In the words of Legolas in the Two Towers, “Blood has been spilt this night.” Halfway through the third quarter, it was Pau Gasol bleeding from below his right eye after bumping heads with Miles Plumlee. He left the floor, and the game, for good after the incident.
It pretty much sums up the Lakers’ night in Phoenix…and up in Oakland two days ago…and the season, if we’re being honest. They’re going into every battle already so wounded. Some days of fighting are better than others, but with every loss comes more doubt, and how deflating is a 27-point loss to the Suns?
Rebounding – It’s simple, rebounding is more than just preventing the other team from scoring in their own hoop or giving your own team a chance to score in yours. Rebounding equates effort, and with a 62-39 disparity in favor of Phoenix, it’s not difficult to see where the Lakers stood on effort tonight. Plumlee, the Suns’ center, had 20 rebounds alone, and Eric Bledsoe, a guard, had 11 of his own. The leading rebounders on the Lakers had six boards apiece – Shawne Williams and Xavier Henry. In 20 minutes, Gasol grabbed four rebounds. Jordan Hill, in 14 min, had four.
Threeball – Shots from behind the arc, alone, blew the Lakers out of the arena tonight. The Suns shot 14-32 from downtown (to the Lakers’ 6-20). 42 of Phoenix’s 117 points came from three; more than a third of their total.
Defense – Aside from the 14 three pointers that the Lakers left the Suns open for, the home team also had 40 points in the paint. It was just two points more than the Lakers score inside, but it was just too easy for Goran Dragic to get in there and for Plumlee to score so easily. Also, the Suns grabbed 13 offensive boards. The Lakers have really been letting their opponents do whatever they want around the rim, including grabbing offensive board after offensive board.
13-15 – We’re more than a third into the season and the Lakers seem to be heading downwards further. The next contest won’t be any easier – a Christmas Day meeting with the Miami Heat.
That being said, let’s put this awful game behind us, and look forward to things more important than basketball –
Happy Holidays, LakerNation!