The Los Angeles Lakers barely took care of business Friday night at home, beating the New Orleans Pelicans, 123-113. The win snapped the Pelicans’ four-game winning streak, as the Lakers now have a four-game winning streak of their own.
Here’s our recap of the win that should have been much larger than what the 10-point win shows.
The “young Lakers” return as “young Pelicans”
Tonight was a special night considering it was only a January game, as many former Lakers from the previous year returned to their old stomping grounds. Those players were Brandon Ingram, Lonzo Ball, and Josh Hart, as they returned to play on the purple-and-gold court for the first time since being traded for Anthony Davis.
The former young Lakers impressed, as Brandon Ingram had 22 points (10-of-27 from the field), Lonzo Ball had 23 points (10-of-16 from the field) while Josh Hart added 5 points (+15).
The Lakers bench sucked
There’s really not much to be said other than that. The bench was most of the reason for the fourth-quarter collapse, where the Lakers were outscored 30-18 by the Pelicans.
Just take a quick look at each of the plus/minus totals for each bench player below.
Kyle Kuzma: -13
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope: -5
Rajon Rondo: -19
Troy Daniels: -5
Dwight Howard: -18
Rajon Rondo was especially bad, deserving all of this tweet from us.
me watching the lead get blown but still being on my lakers exceptionalism bullshit pic.twitter.com/8gaujE6MAe
— Lakers Outsiders (@LakersOutsiders) January 4, 2020
Anthony Davis continues to bully his former team
Speaking of terrifying, Anthony Davis was on another mission to light it up against his former team, also having a great first half with 21 points, nine rebounds, and three steals. In the first half, he attempted seven free throws, as he was having his way when matched up on a smaller player. The Pelicans have somewhat of a small lineup, which seems even smaller when stacked up against the Lakers’ immense length and size.
Davis ultimately continued his dominance in the second half, dropping a trio of threes, ending up with 46 points, 13 rebounds, and a +26 plus/minus.
The Lakers will be at home again this Sunday, as they welcome the Detroit Pistons into town with tip-off happening at 7:00 p.m. PST.