MAGIC -at- LAKERS – 3-7-18 - Thoughts and :-)) Ratings
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2018 10:53 pm    Post subject: MAGIC -at- LAKERS – 3-7-18 - Thoughts and :-)) Ratings

11-12 From the Freethrow Line… Always an adventure with this team in the closing minutes.

The Lakers fell behind early with 6 turnovers in the first quarter. The bench dug them out of the double-digit hole as the Lakers had just 1 turnover in the next quarter to take a 5-point lead at halftime.

With 9 minutes left and the score tied 85-85, Luke called a timeout. He brought in Kuzma for Randle and the Lakers went on a 6-0 run to force a timeout. They extended it to an 11-0 run, forcing another timeout.

Just when you think they might have the game in control, they started to stumble again. “It felt like we started play as if we won the game,” Luke said.

A banked three by the Magic would cut it to 4. They’d trim it to 1 with 33 seconds left. The Lakers would have a poor possession on the other end and the Magic attacked off the rebound, scoring a layup with 5 seconds left.

All game long we went to Lopez in the post for scores (what we should have done last time we played the Magic). He came up big a few minutes earlier out of a timeout with a jumphook. We went to him again here. He drew a foul on a drop-step layup attempt with 0.6 left and down 1. Lopez stepped to the line and hit both clutch ones.

The Lakers were 11-12 from the freethrow line. Nice to see them win a game again by hitting late FTs.

It wasn’t quite over, however. The Magic called a timeout and moved the ball up court. As they went to inbound for a lob, the clock started early by the officials. They blew the play dead and called for a jumpball at midcourt. That killed any chance the Magic had to try to win it.

“That sucks for the Magic, but I’m glad we won,” Isaiah said. Weird rule, but the Lakers will take it, winning 108-107.


Ball -- -- His three shot wasn’t falling early on as he went 1-6 from three in the first half, but he had 5 assists, 5 boards and 2 steals to put together one of those well-rounded stat lines. The playmaking and rebounding would go away in the second half, but in the third quarter, he started scoring. He sank three threes and got in the paint for more scores. He’d end up shooting 4-13 from three (a couple of those were percentage busters at the end of a quarter or trying to beat the shotclock). That’s a lot of attempts from three, though. Defensively, he had some really nice recoveries to block shots or strip players about to score. In the final minute, though, he gave up a couple of big drives not staying in front of his man. Those were big. The Stats: He scored 16 points on 6-16 shooting (4-13 from three) to go with 6 boards, 5 assists, 2 steals, 1 block, 3 turnovers and 3 fouls in 27 minutes. He was a -12. The Action: He missed a three straight away. He missed another three straight away. He gave up dribble penetration and a score. He airballed after trying to put his man in jail (he wanted the foul). He sank a wing three off a handoff. His post entry pass was picked off. He blocked a big from behind on a great recovery in the post. He missed a wing three. He swiped a ball at midcourt. He missed a wing three when his man went under the screen. He missed another open three on a kickout. Long outlet to Lopez for the layup. He whipped a bullet feed to KCP cutting for a layup (great reaction time on that). He hit Lopez off the two-man game at the end of the half for a short one. Second Half: He got into the paint and swished the floater. Quick attack off the three line on a kickout for a layup. He swished a three on a kickout. He swished a corner three on a kickout from Kuzma. He took a wing pass and hit the three out of a timeout. He missed a wing three on a kickout, getting undercut with no call right in front of the ref, too, very weak. His perimeter pass was picked off, but he hustled back and stripped a man to save a dunk (great job). He missed a 40-footer at the buzzer (that will hurt percentages). He drew a clear-out foul to get a stop. He tapped an offensive board out. He missed a three up against the shotclock. He gave up a layup on a drive, then a foul on a drive in crunch time. He missed a deep three with 11 seconds left up against the shotclock.

