Kobe Bryant: Timberwolves' Drubbing of Lakers Is 'Hard to Watch'

Daniel O'BrienFeatured ColumnistMarch 28, 2014

USA Today

It's no secret that Kobe Bryant has been dismayed by the 2013-14 Los Angeles Lakers, and Friday's 143-107 loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves provided further proof of his disgust.

While the Purple and Gold were getting thoroughly trounced by Kevin Love and Co. at the Target Center, the Black Mamba expressed his frustration via social media.

The T-Wolves dominated the Lakers on the glass, ran circles around them while wheeling and dealing more than 30 assists, and the result was a massively lopsided triumph. Rick Adelman's crew out-rebounded Los Angeles 49-26, and they also scored a whopping 66 points in the paint.

Love absolutely toyed with the Lakers all night, cleaning up the boards with 10 rebounds and picking apart the Lakers defense with 10 assists.

Add 22 points to the equation, and the Minnesota big man earned a triple-double, which seems like it's becoming an increasingly frequent occurrence.

It isn't necessarily shameful to give up a triple-double to a star like Love, but it's definitely embarrassing when he reaches the milestone in less than 30 minutes of play.

Love's lightning-quick triple-double wasn't the only bit of history for the night.

In a season filled with Lakers defensive lowlights, this was the worst 48 minutes from a defensive production standpoint. Leave it to Mike D'Antoni's squad to give Minnesota its franchise high for points in a single game.

Prior to the game, Adelman spoke to reporters about the Lakers' trial-filled season, expressing a level of sympathy for L.A. before his team beat them into the ground.

They're really difficult to figure out. I mean they really, I don't know, people doubt all over them, Mike and everything else and they had nothing but injuries. You can't exist in this league. They had four point guards and they lost them all and they went through a terrible stretch.

Even the Lakers' opponents feel bad for them.

No one really expected Los Angeles to be a defensive juggernaut this season, even if Kobe was healthy. But they're reaching a whole new level of underachieving these days.

It's unusual for this franchise to be in such a state of ineptitude, and many Lakers fans are undoubtedly looking forward to the offseason and a chance to reload. Bryant's return will be met with a new-look roster, hopefully one that will be drastically more competitive.

Surrendering 140-plus points in regulation is humiliating, but not entirely shocking considering D'Antoni's defensive reputation. His inability to shed this stigma may ultimately lead to his ousting in a matter of weeks.

When the scoreboard gets as ugly as it did tonight, can we really blame Kobe for his public discontent?


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