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Another loss puts Lakers in deep hole to even make playoffs

Jan 9, 2013, 12:15 AM EST

Los Angeles Lakers v Houston Rockets Getty Images

For the past five years, it has taken at least 45 wins to make the playoffs in the Western Conference (technically Utah had 36 wins last season because of the lockout, but that was a 45-win pace). Coming into Tuesday night, Denver was the eight seed in the West and they are on pace for 46 wins.

For the Lakers to get to 45 wins this season they will need to go 30-18 the rest of the way. That stretch includes the Lakers annual “Grammy” trip when Taylor Swift and fun. kick the Lakers out of Staples for a seven-game road trip.

The Lakers need to start winning games now to even make the playoffs.

They didn’t do that Tuesday night. Playing without Dwight Howard, Pau Gasol and Jordan Hill — all three bigs out with injuries — the Lakers went small and tried to run with the Houston Rockets. The team that plays at the fastest pace in the league.

The result was predictable with the Lakers poor transition defense — a 125-112 Rockets win. That is the fourth straight loss for the Lakers, who have the second night of a back-to-back in San Antonio on Wednesday then host the Thunder on Friday, both games likely without their bigs.

The losing streak could reach six, and the Lakers would need to go 30-16 just to get to 45 wins. Which may not be enough to make the playoffs.

Tuesday night the Lakers looked plucky to start the game as Steve Nash was picking apart the Rockets (especially when they sideline trapped him), and starting center Robert Sacre looked pretty good and had a dunk. The Lakers early lead stretched out to 18-4 as Metta World Peace and Darius Morris hit threes.

But at the end of the day the Lakers were going to need to have good transition defense to win this game and they haven’t shown that consistently all season.

By late in the second quarter the game was close again as Carlos Delfino seemed to always be wide open. The Rockets went on an 18-2 third quarter run and the Lakers tried but could never close the gap after that.

James Harden attacked and tore up the Lakers defense to the tune of 31 points and 9 assists. Sacre tried but the Lakers missed an inside presence to turn away Rockets penetration in the half court.

Kobe was off, scoring 20 but needing 22 shots to do it (but adding 7 assists). World Peace led the Lakers with 24.

It’s a loss the Lakers can have plenty of excuses for, but the time for excuses is past. If they don’t start winning soon Jim Buss can ask Donald Sterling for tips on how to throw a good lottery party.

  1. magicbucs - Jan 9, 2013 at 12:11 AM

    Na na, na na na na, hey heyyyy, goodbye!!!

    • saint1997 - Jan 9, 2013 at 6:31 AM

      you really get cranky and when people start to talk fact about how bad the Lakers records. And enough with the gay slurs you absolute pig, that stuff shouldn’t be tolerated in this society

    • fanofevilempire - Jan 9, 2013 at 7:12 AM

      so they won’t hang #17, but what will your team do.
      Lakers don’t have anything to apologize for, they have carried the league at times for many years, can your team say this.
      Kobe has more rings than some franchises have playoff appearances.

      so basically all the laker haters can suck it!

      • croydsblogs - Jan 9, 2013 at 8:04 AM

        I agree completely. The Lakers have had a great run for 30 years. However, it only too Jimmy Buss 1-1/2 years tol destroy one of the greatest professional sports franchises in history. Because Jimmy Buss is still running the Lakers and who also has given away almost all pf their draft choices for the next five years, it is doubtful the franchise can ever overcome its Jimmy Buss enforced mediocrity. The only reasonable solution is for Jerry Buss to sell the Lakers so as to get the malignancy of Jimmy Buss out of the franchise.

    • spthegr8 - Jan 9, 2013 at 10:14 AM

      @magic”TROLL”
      Man, Kurt must alert you before every Laker post. Cuz you are ALWAY’S the first one too post about the Lakers & they aren’t even your team. You REALLY need too get a LIFE!!!! The sad thing is that, “TROLLING” is apparently your LIFE!!! The Lakers might suck right now, but your life must SUCK even WORSE!!!! Just Saying!!!!

      • progress2011 - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:05 AM

        OR……

        He/she might be self-employed and have people like you work for them, so he/she can manage the business and employees when needed.

        Then take extended breaks, go out for lunch and harass FAKER FANS….

        A person after my own heart…..ahahahah

      • spthegr8 - Jan 9, 2013 at 12:04 PM

        @Progress
        A person after your own heart????? It figure’s you would come and stand up for magic”TROLL”. All of you “TROLL’S” stick together. What, is he Whitney Houston and your Kevin Costner??? Maybe he does work from home or maybe, ALL you BITTER little “TROLL’S” DON’T work, which leaves you ALL with WAY too much time too “TROLL”!!! Either way……. GFY!!!!!!!

