The Los Angeles Lakers went to Houston seeking a win against the bottom seeded Rockets. Entering into the game, the Lakers have all 3 of their last meeting in the regular season and were looking forward to sweeping them.
Quarter by Quarter Analysis
The game started with the Lakers scoring points after points with the small ball lineup. The Rockets were not lagging behind as they were reliant on their 3pt shooting and were making them. The Lakers took the first quarter with a 38-32 lead on the Rockets.
The 2nd quarter was a different story as the Lakers committed a few early turnovers and the momentum of the game shifted to the Rockets immediately. Kenyon Martin Jr and Jalen Green were slashing into the basket and were using their size against the lakers.
The second quarter ended with 68-63 lead to the Rockets as D J Augustin made the last second alleyoop shot for the Lakers to try and cut the lead. It was evident that the Rockets were using their team chemistry and were running rings around the Lakers defence.
The 3rd quarter was back and forth with neither teams gaining the momentum but the Lakers were making smart plays. LeBron momentarily took over by dunking hard after receiving an inlet pass from Austin Reeves. Yet that was not enough to light a fire in the players. The 3rd quarter ended with the Lakers having just a one point advantage with 97-98.
The 4th quarter rolled in and it followed the same pattern as the 3rd quarter with neither team gaining momentum. Tie game at 120-120 the Lakers had one last chance to take the win but Carmelo Anthony missed the shot as the Rockets were very pressing in their defense.
The overtime period was an utter disaster for the Lakers as they missed shot after shot. Jalen Green from the Rockets set the tone by making a dunk first and then following it up with a 3 point shot. The Rockets played at a high pace towards the end leading the old Lakers to get caught up in it. Ultimately the Lakers lost 130-139 and their woes drag on.
Is this the End?
This match was a must win for the Lakers as they have to go against the top heavy teams in their remaining games. Struggling with the last seed of the conference shows how bad the Lakers are currently. This loss will weigh heavily on them as the morale of the team keeps on nosediving. If the Play-In tournament wasn’t in place then their chances of a playoff appearance would have gone away by now. With the season coming to an end let’s see what adjustments coach Frank Vogel makes.