An enemy of the
It stayed away for a handful of days, allowing the creation of a modest two-game win streak, but it returned Friday, bad breath, crooked teeth and everything.
The Lakers' defense was dreadful again in a 140-106 loss to the
"Dumb plays," was the way Lakers Coach
That's four times since March they've done something like this, letting Minnesota, the Clippers and Houston gouge them for more than 140 points. Before that, the Lakers hadn't given up 140 points in a regulation game since November 1993.
The Lakers (3-10) almost created more bad history for themselves, close to matching their largest loss ever to Dallas (36 points) until Jordan Clarkson's dunk with 7.9 seconds to play. They did fail in a less egregious way, losing a franchise-record fourth consecutive regular-season game to the Mavericks.
Dirk Nowitzki (23 points),
The Lakers did a better job defensively their first two games of this trip, holding Houston to 92 without
It might have been that streak, a pittance for a franchise that once won 33 in a row, that cost the Lakers against Dallas.
"You know what? Maybe in that locker room, guys were satisfied with the last two wins and just took this one for granted, started looking forward to going home," Scott said. "You can't do that if you want to be competitive in this league."
Not to be omitted were the shortcomings on offense.
"You try to kind of work your way through it a little bit, but everything's short," Bryant said. "It's just one of those 36-year-old [hiccups]."
It was obviously not the Lakers' night when Bryant missed his first eight shots and Young his first four.
The Lakers' defense against three-point shooters has been superficial at best, a trend that somehow worsened with the Mavericks making 18 of 35 from behind the arc (51.4%).
"The teams that we really struggle with are teams that have a lot of shooters," Bryant said. "Teams that really spread the floor and shoot the three and shoot it well, those are the teams that are blowing us out."