With rumors of trading or benching, Jeremy Lin actually played well in the short time he was on the floor as the Los Angeles Lakers lost 113-96 to the Boston Celtics, while Kobe Bryant had another one of those days with plenty of points and shots, not actually influencing the game.
Lin scored 14 points in 19 minutes, but those points didn’t really help out the Celtics, as the Lakers were losing by 21 points during his time on the floor. He made way for Ronnie Price and a little bit of Jordan Clarkson during the long periods of garbage time, which didn’t really make anything better.
Kobe Bryant scored 22 points on 9-of-21 from the field. Considering the circumstances and the fact that he actually shot better than 40% from the field, it’s surprising to see that he didn’t shoot more.
The biggest problem for the Lakers like most of the time this season wasn’t on what’s happening on offense. Lin was aggressive, Bryant and Nick Young were themselves. Obviously, the Lakers are at their best when Bryant looks for passing lanes instead of open shots (which he rarely does find), but not being able to slow down the Celtics at any point during the game was their biggest problem.
Rajon Rondo finished with 16 assists, not finding it difficult at all to keep finding his way into the paint while the Lakers defense seems like a group of uncoached and undisciplined players who have no idea on how to react to a give and go situation. Tyler Zeller led the Celtics with 24 points, and four more players scored in double figures.
After two consecutive wins, the Lakers look bad again. They’re not a very good team which will win games from time to time, but until Byron Scott figures out how to make this group play a little bit of defense, the rumors about his job security and also the trading of Jeremy Lin will keep floating around, getting stronger with every loss.