Thursday, July 30, 2015

Struggling Lakers keep on losing

CHICAGO—Kobe Bryant couldn’t restrain himself after this one.
It wasn’t just that the Lakers lost again. It was how they did it, where they did it, and he simply was seething.

He even put out a call to ditch coach Mike D’Antoni’s up-tempo style and post up more after Pau Gasol got moved into a reserve role.
“We’re going to have to look at some things,” Bryant said after L.A. lost 95-83 at Chicago last night.
“We’re going to have to change something,” he stressed. “Probably going to have to post the ball a lot more, slow the game down a lot more.
“That’s just my intuition, but that’s my gut right now,” Bryant added.
“I have to take a look at the film again, but we’re definitely going to have to change something.”
Kirk Hinrich scored a season-high 22 points, and Marco Belinelli added 15, as the Bulls pulled away down the stretch to beat the struggling Lakers.
Belinelli came up big in the closing minutes, scoring eight points during an 18-4 run that broke a 75-75 tie and sent the Lakers to their ninth loss in 11 games.
He started it by hitting two free throws after getting fouled by Dwight Howard with 6:54 to go and then wrapped two three-pointers around a lay-up by L.A.’s Earl Clark, making it 89-79 with 2:27 left.
The Lakers now have dropped six-straight on the road, and this one came after D’Antoni made that lineup switch.
He replaced Gasol with Clark, but the slide continued on a night when Bryant and Howard mostly were non-factors.
D’Antoni made the switch because he wanted a quicker lineup. Even so, it was an eye-opening move, considering Gasol scored 25 at Toronto on Sunday.
“It isn’t against him, it’s better for us right now,” D’Antoni said before the game.
“We’re going to try to work through it and see what we can do.”
Steve Nash led the Lakers with 18 points, but Bryant finished with just 16 on 7-of-22 shooting.
That ended a run of 24 games with 20 or more points.
Elsewhere in the NBA, Atlanta beat Minnesota 104-96, Indiana nipped Memphis 82-81, New Orleans downed Sacramento 114-105, Houston upended Charlotte 100-94, and Brooklyn trimmed New York 88-85.
Golden State bounced the L.A. Clippers 106-99, San Antonio beat Philadelphia 90-85, and Washington downed Portland 98-95.

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