The Los Angeles Lakers were coming off two of the more dreadful performances in franchise history. On Thursday lost by 48 points to the Los Angeles Clippers and the very next night allowed 77 points in the first half against the Denver Nuggets.
Sunday’s game didn’t offer much of a reprieve as the Lakers faced the Oklahoma City Thunder. During the last week Los Angeles allowed 128.5 points per game and after the 48 point blowout general manager met with coach Mike D’Antoni. Bringing rumors the organization may fire the embattled coach.
It seemed like another blowout loss was in store as in the second the Lakers trailed by 18. Yet, today was a different story as Jodie Meeks channeled Kobe Bryant with a 42 point performance. He scored 10 points during a 21-5 run and at halftime trailed by five. It was more of the same in the third as Meeks outscored Oklahoma City 20 to 19 in the third quarter.
Meeks went 11-18 from the field, 6-11 from beyond the arc and 14-14 from the free throw line and he added four steals and two rebounds to go along with 42 points. Pau Gasol chipped in with 20 points and 11 rebounds, Jordan Farmar and Ryan Kelly each chipped in with 12 points.
Defensively the Lakers did a great job of harassing Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook who together combined for 47 points, 20 assists, 17 rebounds and three steals. The duo turned the ball over 13 times and went 15-42 from the field, 6-21 from the three-point line and 11-16 from the free throw line. SergeIbaka had a strong game with 21 points and 15 rebounds and guard Reggie Jackson added 14 points and nine rebounds.
Durant recorded his third triple-double of the season in the loss and are now in a three-way tie for the best record in the NBA. The Lakers improved their record to 22-42.