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FSM Recap: Lakers vs Timberwolves – Game 78 – 2023

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Los Angeles Lakers (45-34)  |  Minnesota Timberwolves (54-24)

 

Sunday night, it was the Lakers vs Timberwolves at Crypto.com Arena. The Lakers, without LeBron James, lost Anthony Davis to an eye injury in the first half and ended up losing to the Timberwolves 127-117 on Sunday night.

 

Lakers vs Timberwolves | Franchise Sports Media
Photo Credit: Juan Ocampo/NBAE/Getty Images

The Los Angeles Lakers were looking for their fifth straight win on Sunday night, hosting the Minnesota Timberwolves as they looked to continue their late-season climb up the standings.

Unfortunately, LeBron James was a late scratch due to flu-like symptoms, leaving the Lakers shorthanded against one of the top teams in the West. On top of that, Anthony Davis was also forced to leave the game early, and the Lakers suffered a 127-117 loss.

Rui Hachimura continued his great offensive play, leading the way with 30 points. Spencer Dinwiddie slipped into the starting lineup in place of LeBron James and scored 18 points. Jaxson Hayes had himself a dunk contest, which contributed to his massive 19 points, along with ten rebounds and five steals off the bench.

 

Lakers vs Timberwolves First Quarter:

 

Lakers vs Timberwolves | Franchise Sports Media
Photo Credit: Etienne Laurent/AP

D’Angelo Russell got off to an excellent start against his former team with four early points. At the same time, Rui Hachimura added five of his own, and Spencer Dinwiddie and Austin Reaves both connected from deep to give the Lakers an early 20-13 lead.

A great start was needed for L.A. as they would have to find ways to get a Lebron-less win Sunday night. A 14-5 scoring run gave the Lakers a seven-point lead. As the quarter began winding down, L.A.’s offense started to slow, but they maintained a lead of four.

There wasn’t much defense played early, though, as Anthony Edwards responded with seven straight points for Minnesota. Davis had a monster putback dunk to end the first quarter, though, giving the Lakers a 37-33 lead.

 

Lakers vs Timberwolves 2nd Quarter:

 

Lakers vs Timberwolves | Franchise Sports Media
Photo Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea/USA TODAY Sports

Davis got hit in the eye on that dunk, so he was forced to head to the locker room to begin the second, allowing the Timberwolves to take their first lead.

While Dinwiddie did what he could offensively in Davis’ absence, Naz Reid was also hot for Minnesota to keep them ahead. After a triple gave Reid 23 first-half points, the Timberwolves took a double-digit lead for the first time.

Davis did not emerge from the locker room for the entire second quarter, and the Lakers really suffered as a result, going into halftime with a 79-64 deficit.

 

Lakers vs Timberwolves 3rd Quarter:

 

Lakers vs Timberwolves | Franchise Sports Media
Photo Credit: Juan Ocampo/NBAE/Getty Images

The Lakers unsurprisingly ruled Davis for the rest of the night at halftime, leaving the Lakers even more shorthanded for the second half.

L.A. began the third quarter playing inspired basketball, however, going on a 17-9 run led by Davis’ replacement Jaxson Hayes. He had a few big dunks to get the Lakers back within single digits.

After a Cam Reddish corner triple, the Lakers were down by just four, although Edwards and the Timberwolves ended the quarter well to take a 102-92 lead.

 

Lakers vs Timberwolves 4th Quarter:

 

Lakers vs Timberwolves | Franchise Sports Media
Photo Credit: Etienne Laurent/AP

The Lakers’ lack of size without Davis hurt them, as the Timberwolves were essentially able to get whatever they wanted inside. Minnesota went on a run to begin the fourth quarter, putting any hopes of a Lakers comeback attempt to bed. With so many key guys out, including their two stars, L.A. was not able to make another run to get over the hump.

D’Angelo Russell put up a disastrous performance that would be a massive problem for L.A., who needed his threes. In the final five minutes, the Lakers were down 16 and would take a miracle comeback to steal a win.

The comeback was nowhere to be found, as the effort the Lakers put up wasn’t enough. A game they needed to win fell right out of their grasp quicker than the time they spent in the eighth seed.

 

The Los Angeles Lakers will stay home at Crypto.com Arena to take on the Golden State Warriors on Tuesday, April 9th, at 7:00 pm PST. Thank you for visiting FranchiseSportsMedia.com 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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