LAL 111 ORL 95
Coming off probably the best win of the season against the Miami Heat, the Lakers came into this Sunday night looking to win against the other Florida team the Orlando Magic. Earlier in the season, the Lakers lost badly to both the Heat and the Magic but after scrapping with the Heat last game and winning, the team was focused on winning their second straight game. Some good news before the game, Jordan Clarkson was not suspended after his intense confrontation with Heat guard Goran Dragic. Dragic also was not suspended, as the Heat battled the Clippers today.
Early in this game, it was a back and forth shooting display by both teams, as the Lakers and Magic shot over 60% in the first 7 minutes of the game. Defense and execution was the name of the game for the Lakers; they finished the first quarter scoring 40 points. The Magic attempted to make this a game in the second quarter, but the Lakers still found a way to pull away from the game by causing turnovers and executing perfectly on offense. In the second half, the Lakers absolutely clamped down on the Magic’s offense in the third quarter, only allowing 9 points on 2/20 shooting. Obviously the Lakers were able to close the game and earn their revenge win against the Magic 111-95.
This was the second game in a row where Brandon Ingram matched his career high 17 points and did it extremely efficiently (6/9 shooting). Ingram finished 17 points, 3 rebounds, and 2 assist. More importantly, it is comforting to see that Ingram is beginning to find his calling card in the league as he looks more and more confident in his skills. You can see that he has stopped old bad habits and has begun to use more of his length.
D’Angelo Russell was awesome tonight and he has recently been on a tear (except for field goal percentage). Ever since Julius Randle called for Russell to be more aggressive, you have seen the clear evolution in Russell’s game as he has now begun to focus more on scoring, which opens up for his teammates to score as well. Russell tonight had a near triple double with 17 points, 8 rebounds, 7 assist and 3 steals but his best stat line was his field goal percentage – 7/10 (70%).
Like D’Angelo Russell, Julius Randle has also been on a tear as of late and even got recognition from the NBA that they believe Randle (when focused) is the best player on the Lakers and is one of the most versatile power forward on the rise, which is true. Randle has been playing great all around basketball, tonight he finished with 19 points, 9 rebounds, and 5 assist.
The Lakers next game is on Tuesday as they will host the Portland Trail Blazers at 7:30 playing time.