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Dwight Howard ejected as Lakers lose to Raptors (VIDEO)

Jan 20, 2013, 4:54 PM EDT

The Lakers lost to the Raptors in Toronto on Sunday by a final of 108-103, dropping them six games under .500 with three teams ahead of them for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference.

Los Angeles played the entire second half without Dwight Howard, who was ejected with 1:18 to play in the second quarter after getting tangled up with Alan Anderson while battling for position on a free throw attempt from Metta World Peace.

Howard received his first technical of the game in the first quarter, while asking the nearest official for a foul that wasn’t called on one of his shot attempts.

Histrionics from the Lakers broadcasting team aside, this really is the problem with the dreaded double-technical foul call. When the referees lazily refuse to assign blame to one player or another and whistle them both for a foul when either (a) one is clearly at fault, or (b) the play could have gone without a call entirely, this is the unfortunate end result.

There didn’t need to be a call on either player in this situation; a mere warning would have sufficed. Instead, the Lakers were forced to play the second half without one of their main cogs inside, especially defensively.

Howard’s ejection was far from the reason the Lakers lost this one. Kobe Bryant struggled to find his shot for the second straight game, and while he finished with a team-high 26 points, it took him shooting 10-of-32 from the field to do so.

Pau Gasol was granted his wish of returning to the starting lineup, and he responded with a big game offensively, finishing with 25 points on 10-of-15 shooting in 32 minutes. Earl Clark had another solid game, and finished with 14 points and 14 rebounds off the bench.

Once again, the issues on the defensive end of the floor ultimately doomed the Lakers. They allowed the Raptors — who had lost four straight coming into this one, and shoot just 43.9 precent from the field on the season — to score 52 points in the paint, and shoot close to 55 percent for the game.

Howard may have helped some in that regard, and he needs to do a better job of containing himself when dealing with the referees in order to stay on the floor with his teammates. But the issues are deeper than just one player, and after a couple of wins over some subpar opponents followed by an encouraging battle with the defending champion Heat, the Lakers seem to have regressed a bit, at least for one afternoon.

  1. magicbucs - Jan 20, 2013 at 9:32 PM

    Oh wait the lakers traded away all their 1st round picks to the magic and phoenix didn’t they?? lmao!! I’m loving it

  2. bonner504 - Jan 20, 2013 at 9:35 PM

    Steve Blake definetly can hit an occasional open jumper he is far from being the answer, the main problem is everyone not named Kobe refuse to play defense on a consistent basis. Pau and Dwight need to shut the hell up crying and just start playing ball!!! And if they can’t Earl Clark should be playing 35 mins a night because he brings every sec he is on the floor. The offense is fine they score plenty just no d and d wins championships!

  3. 00maltliquor - Jan 20, 2013 at 9:44 PM

    Gawwwwd, sooooooooooooooo many haters!! LMAO

    Everyone getting a good laugh out the Lakers this season after their teams been getting walloped on by them for decades. Cute. Laugh it up ladies,laugh it up.

    • progress2011 - Jan 21, 2013 at 6:28 PM

      Colt 45

      We say the same thing !

      Gawwwwd, soooooooooooooo many FAKERS !!!!

      1. Fake MJ
      2. Fake Chips (won by purchasing Stern & refs)
      3. City of Fake folk
      4. Fake fans / Bandwagoners/ folk that can’t point to l.a. on a map

      I’m most excited about the new Collective Bargaining Agreement, because it evens the playing field and makes it harder to purchase your next chip.

      So, as the CBA becomes more of a cornerstone and small market teams can actually compete for quality players, lets see how many folk that don’t even know where l.a. is on a map, remain fans……ESPECIALLY now that they are getting THRASHED !!!

      ahahahaAHAHAHAHAahahahah

      • 00maltliquor - Jan 21, 2013 at 7:00 PM

        What up Paul Jr.!!

        Purchasing Stern and refs for chips?? Ahhhhhhhhahahahahaha keep on whining, pissin’ and moanin’ about the Lakers’ sucess you jealous C-word! Go play in traffic or with your online girlfriend Lennay K!

        Even if the LAKERS never win another chip as long as I’m alive I will STILL be here in support, this is FOR LIFE!! NEVER been no bandwagoner NOR a fake person in my LIFE. Can’t say the same for you though bud! And ain’t your team the Heat? Talk about leveling the playing field and purchasing chips you fake sucka! AAAAHHahahaha!

  4. jimeejohnson - Jan 20, 2013 at 9:54 PM

    Trade everybody for the Spanish national team; everybody except Gasol and Kobe. Bring Kobe off the bench for limited minutes. Signed: somebody who rooted vehemently for Team USA in London Olympics.

  5. mytthor - Jan 21, 2013 at 12:32 AM

    Histrionics? I know you may have learned that word just today, but maybe you should pay more attention to what it means. The Laker announcers are 2 of the least homerish announcers in the game, and they didn’t say anything here that’s not absolutely true. They didn’t go over the top at all.

  6. mazblast - Jan 21, 2013 at 12:40 AM

    Laker fans, after you’re done with your cheese and whine, remember that you can’t assume (a) that Howard would have done anything the rest of the game, especially at ‘crunch time”, and that (b) it would have been impossible for both Gasol and Clark to have their big games if Howard had been playing.

    Two bigs came up big for the Lakers and they still couldn’t beat freaking Toronto. That tells you something about the rest of the team, particularly KoMe.

    • bougin89 - Jan 21, 2013 at 4:08 PM

      I think you’re spot on with this comment. Even if you exlclude Howard before this season started if you said the Lakers had a lineup that consisted of Steve Nash, Kobe Bryant, Metta, and Pau Gasol(you can throw whoever else in to round out the starting lineup) would you think they would lose to the Raptors?? My answer would be no way. The Lakers are in a total free fall. Hard to see them making the playoffs at this point.

  7. rawgator06 - Jan 21, 2013 at 1:00 AM

    Remember when people made fun of the heat for losing to the Mavs in the FINALS there first year together. I particularly remember Lakers fans calling our team a failure.
    Hey lakers fans, hopefully your team can grab the 8th seed!
    lol

  8. omniusprime - Jan 21, 2013 at 8:49 AM

    Stinking NBA refs are stupid as they are corrupt. They call double technicals because they’re too stupid to make the right call on the right player. That second technical on Howard wasn’t his fault and the refs were too stupid to see Anderson was willing to get himself tossed if he could get Howard tossed. Stupid refs fell for that garbage.

  9. paulhargis53 - Jan 21, 2013 at 9:28 AM

    I suppose it was the refs fault they fell so far behind in the 1st place, huh?

    Blaming the refs now? What’s next? The game didn’t count because a cat was coming? The lakers were on gool the whole game?!

    Face it, there are no excuses, the lakers just f***ing stink this year.

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