South Bay Lakers midseason G League slump

(Photo by Sean Berry/NBAE via Getty Images)
(Photo by Sean Berry/NBAE via Getty Images) /

The South Bay Lakers have found themselves in a slump, losing their last six consecutive games. As a result, the Lakers are now 20th in the league with a 10-15 record.

With the longest current losing streak in the NBA’s G League, the South Bay Lakers haven’t won since December 31, against the Texas Legends. Next, they traveled to South Dakota to play the Sioux Falls Skyforce. Unfortunately, this was the beginning of the end.

The Skyforce started asserting themselves in the second quarter, scoring 31 points and holding South Bay to 16. Mychal Mulder put up 22 points, and Heat 2-way player, Daryl Macon, had 20 points and a career-high 10 rebounds.

While South Bay only lost by 13 points, that deficit could have been cut in half with free throws. The Skyforce shot 74-percent from the line, while the Lakers only shot 53-percent.

Jordan Caroline and Talen Horton-Tucker had 20 points each, while Devontae Cacok had 14 points and 15 rebounds.

Returning home, South Bay faced Texas again. It could have been the result of playing the third game of the week, and traveling to Sioux Falls in between, but South Bay fell again. The Lakers entered halftime with a 14-point lead. However, they weren’t able to maintain that energy in the second half, Legends winning 134-119.

Cacok just barely missed his typical double-double with 22 points and 9 rebounds. Kostas Antetokounmpo put up 18 points, made seven of eight from the field and shot 100-percent from the line.

South Bay returned home afterward to face the Iowa Wolves for a close game, but unfortunately another loss.

The Lakers had the lead heading into halftime again. The two teams remained neck and neck for the following two quarters, with the Lakers leading into the last three minutes of the game. With consistent free-throw shooting by Wolves’ Jordan McLaughlin, Iowa was able to edge out South Bay and win 147-140.

McLaughlin had 31 points in total. Jaylen Nowell also stood out, with 23 points and eight rebounds. James Webb III, Tyus Battle, and Barry Brown also all had 20-plus points each.

South Bay didn’t go down without a battle, though. Kostas Antetokounmpo had a comfortable double-double with 24 points and 12 rebounds. Close behind was Horton-Tucker with 23 points and nine rebounds. In the nature of sharing and consistency, Reggie Hearn, Marcus Allen, Andre Ingram, Javan Felix, Jordan Caroline, and Travis Wear all had between 13-16 points each.

Still at home, the Rio Grande Valley Vipers came to play. Another close matchup, this should have been a win for the Lakers, especially with three players collecting double-doubles, but it still wasn’t enough.

More from Lake Show Life

The Vipers ended the second quarter with the advantage after a 17-point half by Isaiah Taylor. However, with a team push and 15 points from Zach Norvell Jr. alone, the Lakers put up 39 points in the third quarter to get within two points.

The Lakers were edged out in the last 4:28 of the game with Vipers’ Brandon Sampson finishing with 27 points and Taylor with 24 points.

Wear finished with a game-high of 28 points and 12 rebounds. Norvell had 25 points while Horton-Tucker also had 20 points and 10 rebounds but shot 10-of-25. Higher efficiency could have been the difference for the Lakers.

Another Texas team came to visit El Segundo, Ca. when the Lakers played the Austin Spurs on Sunday, January 12. Coming out strong early, the Spurs lead with a 17-point lead at the end of the first quarter. Overall, not a great performance from the Lakers, shooting 39-percent from the field, and just 31-percent from beyond the arc.

Keldon Johnson led the Spurs with 25 points, as Angel Rodriguez was close behind with 21 points. Antetokounmpo had 22 points and 11 rebounds for the Lakers. Horton-Tucker and Caroline both reached double-doubles as well.

To conclude what has been a long two weeks for the Lakers, they played the Oklahoma City Thunder on the road for their sixth consecutive loss. 2020 just hasn’t been their year.

It was a close game going into halftime, but then the Thunder outscored the Lakers 42-21 in the third quarter. South Bay played all 48 minutes of the game though, Horton-Tucker snagging 31 points and 7 rebounds. Hearn had 22 points himself, and Wear had 21points with 10 rebounds. A major factor for the Thunder was Justin Patton‘s 45 points and 13 rebounds.

At this point in the season, with two and a half months left in the season, they are not eliminated from the playoff run, but it will be a grind.

Next. 40 Greatest Lakers Players In Franchise History. dark

Their next game will be on Friday, January 17 against the highly competitive Memphis Hustle. This would be the perfect game to prove they are still in this, it will just take a coordinated effort to pull off.