      • progress2011 - Jan 9, 2013 at 12:19 PM

        AHAHAHAHAHAHAHA…..

        sp the great – LOSER………YOU MAD….ahahahahah !

        DAG-NABBIT : I have ran thru all my salt ….goin to the store to get more!

        Cause it brings me GREAT JOY to know the salt is burning your wounds as the FAKERS show how lame they are!

        Better get Buss Boy to fork over some cash “under the table” to get another player…like they acquired Gasol for FREE !

        Cause otherwise, you got several months to feel the burn as Non-Faker fans pour on the salt, in copious amounts !

        ahahahahaha

      • spthegr8 - Jan 9, 2013 at 12:56 PM

        @progress
        What a DOUCHE you are. With you sticking up for your fellow “TROLL’S” and your SICK OBSESSION with Kobe. I’m starting too wonder if you are a butt PIRATE??? If you are, that’s fine it’s your life. But if you came out of the closet, you probably wouldn’t be such a BITTER little “TROLL”!!!! It makes sense now. You might need too get more “salt” as you put it. But it seem’s too me, that you got PLENTY OF SUGAR!!!! LMFAO!!!!

      • loungefly74 - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:17 PM

        i dont know, man. having obsessive behavior with “hating” is bad…even disturbing…and i’m serious as a heart attack here. not sure why someone would spend a considerable amount of time hating a team. i mean, i hate the celtics…but i’m not posting or bickering about their demise or shortcomings. yeah, i’ll poke fun but i focus on my teams, ya know?

        magicbucs, i can understand why you hate the lakers, your team is our “farm team for great Centers” (thanks by the way), we destroyed you in the finals and your franchise has never been the same. oh? the Lakers from that point on? yeah…we won again the following year. but thats besides the point.

        but…if your “thang” is to hate on stuff…fine, be my guest. life goes on, fellas. i pray and hope you don’t instill that behavior to your offspring…because there is more to life than spent grueling/stewing/thinking over stuff you don’t care for…

      • badintent - Jan 10, 2013 at 1:07 AM

        @progress2011
        Sssssssh ! Don’t let the cat out of the bag. I’m self employed and chilling during the winter down season for the wedding biz. No more double martini lunches, I just get my olives out of my salad,LOL Got lots of time to mess with Laker and C fansl, the Perfect Storm with all the fake(r) drama and fake tough guy Garnett trying to get a sponorship contract with Kelloggs for some cereal.Guess his agent told him that Lance is out, Kevin is in . HA

  2. dhass22 - Jan 9, 2013 at 12:28 AM

    My Cleveland Cavaliers are taking special interest in this implosion. Due to last year’s Ramon Sessions trade, the Cavs got the Lakers 1st rounder last year (parlayed into Tyler Zeller) and have the right to swap it’s already owned 2013 Miami pick with the LA pick, whichever is lower. Way to go!, Cavs GM Chris Grant, wheelin’ & dealin’. Keeps getting better with every Laker loss.

  3. badintent - Jan 9, 2013 at 12:36 AM

    Got my Turkey Roast Fork AND my suckling pig Fork and stuck both in the Laker’s Upside Down cake.Done. R.I .P. Lakers. Looking forward to the Curry/Paul matchup in the playoffs.

  4. tigershark49 - Jan 9, 2013 at 12:48 AM

    It hurts to see this happen to the lakers and they dont get the lottery pick either. Enjoy laker haters, enjoy. We will be back.

  5. dko83 - Jan 9, 2013 at 3:12 AM

    With that talent.. shameful.

  6. tannethrill - Jan 9, 2013 at 3:36 AM

    They need to make moves and frankly it should start with Kobe.

    • aboogy123456 - Jan 9, 2013 at 8:47 AM

      How does your comment have any likes? Have you seen Kobe play this season? He’s been a true leader, he could easily be complaining to the media like Dwight is but he’s not. He’s carrying this team through injuries.

      So what moves do you suggest they make mr clown GM?

      • unxpexted1 - Jan 9, 2013 at 9:10 AM

        Thats what i keep thinking when I see these assinine comments. “Trade Kobe Trade Kobe” for what? what do you want back or what is feasible. Sure pure hate spewing out just cause of dislike. Least he brings it EVERY night on the court, whether you like him or not you know he’s going on. Trade him? please, smh

      • borderline1988 - Jan 9, 2013 at 9:42 AM

        He sure is carrying this team, straight to a losing record…quite the leader lol.

