problem has been defense.

    Kobe is my favorite player ever, but you gotta be able to reel him in when he gets too ambitious, and D’Antoni is catering to him way too much. Phil would sit him (and did the same with MJ whenever he got too full of himself) and make him stay there until he calmed down. That ain’t gonna happen with this dude, so you’ll see more and more situations where Kobe just forces some craziness up.

  • SoulChorea

    I’d also like to mention this all started when Stupid Stern blocked the Chris Paul trade. It was all downhill from there

  • joe23

    Trade kobe once and for all. That will solve the lakers problem.
    Mike D can tell now how hard to coach kobe. this lakers thing is getting worser and worser everytime. Lakers going down..
    Mark Cuban is a happy man right now.

  • Leo_Go_Lakers

    The lakers (players) fired Mike Brown. It was obvious. 0-4 start… come on… and after the firing 4-1 with the interim coach. Haha.. All of a sudden they learnt how to play and win… :-) Then, they wanted Phil. All the stars, Kobe, D12 and Pau. Never happened. Now they want to fire Mike D’Antoni… It is a fight between ownership and players. And who loses? The fans… Mike D was a stupid decision. He failed in NY (you can see how NY plays now without him) and you do not have to be a basketball guru to see that this Laker team is not built for the ‘run and gun’ style. It was clear right from the start. We are headed for disaster … and more drama to come

  • Crystal

    What in the hell is going on with the Lakers?? If the Lakers have a hard time against average or subpar teams, how are they gonna match up against good teams? This is bad…I knew them hiring D’Antoni was a mistake. Somewhere Phil Jackson is laughing thinking ‘they should’ve hired me instead, there’s no way they would be 4-7 under me haha.’ I love the Lakers and will root for them win or loss, but something has to change…something’s gotta give. Screw you Jim Buss.

  • Evan Boland

    As a Laker fan, I know as well as anyone we counts success and is rings. Even is Nash helps and this team picks it up, we are not winning a chip with D’Antoni. So everyone mayswell stop getting worked up over each and every loss. Does it really matter whether we miss playoffs or get swept in the second round?