Los Angeles Lakers: Not Getting Any Better Before the Playoffs

Watching this Los Angeles Laker team turn the ball over time after time, leading to fast-break points in the other direction, must frustrate Laker fans 54 games into the season.

Against Charlotte last Saturday, it was Steve Blake with back-to-back silly turnovers that led to fast-break points.

Against Golden State on Sunday, it was comedy of errors punctuated by so many silly turnovers and fast-break points that Golden State, one of the worst teams in the league, was able to come back and threaten the Lakers.

The Lakers were no better against New Jersey on Tuesday night, losing a 17-point lead in the fourth quarter. New Jersey tied the score with 1:30 remaining before Kobe Bryant broke it with a fall-away jumper. The Lakers pulled it out in the end after New Jersey missed a free throw and they survived a sloppy last 30 seconds redeemed only by Kobe’s three-pointer.

The only consistent thing about the Lakers is their sloppy inconsistency.

When it isn’t turnovers, it's giving up big leads. Against lowly Golden State, Stu Lantz observed, with 1:30 left in the half and the Lakers leading by nine points, that the Lakers needed "to win the last minute and a half by two, three points or so, not let the Warriors win it and go into [the half] with a little of momentum themselves."

After a couple of quick Golden State baskets, Lantz quipped, "So much for the Lakers winning the last minute and a half." The Laker starters gave up eight straight points, reducing their lead to one. However, for a spectacular full-court sprint by Ramon Sessions at the buzzer, the Lakers would have been shut out in the final minutes. After all their superiority on the boards, the Lakers only led by three at the half.

For the half, the Lakers’ bench outscored Golden State’s bench 17-8. With a three-point lead, it meant the Laker starters were outscored by the Warriors’ starte...

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