        There’s no way you can be a top-3 player in the league and have your team be that bad…Lebron’s Cavs, Paul’s Hornets, Wade’s Heat, Howard’s Magic, (when he’s healthy) – these are examples of teams with basically a one-man show which still were playoff teams, and sometimes even Finals teams.

        This is the second time around where Kobe’s team has flopped when he’s the only superstar on the team….

        The difference with Paul, Howard and Lebron is that they elevate their team and make everyone else on the court better…something Kobe simply does not bring to the table. Sure, he’s having a great scoring year, but 30 PPG on its own doesn’t do much. I’d much rather take Lebron’s 26 PPG but also his 7 apg, 7 rpg, and tremendous defense.

      • borderline1988 - Jan 9, 2013 at 9:44 AM

        Let me add that I still think the Lakers can make the playoffs, if everyone is healthy. Their starting 5 is way too good to miss the playoffs.

        My point is only that when you need to start relying on Kobe to carry the team, you’re in trouble.

      • loungefly74 - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:22 PM

        borderline…those 3 players you named have 1…repeat, 1 title between them, and that came last year. lets not pretend those guys did it by themselves. Laker fans root for the Lakers…not just Kobe….and Kobe is not the issue. (salary? well…yeah)

  7. moseskkim - Jan 9, 2013 at 5:28 AM

    its gonna be tough to make the playoffs but im thinking if they can get an 8th spot or so.. they can still do some damage in the playoffs. they still have some time to get the ship right. its just unbelievable if they dont make the playoffs. teams around the lower tier in the west will inevitably struggle. they are not that strong. lakers will have a shot

  8. bucrightoff - Jan 9, 2013 at 7:35 AM

    The Lakers may suck, but not nearly as much as Taylor Swift or fun.

  9. phx1311 - Jan 9, 2013 at 7:42 AM

    Kobe,Steve, and Dwight are on the same team and somehow they are barely doing better than my suns.

    • badintent - Jan 10, 2013 at 12:50 AM

      Amen Brother. Nash will always be a Sun for me, all his MVPs came as a Sun.

  10. themagicfanguy - Jan 9, 2013 at 8:19 AM

    “We have so many rings! So it doesn’t matter that we suck horribly this year!” Lmao, it’s over laker fans. Y’all put together a “super team” and won’t even make the playoffs!

    • spthegr8 - Jan 9, 2013 at 9:59 AM

      @themagicfatguy
      & if anybody would know about missing the playoffs, it an Orlando Tragic fan!!! We aren’t use too this kind of losing. Give us some pointer’s on how you deal with it??? Oh never mind, no need for you too answer that. We see how you deal with it. You just “TROLL” on PBT. How PATHETIC!!!!

  11. unxpexted1 - Jan 9, 2013 at 8:26 AM

    Definitely a sad state of affairs for my lakers. Spurs tonight, OKC Friday then Miami next week. not looking good but I’m a fan so i’m just going to keep holding on hope until its officially over. My Redskins were 3-6 more than halfway through the season and was able to make the playoffs. I know its a diff sport but i’m still holding on. #LakerNation

  12. infectorman - Jan 9, 2013 at 8:26 AM

    Spending more than any team in the league, 14.6 Million more, something is not right in tinsel town.
    Just ask the Steinbrenner, you can’t buy championships, especially with 35+ year old knees.

  13. aboogy123456 - Jan 9, 2013 at 8:41 AM

    What’s frustrating is that the lakers seemed to have turned it around once nash came back. They’ve been playing very well but their early season struggles have put them in a hole. People look at the record but this is still a team with a high ceiling. Now we are just running out of time, and these injuries have really hurt us. Last night was so painful, they were playing so well but absolutely nobody to protect the rim. They would have won if even Jordan Hill could have played. 30-16 is attainable, let’s just try to get lucky and steal one in SA tonight.

  14. ebrownwareagle - Jan 9, 2013 at 8:57 AM

    @themagicfanguy

    Lakers might suck this year might not even make the PlayOffs! But what in the HELL has the Magics EVER WON? Other than getting swept in the Finals and again losing in 5 Games to The LAKERS in the Finals! Ijs! Find something else to do with yourself other than tryn to taunt and organization and its fans, when your team and organization are CAREER LOSERS! No Championships! As a matter of fact KOBE has more Rings total than the Magics have been to Finals period! Now that is what I call FUNNY!

