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Video Credit: NBA

FSM Recap: Lakers vs Bucks – Game 65 – 2023

Los Angeles Lakers (35-30)  |  Milwaukee Bucks (41-23)


Friday night, it was the Lakers vs Bucks in Los Angeles. Led by D’Angelo Russell, the LeBron James-less Lakers took care of business against the Milwaukee Bucks 123-122. 


Lakers vs Bucks | Franchise Sports Media
Photo Credit: Jae C. Hong/AP

On Friday night, the Los Angeles Lakers took on the Bucks in Arena. Coming off a rough loss to the Sacramento Kings, the Lakers looked to get back on track on Friday night. However, things didn’t get any easier with Giannis Antetokounmpo, Damian Lillard, and the Milwaukee Bucks coming to town.

After going up by as many as 19 in the first quarter, L.A. gave up 59 points in 14.5 minutes, which resulted in the Kings leading by 22 points. That points to the Lakers’ defense, which has been their biggest problem among a long list of things since the NBA All-Star break.

The Lakers are ranked 28th in the league in defensive rating since the All-Star break, and only the Washington Wizards and Dallas Mavericks have been worse. Los Angeles’ falloff on defense is mainly due to the absence of Jarred Vanderbilt and their current perimeter defense, which wasn’t the case last year.

On Friday night, the Lakers were without LeBron James due to an ankle issue. That didn’t matter, though, as D’Angelo Russell went off for 44 points to lead the Lakers to a 123-122 victory.


Lakers vs Bucks First Quarter:


Lakers vs Bucks | Franchise Sports Media
Photo Credit: Jae C. Hong/AP

The Bucks got off to a quick 14-8 start as Antetokounmpo was in attack mode, and Malik Beasley and Brook Lopez both connected from deep.

Spencer Dinwiddie, who got the start in James’ place, helped settle the Lakers by hitting an open triple. Anthony Davis also started to get going offensively with some nice drives. As the quarter wound down, the Bucks missed a few shots, and that helped the Lakers keep it close.

A costly turnover by Russell led to an easy dunk by Bobby Portis for a six-point Bucks lead. Russell made up for it with a 3-pointer to cut the deficit to three at the end of the first.


Lakers vs Bucks 2nd Quarter:


Lakers vs Bucks | Franchise Sports Media
Photo Credit: Jae C. Hong/AP

Rui Hachimura hit a midrange jumper, and Russell drained a 3 to begin the second, allowing the Lakers to take the lead. Russell made two more triples after that, which helped the Lakers stay in front despite multiple three-point plays from Antetokounmpo.

The Lakers began to build a lead from there, with Davis and Austin Reaves leading the way. Cam Reddish also chipped in five straight points.

After a quiet start, though, Lillard eventually got going offensively to bring his team right back as the Lakers went into the halftime locker room with a 67-63 lead.


Lakers vs Bucks 3rd Quarter:


Lakers vs Bucks | Franchise Sports Media
Photo Credit: Jae C. Hong/AP

Beasley and Lillard stayed hot during halftime as they both connected from deep to begin the third. The Lakers had a nice response, though, with Russell and Davis finding each other for open looks to force a quick Bucks timeout.

The Lakers started allowing Antetokounmpo to get downhill from there, and the Bucks are a problem when that happens.

As Milwaukee cut into the Lakers’ lead, though, Taurean Prince hit a pair of big triples and a layup to keep his team in front. The Lakers then had a solid close to the quarter, with Russell hitting from deep and Reaves coming up with a steal and layup to beat the buzzer, extending the lead to 96-90 going into the fourth.


Lakers vs Bucks 4th Quarter:


Lakers vs Bucks | Franchise Sports Media
Photo Credit: Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE/Getty Images

The fourth quarter began with more of the same as the Bucks tried to chip away at the Lakers’ lead, but Russell kept hitting timely triples to stay in front.

The game stayed close throughout as the Lakers maintained a slight advantage until the Bucks finally took the lead with a few minutes to play. They took control from there as Lillard completed a four-point play to give them a 118-112 advantage.

Rui Hachimura responded with a triple, and then Russell hit yet another one, making it a two-point game in the final minute. Antetokounmpo hit a big bucket from there. Russell responded with a three-point play to get it back to one. After a missed layup by Lillard, the Lakers got the ball back with 23 seconds to play.

Again, Russell came up big with his team with a bucket to put them up 123-122 with 5.9 to play. Dinwiddie then came up with the game-winning block on Lillard, sealing a huge victory.


The Los Angeles Lakers host the Minnesota Timberwolves on Sunday, March 10th, at 6:30 pm PST at Arena. Thank you for visiting for your Las Vegas Sports news.


Franchise Sports Media. Las Vegas sports news about Las Vegas Sports teams.

– Joe Arrigo – Franchise Sports Media

Follow Joe on all social media: @joearrigofsm

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