Los Angeles Lakers eliminated from the starting position, currently 11th in the Western Conference

DALLAS – For the first time since the first week of the regular season, the Los Angeles Lakers find themselves outside the play-in after Tuesday night’s 128-110 loss to the Dallas Mavericks.

Playing without LeBron James (left ankle sprain) and Anthony Davis (right leg sprain), the Lakers were 37 points behind as Luka Doncic scored 30 points three times in the first three quarters (34 points, 12 points) rebounds, 12 assists).

“We weren’t playing well enough and playing with enough toughness, IQ, intelligence, focus and fighting,” Lakers coach Frank Vogel said. “So it’s unacceptable and just a poor performance. Coach, players, everyone.”

Los Angeles is 11th in the Western Conference with seven games remaining. The Lakers, at 31-44, have the same record as the No 10 Spurs, but San Antonio owns the goal.

Looking ahead to the final turn, the Lakers led 4-10 against their remaining six opponents. (They played the Denver Nuggets twice.) The Spurs are leading 5-11 against their remaining six enemies. (San Antonio played the Portland Trail Blazers twice.) The Nuggets (45-31) finished sixth in the Western Conference standings. The Blazers (27-48) are No 12 and will be without their star, Damian Lillard, for the rest of the season.

Vogel said James and Davis will both be reevaluated on Thursday to determine their readiness for Los Angeles’ game at the Utah Jazz on Thursday night. Davis, who has been sidelined since February 16, is targeting a return Friday at home to the New Orleans Pelicans No 9, sources told ESPN.

Tuesday’s performance was as bad as it was for the Lakers in a disappointing season. The 82 points they gave up in the first half were the second most allowed points in the first half in franchise history, narrowly avoiding the record set when the Boston Celtics hanged them 83 points in the first half. on February 27, 1959, according to ESPN. Statistics & Information.

Los Angeles’ 26-point halftime deficit on Tuesday plus the 28 points New Orleans overtook them in Sunday’s second half represents the worst point spread, minus 54, of the second half. for the Lakers in the shot clock era.

“Leaders are results,” Vogel said when asked if it was imperative for the Lakers to be knocked out of the playoffs. “We have to focus on the process and the work and the things that will lead to the next victory. That is the only place where we will focus.”

Russell Westbrook, who has 25 points, 8 rebounds and 6 assists but has featured in Los Angeles with 25 points in his 32 minutes on the ring, added a controversial post-match exchange with a reporter on his season résumé.

When Westbrook was asked what changes to the Lakers now that they have to fight to get back into the play-in tournament, he replied: “Nothing, man. Nothing.”

After a follower asked why nothing had changed, Westbrook got up from his seat at the interview table and said, “What do you think should be changed?”

The reporter suggested “winning” as an answer, and Westbrook hit back by asking, “Fine. Do you have the answer to winning? Do you have the answer to winning?”

As the exchange continued for a few more minutes, Westbrook noticed a video camera headed his way and changed his tone, giving the reporter a half hug before leaving the room.

“We’re great,” he said. “You all have to record that.”

The Lakers are 4-13 since the All-Star break, on track to become the franchise’s second-lowest All-Star break win percentage in team history.

“We just got slapped on the butt. Let’s be frank,” said Stanley Johnson, the Lakers forward. “So morale or whatever, they kicked our ass. That’s pretty much 30 points the whole game. I don’t know how else you’d put it. We had to get back to that. should be so much better.”

https://www.espn.com/nba/story/_/id/33627432/los-angeles-lakers-stumble-play-position-now-11th-western-conference Los Angeles Lakers eliminated from the starting position, currently 11th in the Western Conference

Luke Plunkett

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