The 2019-20 edition of the Los Angeles Lakers won’t match or beat the best two-loss start for an NBA season. On Sunday, they finally met another difficult matchup in the form of surging sophomore sensation Luka Doncic and the Dallas Mavericks.
Doncic put on another show in a duel with the league’s reigning superstar LeBron James, with the Mavs coming out ahead to end the Lakers’ winning streak.
Mavs vs. Lakers highlights spotlight Doncic, James
Doncic was doing just about everything necessary to help his team build and maintain a lead on the best team in the league. That included crashing the boards, finding teammates, and of course, scoring.
He’d hit fake-out threes, drive the basket, and even made a step-back three with King James guarding him.
The end result of Doncic’s brilliant play on the court was a stat line that included 27 points, 10 assists, nine rebounds, and three steals. It also helped the Mavericks win the road game 114-100 to end the Lakers’ 10-game winning streak. The team had just recently matched a franchise-best start at 17-2.
Doncic had some help as Delon Wright finished with 17 points. Justin Jackson, Dwight Powell, and Kristaps Porzingis each added 15 points as well.
However, it was the early frontrunner for MVP that carried the majority of the team’s workload.
Following the game, he admitted he still admires his idol, LeBron James, even in handing him a loss. They’ll meet again this season with the second matchup in Dallas, Texas.
Vogel, James, & Davis react to third loss of season
Following the game, Lakers head coach Frank Vogel gave his thoughts on the team’s loss. Vogel mentioned there was no “offensive pop” in a pivotal third quarter. In addition to talking about having to double-team Doncic, which opened up opportunities, Vogel mentioned his team might have become “consumed” by some of the calls made against them.
"We didn't really have an offensive pop the whole quarter."
— Spectrum SportsNet (@SpectrumSN) December 2, 2019
Anthony Davis and LeBron James totaled 52 points between them. AD also had 10 rebounds, two assists, and two blocks. LeBron nearly had a triple-double himself, as he grabbed nine boards and dished out eight assists.
Despite a tough home loss where they couldn’t play well defensively, it appears both superstars are ready to move on and refocus. LeBron talked to the media about the team’s goal of striving not to lose two games in a row at all.
“Realistic is the mindset. It’s not about (accepting that) sometimes you lose games in a row. Just having that mindset and that approach,” James told reporters.
“It’s one game,” Davis said according to ESPN’s report. “We’re not going to get down over this loss. We know the type of team we are. We know now we were playing well, and they beat us, but we beat ourselves tonight with the rebounding, and we need to do better.”
“Our whole thing is we don’t want to lose two in a row,” Davis also said. “Ever,” he added.
With the loss, the Lakers are now 17-3 overall, with a 9-2 home record and still hold a 2.5 games lead in the Western Conference. They’ll hit the road to take on the second-place Denver Nuggets (13-4) on Tuesday night, beginning at 9 p.m. Eastern Time.