The Los Angeles Lakers overcame a horrendous start from the field and at the free throw line but ultimately couldn’t corral Lou Williams or the Clippers in a 118-107 loss. The defeat marked a second in a row without LeBron James and Rajon Rondo.
The Clippers initially failed to take control of the game as the Lakers opened 5-for-17 from the field and made just two of eight free throws. While he struggled at the charity stripe, Brandon Ingram scored 7 points in the first quarter.
The Lakers went into the second trailing by five but mounted a run in some part behind Kyle Kuzma and Ivica Zubac combining to go perfectly on nine free throws. Kuzma scored 10 points in the second quarter, helping spark the Lakers to a 54-51 lead at halftime.
Although Lou Williams beat the buzzer with a 3-pointer to end the second quarter, it was the Lakers who had the early energy and momentum in the third. They stretched their lead to a game-high 10 points, only for the Clippers to quickly cut into the deficit.
As the Lakers offence grew stagnant with a second unit on the floor, Baskets by Williams and a parade to the free throw line amounted to a 9-0 run that gave the Clippers an 82-80 lead heading into the fourth quarter.
That swelled to a 22-0 drought for the Lakers before they scratched on a Tyson Chandler free throw. The Lakers managed to get within 10 points but a turnover led to a Danilo Gallinari 3-pointer that essentially dashed their hopes at a comeback.