Lakers vs. Clippers: Quick Thoughts On The Battle For Los Angeles

First of all, it was a great, hard-fought, come-from-behind win for the Clippers.

The Lakers successfully limited Blake Griffin to 7-for-20 shooting, but he still found a way to grab yet another double-double with 18 points and 15 boards.

The Lakers played a good game, but did not play up to par with how they played on their seven-game win streak.

First, they expertly picked their shots throughout the game, except in the fourth quarter, where it mattered most. Part of the reason they could not close it out was because they abandoned the gameplan and began settling for bad three-pointers when the game suddenly got close (they were 3-for-20 in the game).

Second, they are still struggling with quick guards, which has been their Achilles heel in the past. Eric Gordon exploded for 30 points on a very effective 13-for-20 shooting night. Rotations were slow. The big men were hampered by foul trouble (Gasol fouled out, Bynum and Odom each had four).

It was a forgettable game defensively.

Third, back to the fourth quarter shot selection. Settling for the three did not pay off, as the Lakers went just 1-for-8 in the fourth quarter. They comparatively took just three shots in the paint during this time, going 2-for-3.

They settled for the outside shot, and they got burned in the end.

Credit is due the Clippers, who played a hard-fought game and received a much-deserved win, but this was not one of the Lakers' better games. They need to play more consistently and more aggressively night in and night out if they are going to hit the ground running in the playoffs.

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