Randle -- -- He had 8 points on 4-8 shooting and 8 boards in the first half working the paint. There were a couple of times scores by Randle forced timeouts when he overpowered defenders. Coaches are game planning for him now. When he’s overpowering people and there is no help, you see that kind of reaction. He got benched in the fourth after we gave up a score. Kuzma came in and got the Lakers on a run, so Randle watched most of the quarter from the bench. He’d finish with the double-double. I think Luke also wanted Lopez in the post and Kuzma spacing for him. The Stats: He scored 12 points on 6-11 shooting (0-1 from the line) to go with 11 boards, 3 assists, 2 turnovers and 3 fouls in 30 minutes. He was a +3. The Action: He was stripped as he faced up. He hit Kuzma in transition for the three. He was called for a hook in the post, turnover. He forced Gordon into a travel. He attacked down the lane, spun and hit the jumphook. He couldn’t muscle in a layup after working the post. He missed the first attempt on the roll, got it back and powered in the And-1 after pumpfaking to get defenders in the air, he missed the FT. He attacked from the wing and overpowered his man for a layup. He was blocked in a crowd (hit on the head, too). He kept a Kuzma miss alive and it led to a Laker score. He cleaned up KCP’s dribble penetration miss with a putback. Second Half: He was called for a charge on a baseline drive. He took a bounce pass and scored a layup in the crowd. He posted up, backed his man down, power drop-stepped to the middle to shed his man and score the layup. He hit Lonzo for a three out of a timeout.

Lopez -- -- Big time freethrows by Lopez to win the game tonight. A much better job working the ball to Lopez in the post in this game early on to set the tone. Luke said that was the game plan (after last time against the Magic, it better be). The Lakers also went to Lopez for a couple of key possessions out of timeouts in crunch time. The first was a jumphook score to help the Lakers during the stretch when they were struggling. The second, of course, was his post-up attack with 5 seconds left. He drew FTs on a drop-step layup attempt. Down 1, he made both with 0.6 to win the game. “Just be confident. There’s no question they are going in,” Lopez said. Really happy we went to him for the close instead of some guard play. “We would like to get him more touches down there on the block,” Luke said. He was sporting a shaved head tonight and scored 27. Coincidence? I don’t think so. Of course, it may have drained all his ability to get a rebound. Supposedly, that’s the first time someone scored 27 points without getting a rebound. The Stats: He scored 27 points on 12-18 shooting (1-4 from three, 2-2 from the line) to go with 3 assists, 1 steal, 2 turnovers and 4 fouls in 35 minutes. He was a -15. The Action: He posted up and hit the jumphook. He missed a face-up bank from 15 feet out. Sloppy handoff, turnover. He missed a wing three. Bad lob finish attempt, should have just gathered the pass. He completely choked a layup not using glass. He scored a layup on the screen-roll, should have been an And-1. He gave up an And-1 after letting his man drive past him. He backed his man down and hit the jumphook. He worked the post for a layup on an up and under. He scored a layup on a rim run when Lonzo found him with the outlet. He missed a wing three, stepping back. Soft little floater off the two-man game with Lonzo. Second Half: Illegal screen on a moving handoff. He posted up and hit Lonzo for three. He wasn’t ready for a pass, turnover. Way short on an open three. He took a pass in the middle of the paint and stretched under the D for a layup. He attacked from the perimeter with the clock low and scored a layup. He dunked off the drive and dish from Isaiah. He drained a three off a kickout from IT. He hit a jumphook in the post. He got bumped in the post and hit the side of the board, but hustled back in D and poked a ball away to get it back. He took a low interior pass and scored an easy one. He got the inbounds, worked the post, drop-stepped and was fouled with 0.6 left, he made both clutch FTs.

