LeBron to tie consecutive missed-games mark with Lakers

KyleKuzma- cropped

KyleKuzma- cropped

Andrew Wiggins scored 25 of his 28 points in the first half, helping the Minnesota Timberwolves take charge from the opening tipoff and breeze by the LeBron James-less Los Angeles Lakers for a 108-86 victory Sunday.

All of these things have contributed to the Lakers' recent downturn, though the loss of James certainly stings the most. Ball didn't score a single point, his second scoreless game this season, while Ingram mustered 13 points on 5-of-16 shooting.

The Lakers are now eighth in the Western Conference with a 21-19 record, having won just three of their last 10 games. However, if they intend to climb the standings, they need even higher season-highs, as well as more consistent 20-plus outings, out of their third-year slender playmaker.

"They're trying, but they're young", Walton said about Ball and Ingram, via ESPN.




If he is able to quickly flip the switch and James manages to return in a timely fashion, Los Angeles will pose a serious threat to be the last team standing in the Western Conference. The Lakers have dropped three of four games without the four-time NBA Most Valuable Player. We need that all the time from him. For perspective, the Philadelphia 76ers are second-to-last and have a mark four points per 100 possessions better. It's hard to win in this league when you are healthy.

Ball agreed that he needed to step up his game in James' absence. The Los Angeles Lakers are averaging 112.3 points on 47.4 percent shooting and allowing 111.4 points on 44.6 percent shooting.

"For us to go somewhere, we're going to have to win on the road and that's been the biggest challenge all season", Harrison Barnes told the Dallas Morning News. The Mavericks have won 13 of their last 14 at American Airlines Center, outscoring opponents by 10.6 points per game and limiting teams to 102.2 points during that run.

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