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Phoenix vs Lakers Post Game – Clarkson saves the day

Lonzo Ball could only watch from the bench as the Los Angeles Lakers pulled away late to beat the Phoenix Suns. Jordan Clarkson was just playing too well to come off the court.

Clarkson scored a season-high 25 points in 26 minutes, and the Lakers beat the Suns 100-93 on Monday night.

“I just came in there aggressive like I try to do every night,” Clarkson said, “score the ball for the same group and just win the game. It was a good win for us, to finish the road trip like this.”

Devin Booker had 36 points, his second consecutive game of at least 35, for the Suns.

Brook Lopez and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope scored 15 apiece for the Lakers, who salvaged the finale of a four-game road trip and won in Phoenix for the second time this season.

Ball, the Lakers rookie coming off his first career triple-double on Saturday night, did not play in the fourth quarter. He had seven points on 3-of-10 shooting, five rebounds, five assists and four turnovers in 28 minutes.

Coach Luke Walton said he came close to putting Ball back in the game but couldn’t pull reserves Clarkson and Corey Brewer.

“There were a couple of times where I was one play from putting him back in,” Walton said, “and one of those guys would make a play.”

The Lakers had just two turnovers in the fourth quarter after committing 14 in the first three.

“I thought we did a great job taking care of the ball,” Lopez said. “And I thought we did a great number defensively as well.”

“I thought the 3-pointers were the difference in the game,” Phoenix interim coach Jay Triano said. “They made seven more 3s than us, and that’s a big part of the game, that’s a big number. I thought our defense was decent enough to keep us in the game, but when they make 14 3s and you make seven, it’s going to be a tough hill.”

Los Angeles shot 14 of 33 on 3s to the Suns’ 7-for-26 effort.

UP NEXT

Lakers: Open a four-game home stand against Philadelphia on Wednesday night.

Suns: Host Houston on Thursday night.

Phoenix Suns – L.A. Lakers

L.A. Looks To Bounce Back In Phoenix After Rough Opener.

The season opener did not go as the Los Angeles Lakers had planned. The team struggled mightily on offense, ultimately falling to the Clippers 108-92. There is no time to dwell however, as the Lakers head straight to Phoenix to take on the Suns.

Like the Lakers, Phoenix had a season opening home loss they would like to forget as they were dominated 124-76 by the Portland Trail Blazers.

Both the Suns and the Lakers are young teams looking to show growth and development this season. This game will be a great early test for both teams as well as a great chance for the young players to get going.

Three Keys to Lakers Victory

Don’t Hang Your Heads: The Lakers’ struggles on offense led to the team losing confidence in the rest of their game, which can’t happen. The team’s defensive performance against the Clippers was actually decent until their offensive issues continued and their effort faltered. Consistent effort must be a staple, and missed shots can’t allow that to change.

Guard the Three-Point Line: Phoenix isn’t a great team, but they have some players who can get hot, especially from deep. Booker, Bledsoe, and Daniels in particular are extremely dangerous while guys like Warren, Chriss, and Bender can knock shots down as well. Nothing gives a team confidence and a crowd life like getting hot from deep and the Lakers’ cant allow it.

Number One Scorer Emerges: Brook Lopez and Brandon Ingram shot a combined 10-34 last night with Ingram in particular struggling with an abysmal 3-15 showing. The Lakers are struggling to score and it is on their top options to get them out of that slump. Whether it is Ingram or Lopez, a number one option has to step up and get this team going on offense.

Projected Line Ups :

Phoenix : 

PG: Eric Bledsoe
SG: Devin Booker
SF: Josh Jackson
PF: T.J. Warren
C: Tyson Chandler

Key Reserves: Tyler Ulis, Dragan Bender, Marquese Chriss, Troy Daniels

Lakers : 

PG: Lonzo Ball
SG: Brandon Ingram
SF: Luol Deng
PF: Larry Nance Jr.
C: Brook Lopez

Key Reserves: Jordan Clarkson, Julius Randle, Kyle Kuzma, Alex Caruso, Andrew Bogut, Corey Brewer