What a bizarre night it was back in November, the
There were no such theatrics Sunday in the rematch. No laughs. No good times for the Lakers. No victory.
If the Lakers can't beat the Knicks (see last Thursday) or a shell of the Hawks' team, who can they beat?
The answer, as many already know, is not many teams.
The Lakers are now 17-48, on target for their worst season ever.
"Maybe they're scared of contact, I don't know. [I'm] serious," Scott said. "I've asked them. Some of it is the guard's responsibility to make sure they set the guy up but when he does, the big [man] has to take the responsibility of setting screens."
And from big man Tarik Black: "If he's saying we're not setting enough screens, then we need to get better at it."
The Lakers appeared to get a break when Atlanta rested starters
But Dennis Schroder, typically a backup, had 24 points and 10 assists as the Hawks' starting point guard.
One of the reserves who was promoted Sunday was Kent Bazemore, a member of the Lakers for a brief stretch last season before signing a two-year, $4-million contract with Atlanta last summer. He had 11 points against his former team.
Like plenty of people, Scott respected the attitude of the Hawks, short-handed or not.
"They play the game the way it should be played. They play without an agenda," he said. "The bottom line for them is winning."
Jordan Clarkson didn't shoot the greatest, making four of 13 shots and scoring 10 points, but he had a career-high eight rebounds and added six assists before fouling out.
The rookie keeps logging a lot of minutes, trying to add subtle improvements to his game.
"This is great for him," Scott said beforehand. "He needs to keep learning as he goes along each day, what he can do in this league and what people are going to do against him.
"The best thing about the kid — when he falls, he gets back up. He doesn't lay down. He just gets back up and he just keeps playing hard."