The Lakers ended a two-game losing streak on Thursday night with a 104-96 victory over the Indiana Pacers at Staples Center.
Here are five takeaways from the game:
1) Kentavious Caldwell-Pope ran hard on the wing late in the fourth quarter, his effort paying off when LeBron James found the 6-foot-5 guard for a three-pointer that pushed the Lakers’ lead to 10 points.
Caldwell-Pope’s sharp three-point shooting was much needed for a Lakers team that made only seven of 24 from long range, and that was after making three of five to open the first quarter.
Caldwell-Pope was three-for-five shooting from three-point range, a big reason why he finished with 11 points off the bench. He was four for seven overall from the field.
Conversely, the Pacers showed the Lakers how it’s supposed to be done from the three-point line. Indiana made 43.5% of its three-pointers, often with open looks.
2) For the second consecutive game, Michael Beasley was in Lakers coach Luke Walton’s rotation.
Beasley played 8 minutes and 52 seconds against the Pacers. He scored six points on three-for-four shooting from the field.
Beasley also had two rebounds, one assist and four fouls.
3) Lonzo Ball had just two points and missed five of his six shots, and yet he was still pretty effective. Ball contributed eight rebounds, four assists and two blocked shots.
He was a plus-nine in the plus-minus category, in part because his defense was solid during his 33:40 of play.
Ball got to finish the game as well, playing 7:28 in the fourth quarter.
4) One way for the Lakers to be a good defensive team is to keep blocking shots. They had 11 blocks against the Pacers, seven in the first quarter.
JaVale McGee, again, protected the rim for the Lakers, blocking four shots. Brandon Ingram had three blocks and Ball and Tyson Chandler had two each.
5) The Lakers won the rebounding battle, and that went a long way in helping them escape with the victory. They out-rebounded the Pacers 50-44.