Recap: Lakers Can’t Defend Magic, Let Game Slip Away
The Lakers are coming off a tough loss against the defending NBA Champion Miami Heat. In spite of being the underdog, the Lakers kept the game competitive, but they were not able to come out with the victory. After the loss, the Lakers headed North to face the Orlando Magic in the second game of a back to back. The Magic are 11-32 this season, but they have some nice young pieces on the roster. This game could decide who gets more ping pong balls at the end of the season.
The Lakers started the game strong, led by Pau Gasol who was active on the glass. The Lakers were hitting their jumpers and Ryan Kelly had the play of the quarter when he hit an insane layup and was fouled in the process. The Lakers did not commit any turnovers, but the Magic were much more careless with the ball with five turnovers in the quarter. Kendall Marshall led the way with seven points and six assists in the quarter and the Lakers had a 32-38 lead at the end of the first.
The Lakers didn’t let up to start the second quarter, they continued to hit jump shots and played solid defense. However, the Magic were able to go on a 11-0 run midway though second quarter and grabbed a three point lead after being down for most of the game. The Magic were able to beat the Lakers in the battle of the boards and they slowly started to pull away. The Magic outscored the Lakers in fastbreak points and points in the paint. After not having any turnovers in the first, the Lakers were sloppy in the second, giving the Magic easy points off turnovers. The Lakers were able to slow down the Magic a bit and finished the half with a 55-53 lead.
Both teams had runs to start the third quarter, but the neither team could extend their lead. The Lakers committed too many fouls early and midway through the third they were out of fouls. The Lakers could not contain the Magic defensively, which is why the game was so close even though the Magic were committing turnovers of their own. The Magic got hot at the end of the third and finished the quarter with a 91-80 lead. Tobias Harris led all scorers with 24 points and 17 rebounds. Jodie Meeks led the Lakers with 17 points.
The Magic rode their momentum from the third quarter into the fourth. The Lakers simply could not defend, especially Tobias Harris. He had his way with the Lakers, scoring and dominating on the glass. The shots that were not falling in the first half, fell for the Magic in the last quarter. The Lakers continued to try and chip way, but they were trading baskets with the Magic and the lead remained the same four minutes left in the game. The Magic won the ball game 114-105. Harris was impressive with 28 points and 20 boards.