Los Angeles Lakers go into All-Star break with a loss to Sacramento Kings

March 3, 2021; Sacramento, California, USA; Sacramento Kings forward Harrison Barnes (40) shoots the basketball against Los Angeles Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma (0) during the first quarter at Golden 1 Center. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports
March 3, 2021; Sacramento, California, USA; Sacramento Kings forward Harrison Barnes (40) shoots the basketball against Los Angeles Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma (0) during the first quarter at Golden 1 Center. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports /
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The Los Angeles Lakers finished the first half of the season with a matchup against the Sacramento Kings. The Lake Show was without LeBron James, who did not travel with the team nursing a sore ankle. The Lakers jumped all over Sacramento in the first quarter only to give the lead back with porous defense. In the end, the Lakers go into the All-Star break with a loss. 

Well, this post-game has some good news and some bad news. Let’s start with the good news.

The Good News:

YES! The Los Angeles Lakers are officially finished with the first half of their regular-season schedule! Eight days of no late nights and a whole lot of sleep!

The Bad News:

  • The Lakers lost to the Sacramento Kings 123-120 on Wednesday, losing both games of a back-to-back.
  • They blew a double-digit lead.
  • With this latest loss, the Lakers, at 24-13, are now in the 4th seed in the Western Conference, behind the LA Clippers, Phoenix Suns and Utah Jazz.

The Sacramento Kings were bottoming out coming into this game. Things were so bad that rumors were circulating that if the Lakers blew the Kings out without LeBron James, Luke Walton could be fired. They were that bad.

The good from the Los Angeles Lakers’ loss:

Dennis Schroder came out on fire!

Lake Show Life did not put too much stock in Schroder’s shooting struggles in the two previous games against the Warriors (3-9) and the Suns (6-17) this week. Coming out of the COVID-19 protocols may have thrown off his rhythm.

But he was smoking from the fingers against Sacramento dropping his first four shots from the field. He came out with confidence and got very comfortable on the fast break.

https://twitter.com/Lakers/status/1367315449902292994

Just look how he put DeAaron Fox in a blender and made a smoothie out of him with the perfect look-away move. This is probably the most carefree Dennis has been since his Atlanta Hawks days with LeBron out of the lineup. He had 14 points on 6-8 shooting by the half.

Dennis Schroder had a great night with 28 points and 9 assists.

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope came out on fire!

KCP came into this game scoring 23 points in his last four games. He knocked down his first three shots from the field for the first time since anyone can remember. Yes, the man was on fire. He looked much more decisive with his moves and he looked comfortable for the first time in a very long time. More on KCP later.

Montrezl Harrell got some consistent minutes.

Wow, Montrezl Harrell played hard and with energy in this game. He played very well too? Put these aspects together and the Los Angeles Lakers can get quality production from their power forward. What a concept.

After Vogel’s rotation disaster against Phoenix, the two reportedly had a sit-down and Trezl asked to come off the bench. If he keeps doing this, he can stay as far away from the starting lineup as he wants.

https://twitter.com/SportsCenter/status/1367321844747882496

By halftime, Harrell was shooting 7-10 from the field for 14 points. Why this guy gets the yo-yo minutes is a mystery to the Lake Show Life staff. He finished with 26 points and 13 rebounds.

Kyle Kuzma came out on fire!

Hey, Lakers fans! Are you starting to see a trend here? After being a late scratch the night before, Kyle Kuzma was wheeling and dealing with some buckets of his own. He had 14 points (5-8 shooting!) in 17 minutes in the opening half.

But this guy right here is going to be a rebounding savant the way he is going. He is the Lakers’ best rebounder not named Anthony Davis. Yes, he’s that good. He finished with 25 points and 12 rebounds.

The bad from the Los Angeles Lakers’ loss:

The Lakers’ second-quarter defense was non-existent!

Remember how hot all of the Lakers players listed above were? Well, the Sacramento Kings as a team was hotter than that in the second quarter. The Kings dropped a 40-piece on the Lakers in the second frame. That includes an 8-0 run in a span of 30 seconds.

At one stretch, Sac-town knocked down 11-13 shots. The Lakers dominated the first quarter leading as much as 14 points (27-13) and fell asleep. By the time they woke up to go to the locker room, they were down by two points

Cory Joseph.

Folks, Cory Joseph can’t shoot. No seriously. The Lakers broadcasting team floated the number of 19 percent numerous times during the game. Joseph shot well in this game scoring 14 points on 5-7 shooting. Why is this guy mentioned? The Lakers are NOTORIOUS for letting lesser talented players score in bunches.

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope stopped shooting! 

Remember how hot KCP was coming out of the gate hitting three straight? He shot only one more shot the entire game. This cannot happen for a Lakers starting shooting guard. Caldwell-Pope is going to have to start getting selfish or he needs to go to the bench. His reluctance to shoot is hurting the Lakers a lot more than most realize.

The story from the Los Angeles Lakers’ loss:

Buddy Hield…

Buddy Hield went crazy on the Los Angeles Lakers dropping 29 points and had a stretch when he could not miss!

https://twitter.com/ESPNNBA/status/1367348093931327489

However, the referees missed Hield’s toe on the line on one of those shots behind the arc. That one point that stayed on the scoreboard could have changed the options for the Lakers late in the game.

Lake Show Life’s more in-depth breakdowns will come in Lake Show Life Lessons tomorrow. Keep it locked for the only Los Angeles Lakers post-game report with highlights and in-depth analysis.