    • eerock41 - Jan 9, 2013 at 9:29 AM

      funny to see laker fans ripping the magic. if it was not for the magic the lakers would not have been able to get the last 2 best big men in the game. i for one think it is great the the lakers are struggling so much, because when the trade went thru for Howard all the laker fans said the championship was in the bag. just cause you have the 2nd or 3rd best team on paper does not mean crap. this team can not play together and as long a kobe is trying to win every game himself they never will be nearly as good as they should.

    • aboogy123456 - Jan 9, 2013 at 9:39 AM

      give them some time eerock before you can definitively say that they can’t play together. They have a new coach and point guard and haven’t even had training camp to learn how to play together. I know it will come and things will start to click but unfortunately injuries are making that process take longer.

  15. omniusprime - Jan 9, 2013 at 9:06 AM

    As long as Dumbtoni is coach the Lakers won’t make the playoffs. Dumbtoni is incapable of knowing how to use the talent he has available, he tries to cram the players into his losing small ball system when he needs to devise a system that works for the personnel.

    The other problem is Ancient Nash. who should never of cut his hair because now all he does is look too old. Fisher was dumped for being too old then that little idiot buss boy brings in an even older player who is incapable of playing defense, that’s why the Laker’s transition defense is so horrible.

    Finally the biggest problem is that little idiot buss boy, Jimmy. He is incapable of managing a premier sports franchise like the Lakers, better if Daddy Buss wakes up and fires him now. Hopefully Jerry will replace Jimmy with Jeanie, the smart Buss child and her beau Phil Jackson.

    Fire Dumbtoni!!! Fire Jimmy Buss!!! We Want Phil!!! We Want Jeanie!!!

  16. paulhargis53 - Jan 9, 2013 at 9:13 AM

    Ah yes, there it is! Your team sucks this year, so let’s dust off the trophies. Pathetic. I bet you’re a Packers fan too, huh browneagle? Their fans are famous for that too.
    17>16, but you don’t hear any of our fans falling back on that because the team is at .500.
    Past titles have nothing to do with the 12-13 season. Teams having past titles or not has nothing to do with whether fans can speak their minds on here or not.

    You lakers fans need to get over yourselves and just realize that the NBA landscape is changing. Gone are the days of dumb trades.There is a more restrictive cap with big penalties and repercussions outside of money for going over.

    Kobes big contract is hamstringing this team right now(he deserves big money) until that changes this team is stuck.

    • infectorman - Jan 9, 2013 at 9:29 AM

      Ironic,
      Looks like he wont get his 6th Ring, and in HIS brain be “really like Mike” because he’s paid too much.
      32% more than the 2nd highest player in the league, and OVER 10 million more than the best player in the league.
      Hey, as long as he gets his, Eff everyone else

    • unxpexted1 - Jan 9, 2013 at 10:35 AM

      I love how this guy steady brings up the new labor relations and contracts luxury taxes blah blah blah. You cant make trades, blah blah blah…..yet we STILL traded and got one of the best centers in the league and were able to bring in steve nash….granted its not working, but the moves were still able to be made. We STILL have the ability to sign D Howard if he decides to stay (which i’m not sure he will). Just dont give me that we as a franchise will not be able to make moves becauase we have, it just hasnt panned out. We didnt collect the right talent.

      The basketball landscape is changing, I agree but the way its changing you missed. Gone are the days where you can dominate with big men. Its a guard driven league now. The best teams have young athletic guards. The lakers have a two 17 year vets at guards. At the end of the day that is really the problem.

  17. magicbucs - Jan 9, 2013 at 9:19 AM

    At bozo….not really but you can keep dreaming about that and get off your knees you’re sucking worse that the lakers.
    To all you laker fans that keep saying oh we have 17 championships and you guys have none. That’s the only comeback you have for everything. It doesn’t matter what you did in the past. Nobody cares. What matters is right now, this season you guys talked all that junk about another championship and you guys couldnt even win a D-league championship THIS SEASON!!! Or the next 5 cause nobody is going to want to play for LA while the rapist (KOBE) is there.

  18. dennisofletcher - Jan 9, 2013 at 9:30 AM

    This is great. Everyone is throwing fingers to so many places it must look like a session of Congress. Writers like Michael Ventre are pointing at Kobe, most of you are, yet no one seems to say the truth.

    It’s D’Antoni. Period.

    Remember when that genius was in New York? Carmelo wasn’t a team player, etc…
    Gee, look what happened to him when the genius left.

    And, this isn’t just bashing. The facts speak for themselves. This ‘great’ coach has never won an NBA crown. So, why does everyone stick up for him? Does he have pictures of journalists?

