Lakers are something less than Super in ugly 92-80 loss to Knicks

Lakers are something less than Super in ugly 92-80 loss to Knicks
Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony tries to score on a drive down the lane against Lakers center Robert Sacre during a game last season. (Seth Wenig / Associated Press)

Before the big football game Sunday, the Lakers staged their own event: the Super Bore.

They nearly got outscored by Carmelo Anthony in the third quarter, shot 35.5% in the game and, of course, lost to the New York Knicks, 92-80, in a semi-filled Madison Square Garden.

The Lakers (13-35) are obviously a bad team, but they lost to one with a more pathetic record (10-38) while somehow managing a total of one assist from their five starters.

Quick recap: There were five players in the Lakers' starting lineup. They helped a teammate make a basket exactly once.


ESPN had the foresight to boot this game from its coverage, and TNT can now rest easy after already canceling its broadcast of the rematch March 12 in Los Angeles.


Pretty much everybody was off the mark for the Lakers — Robert Sacre missed all six of his shots, Wayne Ellington was two for 12 and Wesley Johnson was four for 12 — and there was more bad injury news for them.


Nick Young sat out because of a sprained ankle and then Jordan Hill left in the first quarter because of what he called a strained right hip flexor.


In the phrase that Lakers fans have grown to hate, Hill will be evaluated Monday. He moved very slowly in the locker room afterward and said he was told he would miss anywhere from two days to two weeks.

With Hill sidelined, the Lakers' second-half starting lineup was the surreal quintet of Jordan Clarkson, Ellington, Sacre, Ryan Kelly and Tarik Black.

Par for the game: A T-shirt gun held by a Knicks cheerleader accidentally went off in a tunnel a few minutes before a fourth-quarter timeout. An orange T-shirt flew toward the scoreboard and dropped onto the court during play.

The clock was stopped, the T-shirt was scooped up, and the game proceeded, unfortunately for the Lakers.

The lack of ball movement was excruciating to watch. Clarkson had the lone assist among the starting five. He also had 19 points.

"When we get to the point where we try to do it on our own, we're not very good. Period," Lakers Coach Byron Scott said. "We looked at New York's record and thought, 'I can come out and get mine.' And we got ourselves in a lot of trouble doing that."

Anthony got his in the third quarter, when he tied the Lakers in scoring — 18 points each for the Knicks' star and the team that wooed him unsuccessfully in free agency last July.

A Knicks fan summed up what almost everybody was thinking in the fourth quarter: "Let's go watch the Super Bowl, Melo! This is over!" he yelled from the upper reaches of the arena.

The victories have been numbingly rare for Knicks Coach Derek Fisher, though he earned his first against the franchise with which he won five championship rings as a player.

It was also a good day for Knicks President Phil Jackson, who smiled as he slipped into the Lakers' locker room afterward to share a few minutes with longtime trainer Gary Vitti.

Jeremy Lin still has a following here, obviously traced to his wild two-month burst with the Knicks in 2012.

He had seven assists Sunday but made one of three shots and had four turnovers.

"Wasn't good," Scott said. "I thought that obviously he could have played a lot better, just like about eight or nine other guys could have."

Lin recently was benched an entire game for the first time in almost three years. He has since moved ahead of Ronnie Price on the depth chart but remains behind Clarkson, a rookie.

There's one thing that can't be taken from Lin.

"Every time I come back, I always have great memories," he said while surrounded by still-intrigued New York media members. "With these fans at the Garden, that was very special to me and I'll always cherish that."

Not much else for him to treasure Sunday. Or for his teammates.

Twitter: Mike_Bresnahan