Kuzma -- -- Nice bounce his step early on in this one. He had 12 points on 5-8 shooting and 5 boards in the first half. Most of his work early on was around the rim, including dunk in transition (and another one of those near poster dunks attempts over a defender that didn’t go for him). Key stretch in the fourth quarter, Luke called a timeout, brought Kuzma back in and he helped the Lakers pull out to a 6-point lead off some attacks for scores. Much better shot selection in this one. I don’t recall him shooting any off-balance jumpers or settling for that. He had the runners going and was picking his spots well. We had him on Gordon down the stretch. He had a good challenge on a three that Gordon ended up banking in. That was huge for the Magic. If that doesn’t go, this is a much easier win. Very nice to see Kuzma hit the 20-point mark again, but also pulling off the double-double. Very good hands tonight to come up with some steals. Just good energy all around. Hopefully, we don’t go big minutes like this, though. The Stats: He scored 20 points on 9-16 shooting (1-4 from three, 1-1 from the line) to go with 10 boards (2 offensive), 1 assist, 3 steals, 1 block, 2 turnovers and 2 fouls in 42 minutes. He was a +3. The Action: He drained a three running to the corner on the break to take the pass. He took a bullet feed from KCP and flipped it in over his head in a crowd. He missed a corner three. He poked a ball loose in the paint to ignite a break. He missed a runner, scooped up a loose ball Randle kept alive and scored the And-1 reverse, he made the FT. He missed a massive hammer dunk on a cut down the lane (probably fouled). He attacked off the three line in transition and hammered. He blocked a shot. He lost his man with a behind-the-back dribble, then scored around the help D. Second Half: Unforced error with a travel on the perimeter. He hit Lonzo for a corner three. He missed a wing three on a relocation. He gave up a backdoor score. He was blocked on a drive. He threw a cross-court pass out of bounds. He curled into the paint and hit the floater. He grabbed a board, pushed it up, attacked and reversed. He up-faked, attacked off the three line and hit the runner off glass. He filled the wing on the break, took the pass, attacked and scored the layup. He missed a 14-footer, we got it back to him and he missed a three.

Caldwell-Pope -- -- Pretty quiet overall game from KCP. Defensively, he wasn’t making much impact early on. Offensively, he let the game come to him, getting half his points on a couple of threes in the fourth quarter. He missed a big one late, though. We didn’t see those big rebounding numbers tonight, either. The Stats: He scored 10 points on 3-7 shooting (2-5 from three, 2-2 from the line) to go with 2 boards, 3 assists, 1 turnover and 2 fouls in 39 minutes. He was a -17. The Action: He zipped a pass through defenders to Kuzma for a layup. He missed a wing three. Late on the kickout to Lopez off the curl and it forced a tough shot. He missed a layup on a curl, but we cleaned it up. He pushed out the break and drew FTs, he made both. He stripped his man to ignite a break. He missed a corner three on a kickout. He cut and Lonzo zipped a pass to him for a layup. Second Half: He crashed the glass and regained a possession. He drew an illegal screen call out of a timeout fighting over the top. Then he swished a sideline three on the other end on a kickout. He knocked down an open three on a kickout. He missed a corner three on a kickout.

Thomas -- -- “We don’t know how to win yet,” Isaiah said. It’s true. Our late game execution has left a lot to be desired. Some excellent playmaking by him tonight. He had the Clarkson role down early on. Some excellent plays and some head scratchers mixed in with spotty defense. But he drained several threes and setup teammates well and helped dig the Lakers out of an early hole. He was a +10 in the first half and had 9 points on 3-6 shooting in the first half, scoring all his points on threes. Where he separates himself from JC is mixing in the great playmaking with the scoring ability. Isaiah dominated the Magic early on the fourth with a series of drives and setups for teammates. This got the Lakers into their double-digit lead. He was collapsing the D and spotting open teammates again and again. Don’t look at the scoring numbers, but the 9 assists with 2 turnovers. Easily his cleanest playmaking game since he’s been here. The Stats: He scored 13 points on 5-12 shooting (3-6 from three) to go with 3 boards, 9 assists, 2 turnovers and 1 foul in 26 minutes. He was a +9. The Action: He swished an open three in transition. He hit Lopez rolling for the layup. He was stripped easily on a double team, score the other way. He was called for a travel next time down. He missed a floater. His pass was deflected right back to him in transition so he drained the three. He hit Zubac running the floor for FTs. A little low on a screen-roll pass to Zubac under the hoop but it was controlled for a layup. His man fell, so he squared up and drained the three. He missed a high arching baseline runner. He missed a corner three. Second Half: He found Lopez in the paint for a score. He took his eyes off a bad pass and lost it out of bounds. He took a handoff to his left and hit the floater. He crossed over and missed an open wing three. He moved in off the three line and hit the baseline pull-up. He kicked out to KCP for a three. He broke down a bigger defender, attacked the paint and fed Lopez for the dunk. He attacked and couldn’t finish a layup. He attacked from the corner and hit Lopez for a three. He collapsed the D and kicked to KCP for a three. He got into the paint again and found Lopez for an easy one. He missed a short one but got it back. He missed a wing three on iso.

