The Los Angeles Lakers suffered an embarrassing home loss Tuesday night to their division rivals, the Sacramento Kings. The Kings opened up an early lead on the Lakers and there really wasn’t any turning back for them. Los Angeles made a run late to narrow the deficit, but it was too little too late as the Kings won 106-98.
The Lakers had no answer for the Kings in the first half and they were outscored 32-15 in the opening 12 minutes of the game. Nothing went right for the Lakers on the night and the Kings completed their first season sweep of the Lakers in franchise history.
However, there were a few bright spots for the Lakers and head coach Byron Scott, including the tandem of Julius Randle and Larry Nance Jr, via Bob Garcia of Sports Out West:
Byron Scott Randle/Nance combo: "I like that. They are both pretty versatile guarding 3 and 4s. I like that activity that they bring."
— Bob Garcia IV (@bgarcia90) March 16, 2016
Randle has been starting in place of Nance Jr. recently and the second year forward from Kentucky has been very productive for the Lakers. He has been averaging a double-double on the season and put up 14 points and 11 rebounds against the Kings.
As for Nance Jr., he was in the starting lineup for most of the season, but after his injury, Randle was given the starting nod. Nevertheless, his athleticism is a much-needed asset for the Lakers and he provides instant energy once on the court.
The Lakers are now 14-54 on the season and have their eyes on the upcoming NBA Draft lottery. The team will be back in action on Friday when it faces another division opponent, the Phoenix Suns. This game will have serious draft lottery implications as the Lakers and Suns are fighting for the best ping-pong ball odds.