It was the perfect storm of negatives for the Lakers. They just came off a much-spirited effort against their hallway rivals. Their bench saw extended action, including the final 15 minutes of the game. They were on the backside of a back-to-back, matched up against one of the most energetic teams in one of the loudest arenas. And in an all-too-quick reality check, the Lakers fell fast and hard back to Earth in Golden State Wednesday night. The Warriors started fast and efficient and only got faster and more efficient as they trounced the Lakers 125-94.
It was a shooting clinic for the Warriors, and most specifically Klay Thompson, as they were firing on all cylinders in their season opener at Oracle Arena. Thanks in large part to a career high 38 points in just 31 minutes by Thompson, the Warriors blew the game open in the second and third quarters, scoring 70 points across that span. The Lakers never offered much of a fight, looking exhausted and unmotivated from the opening tip.
Jodie Meeks, who stepped in the starting line-up with the injury to Steve Nash, led the starters in scoring with 14 points on 4 of 8 shooting. Meeks was one of seven Lakers in double figures, but it wasn’t an efficient night for the Lakers, who finished below 39.3% from the field. Pau had another decent outing, finishing with 12 points and 7 rebounds in just 21 minutes of action. The Bench Mob, who saw memorably took over the game for the Lakers, couldn’t replicate their performance. While they poured in 52 points off the bench, they couldn’t get the same defensive stops, nor create the same amount of energy and never controlled the game.
Xavier Henry once again led the bench mob in scoring, pouring in 14 points, but his 4 of 11 shooting was a microcosm of the Lakers night. Jordan Farmar (12), Wesley Johnson (11), and Chris Kaman (11) all finished in double figures off the bench, but the numbers were padded by a non-competitive fourth quarter.
From the get-go, the Warriors looked every bit as motivated as last night’s Lakers, playing suffocating defense, nailing seemingly ever three, and dominating the game. Golden State was hardly tested and gave their fans a show with nifty passing and red-hot shooting. Thompson never let the Lakers off the hook, nailing a variety of jumpers and lay-ups en route to his historic night. David Lee added 24 points of his own and 11 Warriors scored in total on the night.
The Lakers will have a days rest before their next action when they host the San Antonio Spurs. The game will tip off at 7:30 Pacific, 10:30 Eastern.