Zubac -- -- A team-high +16. Some of that is playing with Isaiah, but Zubac is also out there battling on both ends. He’s a big target for teammates to find him and very active. He got to the line trying to finish strong. The Stats: He scored 6 points on 1-4 shooting (4-4 from the line) to go with 5 boards, 2 assists and no fouls in 14 minutes. He was a +16. The Action: He was fouled on a dunk attempt, he made both. He missed a tip-in. Nice job changing ends and IT found him for FTs, he made both. He gathered up a low pass and scored the layup. He was blocked on a dunk and wanted the foul. Second Half: He missed a tough 18-footer trying to beat the shotclock. Great recovery on Gordon to force a wild airball reverse.

Caruso -- -- We’ve only got a couple of days we can use him before a change on his two-way contract would be needed. The goal here was to keep Ennis off the court, of course. He had a +15 tonight. Not quick the blackhole, life sucking force of Ennis. He hit a jumper and knocked down a couple of FTs. He said he doesn’t know where he’ll play from night to night. “At the end of the day, it’s just basketball,” he said. The Stats: He scored 4 points on 1-2 shooting (0-1 from three, 2-2 from the line) to go with 2 boards, 1 assist, 1 steal, 2 turnovers and no fouls in 13 minutes. He was a +15. The Action: He swiped a ball on the sideline and was fouled for FTs, he made both. He got tapped on a wing three on a kickout. He held his own in the post to get a stop. He was called for a travel on a push off. Second Half: He stepped in off the fly by and hit the baseline jumper.

Wear -- -- He had a brief appearance to start the fourth quarter and missed a couple of tough midrange jumpers. Once the Magic brought Gordon back in, Luke immediately matched up with Randle and sat Wear. The Stats: He didn’t score on 0-2 shooting and had 1 foul in 2 minutes. He was a +0. The Action: He did not play in the first half. Second Half: He missed a 20-footer. He missed an 18-footer off the dribble. XXX

Bryant -- -- Very brief stint late in the first quarter to give Randle a short break. The Stats: No stats in 3 minutes. He was a -4. The Action: Nothing to report. Second Half: He did not play in the second half.

Walton -- -- Lakers defense giving up some easy ones again to start the game… The Lakers trailed 21-12 with over 4 minutes left when Luke went to the bench… He went to Bryant and Thomas for Randle and Kuzma… Zubac and Caruso in for Lopez and Ball, Lakers down 11 with 2 minutes left… Just embarrassing basketball again by the Lakers early on… Randle back in for Bryant... Kuzma back in down 11 for KCP… The Lakers trailed 32-23 after the first quarter… He started the Zubac, Randle, Kuzma, Caruso, Thomas lineup… They cut the lead to 2… Down 4 when Lonzo and Lopez returned, Caruso and Zubac out… KCP in for IT, Lakers pulling even… Good job controlling the turnovers in the second quarter… The Lakers led 56-51 at the half… Lonzo jumpstarting the offense with threes and scores in the paint… Timeout up 1 with 4:10 left in the quarter. He brought in IT for Randle… Caruso in for KCP, Lakers down 2… Tied up when Zubac came in for Lopez… The Lakers led 81-79 heading into the fourth… He started a Zubac, Wear, Caruso, KCP, IT lineup… Randle in for Wear to match up with Gordon up 2… Timeout tied up 85-85 after 3 minutes. He sat Randle for Kuzma out of that… A 6-0 run with a couple scores by Kuzma and the Lakers forced a timeout… Ball in for Caruso out of that… Lopez in… Timeout after the Magic cut the 12-point lead to 7. We went to Lopez in the post for a score. Good call… A banked in three, a layup and FT, the Lakers led by 1. No timeout on an out of bounds play and we forced up and missed a long three, which the Magic scored off of to take a 1-point lead. Timeout now with 5 seconds left… Lopez fouled in the post with 0.6, made both FTs. Was hoping they’d call his number and they did… Randle in for D now with 0.6… Clock started early, so it was a jumpball at center court. That iced the game for good…
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2018 10:55 pm    Post subject:

first
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Shaber
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2018 11:08 pm    Post subject:

Lakers choking at the end of the game again. Second game in a row.

