The Los Angeles Lakers came off after a very short two-game road trip to play one of the worst teams in the NBA in the Orlando Magic. Sure, most would believe that the Lakers would blow this team out, but with the list of bad teams that fit Orlando’s characteristics, who knew what would happen. Anthony Davis sat out his second straight game because of lingering knee soreness.
After racing out to a 7-0 lead, the Lake Show took a nap in the first quarter giving up a 19-4 run to fall behind the Magic going into halftime. In the third quarter, the Magic showed why they have the fifth-worst offense scoring the ball and how they give up the most points in defense.
The Lakers added to the Magic’s league-leading loss total by dismissing them 106-94.
Fun fact for the Lakers: There was a time that Los Angeles couldn’t beat anyone by double digits to start the season. Now they have tallied four straight wins by double digits.
The good from the Los Angeles Lakers’ win:
LeBron James was just…LeBron!
Sure there is a caveat that this performance was done over a bunch of players that might have less than five years experience in the NBA, but send all complaints to Adam Silver and the scheduling committee. LeBron James absolutely played cat and mouse with every Magic player that was put in front of him.
At halftime, he was seen talking to Lakers assistant coach, David Fizdale as the rest of the team went to the locker room. Something must have clicked because LeBron exploded in the scoring column in the third quarter with 14 points. At one point, he scored seven of eight field goals for the team overall. He even went back into the time machine with an impressive chase-down block that caromed almost to halfcourt.
LeBron James dominated the game with a triple-double, collecting 30 points (12-20 shooting!), 11 rebounding and 10 assists. When the Lake Show put their gears in neutral in the last quarter, he made sure that overall it didn’t contribute to another loss.
Talen Horton-Tucker really played well for the first time in weeks.
THT really came back from his hand injury on fire for the first couple of games, but lately, his offensive contributions had tailed off. In this game, he really returned to the level of play that the Lakers are used to.
Talen Horton-Tucker finished with 19 points (7-14 shooting and 3-6 from beyond the arc!), 3 assists and 6 steals. He was one of the main reasons that the Lakers got their fast break going by combining with LeBron James running hard in their respective lanes.
There is confidence brewing here now that Talen is getting his legs under him. His swagger was evident as he played both ends of the floor and LeBron noticed as they combined to keep the offense rolling throughout the game.
The third quarter!
If there was an example of a complete defensive assault on an NBA team, this was it. Understand the Lakers were down three points at halftime. Man, someone call 911. This DeAndre Jordan alley-oop dunk was the bow to one of the most dominant seven to eight-minute stretches of the entire NBA season…seriously.
- The Los Angeles Lakers went on a 23-0 run.
- The Orlando Magic missed 16 straight shots.
- The Magic shot…get this…2-23 from the field.
- It bears repeating that LeBron James finished with 14 points.
- Overall the Lakers outscored the Magic 36-12 in the third quarter!
When the quarter started, the Orlando Magic was winning 52-49. When the quarter ended the games were basically over with the Los Angeles Lakers winning 85-62.
If there was an example of a massive momentum swing in an NBA game…well keep reading.