Lakers Go From Bad to Major Embarrassment

A bad as the Lakers’ looked in their exhibition game last Thursday against the Golden State Warriors, it was far, far worse last night. With Stephen Curry scoring 12 points in the first 2-1/2 minutes of the game, the Warriors built a 24-5 lead by the seven minute mark, and the Lakers gave up 39 first-quarter points in total, and never looked up as they lost by 41. With Steve Nash paying all of 12 minutes – and going 0-5 from the field – and with now both Jeremy Lin and Jordan Clarkson injured, the rest of the point guard time was relegated to borderline journeyman Ronnie Price, and he provided one of the legendary franchises’ most embarrassing moments ever seen throughout its long and storied history.

Price, a nine-year veteran who has played for five different teams despite never having averaged as many as five points per game in any season and who is a lifetime 38% shooter, had the ball in the front court, and as he was being guarded by Andre Iguodala, he lost not just the ball, but also a shoe, and as Iguodala raced by him, Price picked up his shoe, and threw it at the Warrior’s guard. It was not as violent an act as it was just plain stupid, certainly not as violent as this famous shoe-throwing incident:

A close second on the embarrassment scale is the fact that in the 32 years that the Lakers have kept track of preseason stats, last night’s game was the second-worse loss they’ve had, “bettered’ only by a 1984 trouncing by 42 points at the hands of Portland.

So, how much trouble are the Lakers in if they actually have to depend on Price during the regular season? With new coach Byron Scott counting on Nash to play as much as possible [insert laugh track here] and with Lin presumably healthy enough to get the most minutes, another point guard is still absolutely essential, and the rookie Clarkson may not be up to the task, especially if he misses significant time leading up to the start of his first regular season, or into his first regular season. As of now, with Kendall Marshall and Jordan Farmar having

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found new homes elsewhere, that means Price. I wonder where Manny Harris is right now? And what happened to those two young, talented guys they got from Golden State for Steve Blake?

The non-existent Lakers' team defense, that new coach Scott told everyone would be a priority area for improvement, was a close second in the embarrassment category, as for
the second game in a row the Warriors were allowed to shoot 56% from the floor. In this game, their five starters combined to shoot 62%, actually down from the 68% they made on Thursday night. By contrast, the Lakers’ starters, including guys bearing such household names as Bryant and Nash, hit on 12 of 43, a sterling 28%.

If the team did have a positive in the game, it was probably the play of Robert Sacre, who tied for the team lead in scoring with 12 pints on five-of-nine shooting, plus putting in two-of-two from the line, pulling down five rebounds, and committing only two fouls in 27 minutes of playing time. Scare is the only true center on the team, and the Lakers will absolutely need him to contribute solid minutes during the season if they are to have any respectability at all.

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