    The Lakers won’t win anything until they find a real coach, not a poseur.

    • mazblast - Jan 12, 2013 at 7:18 PM

      I thought the one problem was at the point. So they got Nash.

      Then the one problem was in the middle. So they got Howard.

      Then the one problem was Brown. So they fired him.

      Then the one problem was Nash getting hurt.

      Then the one problem was Gasol getting hurt.

      Then the one problem was Howard getting hurt.

      Then the one problem was D’Antoni.

      Laker fans, with their constant “we’re one problem from being dominant” routine, remind me of women whose shtick is a constant stream of “and one more thing…” to browbeat their men all damned night long.

  19. paulhargis53 - Jan 9, 2013 at 10:50 AM

    I said DUMB trades. You know, like Memphis gift wrapping Pau?

    • spthegr8 - Jan 9, 2013 at 12:15 PM

      Gift wrapping Pau??? They got Marc Gasol in return. The C’s know about gift wrapping. I mean, Kevin McHale “gift wrapped” KG for ya’ll!!! Just Saying!!!

  20. bobthis - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:29 AM

    There are a lot of problems with the Lakers. The most obvious is the coaching. The great coaches look at the strengths of the players and create a game plan to fit. The coach with the huge ego forces his plan on the team even at the risk of wasting a whole season. Why? Because if it happens to work he will then be called a genius. Bernie only had the team for five games and he won four. He just let them play. Interesting.

  21. doublezero74 - Jan 9, 2013 at 12:41 PM

    Why does everybody conveniently forget what the celtics gave up to get Garnett. Al Jefferson was the centerpiece of that trade for the T-wolves and they got an excellent young F/C for the next decade. He’s not the defender that KG is but he has a terrific low post game and can shoot well from perimeter. I’d take jefferson over gasol every time

  22. doublezero74 - Jan 9, 2013 at 12:50 PM

    Garnett was traded to the Boston Celtics in exchange for Al Jefferson, Ryan Gomes, Sebastian Telfair, Gerald Green, Theo Ratliff, cash considerations

    Gasol was traded to the Los Angeles Lakers along with a 2010 second round draft pick for Kwame Brown, Javaris Crittenton, Aaron McKie, the rights to Marc Gasol (Pau’s younger brother), and 2008 and 2010 first round draft picks.

    The Twolves got a way better deal than the grizzlies, proven NBA performers. The grizzlies got nothing but junk players and low 1st round draft picks

    • loungefly74 - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:07 PM

      marc gasol is not junk, dude…

  23. loungefly74 - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:05 PM

    wow….there are some great and funny comments on this one…stirring the pot/drama…its why us fans/haters care and watch!

    so…my take. totally agree with the peeps who say D’Antoni is the problem. but along with him is the chemistry issue. the lakers just don’t know how to play together. you can’t deny the star power on this team…but the “flow” is just not there. and most of that is on the defensive side. there is still a huge chunk of the season left, i mean, a 8-10 game winning streak can turn things around, so we will see.

    those that are blaming kobe are just not watching the games or just have a huge bias towards him. their offense is fine…its the defense, folks. transitioning back on D is not happening. again, the coach needs to fix that.

    well…my fellow Laker fans…let the trolls/haters live it up right now. its their time to shine. a positive takeaway is the Lakers don’t just stand pat…they do things to stay relevant in this league. the history does matter, folks. it’s what fans of the team care about because we stick with them year after year. i know haters/trolls don’t get this because they have a different agenda…but legacy does matter. only fans who don’t think that are bandwagon-jumpers…

    • limonadamas - Jan 10, 2013 at 1:53 AM

      Ahhh… a voice of reason. haha

  24. godfather8775 - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:10 PM

    Lakers are still the kings of LA. Not because they won all those champions but because they are the last LA team to bring home a championship. If the Clippers win it this year then Lakers are bumped out. Until then Lakers still rule LA.

    • loungefly74 - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:27 PM

      well…agree it will be “Clipper season”…but that city is owned by the Lakers. History does account for a large part of “rights to the city”. the Clip show would need to win several title just to be in the discussion. remember man, 1 good season does not fully erase decades of horror.

  25. godfather8775 - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:41 PM

    Lakers will always be the better franchise no doubt about it. There is a difference between a good season and a championship season. If Clippers win they will be on top. Not for long because history will repeat and Lakers will be back on top in a few years and the Clippers will self destruct and become the Clippers everyone know and there stands will be empty. I think every team deserves a taste of winning a championship and this could be the Clippers year. If it is its one and done. They are gonna have a hard time with that OKC team though

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