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LeBron James, Lakers Fall to Short-Handed Grizzlies with Ja Morant, Dillon Brooks Out

Doric SamDecember 10, 2021

Joe Murphy/NBAE via Getty Images

The Memphis Grizzlies bounced back from Wednesday's loss to the Dallas Mavericks with a 108-95 win at home over the Los Angeles Lakers. Jaren Jackson Jr. had 25 points as Memphis improved to 15-11.

The Grizzlies have now won six out of their last seven games after having their five-game winning streak snapped Wednesday. Memphis was playing without its starting backcourt of Ja Morant and Dillon Brooks.

The Lakers fell back to .500 at 13-13. Anthony Davis led Los Angeles with 22 points. LeBron James recorded 20 points, 10 rebounds and 11 assists to become the fifth player in NBA history with 100 career triple-doubles.


Notable Player Stats

F Jaren Jackson Jr., MEM: 25 points

G Desmond Bane, MEM: 23 points

F Anthony Davis, LAL: 22 points, 8 rebounds

F LeBron James, LAL: 20 points, 10 rebounds, 11 assists, 4 steals

G Russell Westbrook, LAL: 9 points


Undermanned Grizzlies Hustle Way to Victory

Memphis won with effort on Thursday, out-hustling Los Angeles to earn the win. The Grizzlies grabbed 14 offensive rebounds for 17 second-chance points. Veteran center Steven Adams was a force down low, pulling down 13 rebounds by himself.

NBA @NBA

Steven Adams grabs his EIGHTH offensive board, and kicks it to Desmond Bane for his FIFTH triple late in the <a href="https://twitter.com/memgrizz?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@memgrizz</a> win! <a href="https://t.co/gh9u1Yo68Y">pic.twitter.com/gh9u1Yo68Y</a>

Jackson was outstanding on both ends of the floor with one of his best games of the season. He and Xavier Tillman were menaces in the frontcourt and combined for seven steals. 

Bally Sports: Grizzlies @GrizzOnBally

Have yourself a night <a href="https://twitter.com/jarenjacksonjr?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@jarenjacksonjr</a>! <a href="https://t.co/uWIljcS3TA">pic.twitter.com/uWIljcS3TA</a>

Memphis finished with 46 points in the paint and 19 fast-break points. It was a strong performance for a team playing without two of its best players.

Thursday's win was a return to the grit-and-grind heyday for the Grizzlies. While the team is not at full strength, Memphis will have to continue outworking teams on both ends to earn its wins.


Lakers Doomed by Mistakes and Turnovers

It was a sloppy game for the Lakers, which allowed a short-handed Memphis squad to take an upset victory on Thursday.

Los Angeles had 14 turnovers in the first half, with eight coming in the second quarter alone.

Mike Trudell @LakersReporter

A rough 2nd Q from LAL saw them get outscored by the shorthanded Grizz, 34-24, and LAL trail 59-53 at the half as a result.<br><br>They turned it over 8 times in the 2nd Q alone, and 14 times in the half, while allowing 7 Grizzlies offensive boards, 4 to Adams. MEM took 13 more FG’s.

The Lakers looked like they were turning things around in the third quarter, erasing a six-point halftime deficit and eventually going up 72-68. But Memphis ended the quarter on a 17-6 run to take a comfortable lead heading into the fourth.

Los Angeles fell behind by as many as 16 in the fourth quarter. The team finished the game with 22 turnovers.

A veteran team like the Lakers should not struggle to play a clean game, but that's exactly what happened Thursday. Los Angeles has had ugly performances like this throughout the season, and it's the reason the team can't find any consistency. The Lakers have just one three-game winning streak this season, and it occurred eight games into the year.

Los Angeles will need to clean up its play going forward. James and company need to realize they can't afford to play with a lack of focus.


What's Next?

The Grizzlies will welcome the Houston Rockets to Memphis on Saturday. The Lakers will look to bounce back Friday in a road matchup against the Oklahoma City Thunder.

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