Lakers Hand Warriors Sixth Loss of Season Behind Themed Kobe Socks
The Lakers went into Sunday afternoon’s matchup against the historic Golden State Warriors with a tribute to Kobe Bryant: the team wore #24 themed socks in Sunday’s matchup against the league’s top team.
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) March 6, 2016
And if they didn’t have a lottery pick to protect with their sub-.200 record, the Lakers would possibly consider wearing the Kobe themed socks for the remainder of the season based off Sunday’s stunning performance.
In perhaps one of the biggest upsets in NBA history, the now 13-51 Los Angeles Lakers defeated the top-ranked Golden State Warriors 112-95 Sunday afternoon in Los Angeles.
— NBA (@NBA) March 6, 2016
It was the first time in NBA history that a team below the.200 mark has beaten a team above.900, according to Elias Sports Bureau.
The Lakers handed the Warriors only their sixth loss of the season behind strong performances from up and coming youngsters’ Jordan Clarkson, who had 25 points, and 2015 second overall pick D’Angelo Russell, who pitched in with 21.
It was an early parting gift for the retiring Kobe Bryant, who contributed 12 of his own points, 10 of which came in the first half in a game that saw the Lakers lead stay in double digits throughout most of the second half. Bryant sat out the entire fourth quarter to rest his ailing shoulder despite chants from eager Laker fans towards the end of the game who wanted to see their retiring superstar close out the game.
The young Lakers came out hot from the start, not wasting any time in letting the Warriors know that despite their record, they were there to compete.
The Warriors, on the other hand, lacked the usual competitive spirit they’re known for. The reigning NBA champs shot an uncanny 4-for-30 from three-point range (13 percent) along with committing 19 turnovers against a Laker squad who so desperately wanted to pull off the upset. The two stats alone can sum up how the game managed to play out the way it did.
But despite their off-night, head coach Steve Kerr blamed the loss more on a lack of energy and defensive intensity, disregarding the notion that his team’s poor shooting was the culprit behind the loss. He mentioned that his team have had off-nights in the past but were able to come out with a win because of their will to compete.
"It happened, and we'll be all right."
Steph Curry, who was 1-of-10 from 3, on Warriors' loss vs. Lakers: https://t.co/XY6YE9Mqq0
— ESPN (@espn) March 7, 2016
The Splash brothers went 1-18 behind the arc, while the Lakers’ young back court of Clarkson and Russell went 7-13 from three-point land.
The loss should serve as a wake-up call to the NBA-leading Warriors, who are still one game ahead of the pace to break the 1995-96 Chicago Bulls record of a 72 win season. Jordan and the Bulls were 54-7 through 61 games and were similarly blown out in their 61st game with a 32-points to the New York Knicks.
The Warriors head back home to face the Orlando Magic tomorrow night and have 21 games remaining in their season. They sit first in the Western Conference and despite their strong play, hold only a 2.5 game lead over the San Antonio Spurs, whose play has been overlooked due to the Warriors flashy play.
It’s also worth mentioning the Spurs’ recent acquisition of sharp shooting guard Kevin Martin this past weekend. The move provides an already dangerous team with a proven role player that can come in and provide immediate scoring and may be the piece the Spurs need to dethrone these impressive Warriors in a seven game series.
We're still sleeping on the Spurs (again), but adding Kevin Martin makes this already-amazing group even better https://t.co/vEdk2aWO9O
— Sam Amick (@sam_amick) March 5, 2016
(AP Photo/Kelvin Kuo)