When the Golden State Warriors came out in a 7-0 run to start the night against losing star Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James, the game seemed to be exactly the kind of loss for defeat that many were predicting as soon as it was announced that James would lose the game for "cargo management" after playing 40 minutes in an overtime victory over the Los Angeles Clippers on Thursday.
But even without James and veteran center Tyson Chandler, the Lakers fought bravely against the two defending champions, scrapping and leading the way to a 78-69 lead in the third quarter before being outscored 46-23 to the end. to the Warriors, 115-101, in a game that was even closer than most predicted.
Rajon Rondo was huge for the Lakers to keep things relatively close, masterfully control the game and dictate the offense for the Lakers to finish with 12 points, 11 assists and 8 rebounds in a full effort.
Brandon Ingram also continued his strong recent streak, scoring 20 points, and (perhaps) increasing his commercial value in the process. Someone sends these highlights to Dell Demps!
In the end, however, Golden State is simply unfair. Five All-Stars start last season, and even if they complain and complain about an unpleasant amount (something Josh Hart opposed when drawing a technical double with Kevin Durant in the second half), they're still good enough like to play. for three quarters and then press a different gear for five minutes and retrieve a game.
Stephen Curry hit three after three in the fourth quarter to finish with 14 points after scoring 2 points in the first three quarters, Durant scored 21 points on his own and the Dubs took a copy.
THE. It was never likely that he won this game without LeBron, and yes, they need every victory at this time. Still, it is intellectually dishonest to criticize the Lakers overcome by the effort they showed tonight, and this team deserves credit for giving us a competitive game to get rid of our Saturday night instead of the boring road we all expected.
The Lakers will play next Tuesday, and there will surely be many more commercial rumors fireworks before then. Stay tuned with Silver Screen and Roll (and our Lakers trade rumor tracker) until then.
For more information about the Lakers, subscribe to the Silver Screen and Roll podcast at iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher or Google Podcasts. All statistics by NBA.com Y Basketball-Reference.com. You can follow Harrison on Twitter on @hmfaigen.