I'd understand if it were rookies, but there are IT, Lopez, KCP in the mix. And if IT says these three are among those who do not know how to win...
But maybe that's what tanking for several years does to a team.

Thanks, DB!
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2018 11:10 pm    Post subject:

Thanks DB
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2018 11:24 pm    Post subject:

Thanks DB. Great write up as always. Least satisfying win of the season. Still, worst win of the season beats any loss. Next few games will be tough. Heal up BI. We miss you Josh Hart.
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2018 11:27 pm    Post subject:

I will take any kind of W. We are not in position to complain. With 2 important players out I am happy. (bleep) call anyway at the end.
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2018 11:44 pm    Post subject:

blackmamba08 wrote:
I will take any kind of W. We are not in position to complain. With 2 important players out I am happy. (bleep) call anyway at the end.


As Lou Boudreau said: "Ya gotta beat the bums."

Thanks, DB.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2018 12:45 am    Post subject:

Good game by Lopez (despite having no rebounds LOL). Kudos to the Lakers for feeding him for the last shot because that was gutsy.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2018 1:33 am    Post subject:

Without a closer and a low post presence on offense, finishing games apparently is the next lesson these kids will have to learn quickly.

IT definitely helps but the team doesn't know how to play with him (kind of like playing with The Black Mamba) hence they stopped moving and watched him.

Thanks for the writeup, DB!
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2018 2:28 am    Post subject:

Thanks DB
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2018 2:41 am    Post subject:

Good writeup DB! I would add this though under Brook Lopez - 0 Rebounds.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2018 3:03 am    Post subject:

Thanks DB

Seemed like a good game plan.

Another bad start but we overcame that.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2018 4:02 am    Post subject:

It was ugly, but a W is a W. This team gotta learn how to close
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2018 4:32 am    Post subject:

Sloppy Lakers and Walton have to get much better
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2018 5:02 am    Post subject:

This W got us to a positive home-record. We're 16-15 at Staples now.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2018 5:46 am    Post subject:

Thanks DB!
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2018 5:54 am    Post subject:

rwongega wrote:
Good writeup DB! I would add this though under Brook Lopez - 0 Rebounds.

That's a historical 0 rebounds.

Thanks DB!
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2018 5:56 am    Post subject:


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2018 6:00 am    Post subject:

Thanks DB! An exhausting day for me and I missed the 1st qtr (lucky me). Was dozing off at points in the game but saw the ugly finish. I'll take the win!
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2018 6:10 am    Post subject:

As far as the last possession goes, the clock malfunction hurt the Lakers just as much as the Magic. It would not have been any more fair if the Magic got another try and made a game winner. If the clock operated correctly, we win the game. Plus, the refs got the call right according to the rule book. It was an odd circumstance that is guaranteed to be unfair to one of the teams. Thus, the jump ball.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2018 7:37 am    Post subject:

Thanks DB...
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2018 8:22 am    Post subject:

Was I the only one who saw Randle take a day off on the defensive end?

He was standing watching a couple of times. They took the game too easy and it nearly come back to haunt them.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2018 8:38 am    Post subject:

^I saw some sideline reports quoted late in last night's game thread that he was sick yesterday. Could have had something to do with how he played and carried himself on the bench, and also why Walton chose to go with Lopez scoring down low at the end of the game instead of going Randle like he normally would.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2018 9:00 am    Post subject:

TooMuchMajicBuss wrote:
^I saw some sideline reports quoted late in last night's game thread that he was sick yesterday. Could have had something to do with how he played and carried himself on the bench, and also why Walton chose to go with Lopez scoring down low at the end of the game instead of going Randle like he normally would.


Yeah i just read that too. That will account for his play. He is on a groove right now i will hate for him to take days off. The different between Nick Young and Steph Curry is consistency.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2018 9:23 am    Post subject:

Some of the +/- are interesting in this game. Randle, while having an off night, was still a +3 but Lopez was a -15? Strange game.

Anyhoo, thanks DB.
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