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BBNBA: Lakers Pick Up First Win Since Kobe’s Passing

(Los Angeles Lakers)

(Los Angeles Lakers)

Good afternoon, folks. It was another emotional evening for the Los Angeles Lakers but they managed to pick up the win. Let’s talk NBA.

“When we are saying this cannot be accomplished, this cannot be done, then we are short-changing ourselves. My brain, it cannot process failure. It will not process failure. Because if I have to sit there and face myself and tell myself ‘you are a failure,’ I think that is almost worse than dying.” — Kobe Bryant

RECAP

Lakers pick up first win since Kobe’s passing

In what was just the second game for the Los Angeles Lakers since the tragic death of NBA legend Kobe Bryant, the team earned its first win coming off an emotional loss to the Portland Trail Blazers on Friday night. LeBron James posted his second triple-double in four games while Anthony Davis went for 21 points, four rebounds, six assists, and two steals on a 5-9 shooting clip.

Even though the game was in Sacramento, the Kings did a fantastic job of honoring Kobe with several tributes throughout the night. Chants of Kobe’s name bounced off the arena walls.

”We’re prepared for it. We understand it and we hope it happens every night just because of the legacy that he’s left behind,” James said in regards to opponents paying tribute to Kobe during games. ”We’re prepared for it as a team, as an organization and we’re going to continue to get through it. It’s our obligation just to go out and play the game, have that winning mentality because that’s what he would want.”

The Lakers dropped 44 points in the first quarter and held a sizable 81-64 lead at the intermission. The Kings never got closer than a 15-point deficit during the fourth quarter. De’Aaron Fox finished with 24 points, six rebounds, and five assists on 7-17 shooting but tied a season-high with seven turnovers for the Kings. Rajon Rondo added 13 points and eight assists for the Lakers.

Davis also got this awesome Kobe tattoo.

P.J. Washington’s ankle injury

Charlotte Hornets forward P.J. Washington did not play in his team’s 114-90 loss to the San Antonio Spurs. The rookie was listed as questionable heading into the game but ended up being a late scratch due to a nagging ankle injury that shouldn’t sideline him for too long. Without the former ‘Cat, the Hornets fell apart in the second half.

Charlotte dominated the Spurs at the start, winning the first half and holding a seven-point lead at halftime. At one point, the Hornets ballooned the lead all the way up to 19 points. It was looking like the Hornets might win its second game out of three attempts. But then the Spurs took over. Actually, they dominated – relegating Charlotte back to the G League.

Behind 24 points from DeMar Derozan, the Spurs climbed all the way back to ultimately win by 24. San Antonio went on a 50-15 run that stretched through the third and fourth quarters. A 23-2 run in the third period wiped away the Hornets’ massive lead altogether. Charlotte scored just 27 points in the entire second half.

Malik Monk added 11 points, four rebounds, and two assists on a shooting 4-11 mark from the field while Michael Kidd-Gilchrist was a DNP-CD for the eighth consecutive game. Trey Lyles contributed 11 points and five rebounds on a 4-6 shooting clip for the Spurs in 27 minutes.

KAT drops 32 in another Wolves loss

Karl-Anthony Towns has now scored at least 23 points in six straight games; the Minnesota Timberwolves have lost all six. On Saturday afternoon against the Los Angeles Clippers, KAT registered a BBNBA-high of 32 points to go along with 12 rebounds and three assists. Minnesota lost 118-106 as Kawhi Leonard has now led the Clips to nine straight wins in which he’s been on the court. Leonard’s 31 points also extends his personal scoring streak of at least 30-points to nine consecutive outings – the longest in the NBA this season. KAT had some thoughts about the All-Star reserves picks, too.

The Wolves have now lost 11 games in a row.

Other notes

  • The New York Knicks earned a surprise win over the Indiana Pacers, 92-85, behind 16 points and a season-high 18 rebounds from Julius Randle. The former Kentucky big man shot 5-14 from the floor while also recording three assists and two steals. Kevin Knox added two points and three rebounds on just 1-7 shooting in 13 minutes.
  • Bam Adebayo had one of his worst scoring performances of the season as the Miami Heat still managed to take down the Orlando Magic, 102-89. Adebayo’s poor shooting night resulted in just four points on 1-8 shooting but with 14 rebounds, five assists, three steals, and four blocks. Tyler Herro was on fire from deep, making six triples to complete a 23 point outing.

Check out the full stat sheet below.

STATISTICS

PlayerResult PointsFG (3FG)Reb.Ast.StealsBlocksTOs+/-Mins.
Karl-Anthony Towns (MIN)106-118 L @ LAC3211-22 (2-9)123010-1036
De'Aaron Fox (SAC)113-129 L vs. LAL247-17 (0-2)65017-1532
Tyler Herro (MIA)102-89 W @ ORL237-12 (6-10)30000+726
Anthony Davis (LAL)129-113 W @ SAC215-9 (1-2)46212+2029
Julius Randle (NYK)92-85 W @ IND165-14 (0-3)183203+1034
Rajon Rondo (LAL)129-113 W @ SAC136-11 (1-5)38201-326
Malik Monk (CHA)90-114 L @ SAS114-12 (1-3)42022-1531
Trey Lyles (SAS)114-90 W vs. CHA114-6 (2-3)50101+327
Willie Cauley-Stein (DAL)123-100 W vs. ATL73-8 (0-0)101121+125
Bam Adebayo (MIA)102-89 W @ ORL41-8 (0-0)145342+1438
Kevin Knox (NYK)92-85 W @ IND21-7 (0-3)30001-713
Keldon Johnson (SAS)114-90 W vs. CHA21-1 (0-0)10000+51
Patrick Patterson (LAC)118-106 W vs. MIN00-000000-52
Wenyen Gabriel (POR)124-107 W vs. UTA00-000101-42
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (CHA)90-114 L @ SASDNP-CD----------------
P.J. Washington Jr. (CHA)90-114 L @ SASDNP-Ankle----------------
Enes Kanter (BOS)116-95 W vs. PHIDNP-Hip----------------
Brandon Knight (CLE)112-131 L vs. GSWDNP-Knee----------------
Skal Labissiere (POR)124-107 W vs. UTADNP-Knee----------------
John Wall (WAS)113-107 W vs. BKNDNP-Foot----------------

TODAY IN THE NBA

12:30: Nuggets (Murray-out, Vanderbilt) @ Pistons

2:00 (ABC): Pelicans (Miller-out) @ Rockets

2:00: Suns (Booker) @ Bucks (Bledsoe)

3:00: Bulls @ Raptors

Article written by Zack Geoghegan

Covering all things NBA. Follow me on Twitter: @ZackGeoghegan