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NBA Twitter Rips Russell Westbrook, Lakers for Play Without LeBron in Loss vs Raptors

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVDecember 8, 2022

TORONTO, ON - December 7   In first half action, Los Angeles Lakers guard Russell Westbrook (0) drives to the hoop
The Toronto Raptors took on the Los Angeles Lakers in NBA basketball action at the Scotiabank Arena in Toronto.
December 7 2022        (Richard Lautens/Toronto Star via Getty Images)
Richard Lautens/Toronto Star via Getty Images

The Los Angeles Lakers were without LeBron James and Anthony Davis for Wednesday night's road matchup against the Toronto Raptors.

It went about as expected.

The shorthanded Lakers were blown out, 126-113, dropping them to 10-14 on the season.

Russell Westbrook struggled to carry the load without the superstar duo in action, coming off the bench to score 16 points on 5-of-13 shooting from the field along with nine rebounds, three assists and five turnovers.

Dennis Schröder led the Lakers with 18 points. Fred VanVleet (25 points), Pascal Siakam (25 points) and O.G. Anunoby (23 points) paced the Raptors.

It was hardly a banner performance from Westbrook or his teammates, and NBA Twitter let them know about it.

Action Network @ActionNetworkHQ

Lakers fans tonight with no LeBron or AD… <a href="https://t.co/N2K3KrCfk5">pic.twitter.com/N2K3KrCfk5</a>

Lakers Lead @LakersLead

To anyone watching the Laker game: <a href="https://t.co/j9G7D1ss7N">pic.twitter.com/j9G7D1ss7N</a>

🏆LakersGuru🏆 @GuruLakers

Not starting Russ tonight for what reason? <br><br>Ham ran out the company picnic all-stars <br><br>Unserious tanking

ezy @krisunezy

weekly reminder that russell westbrook is being paid 47 million dollars this season

SeeSawRrr 🔜 Kx5 🔜 Ember Shores @SeeSawRrr

Hope people see the real Westbrook. Seems like too many fans forgot about last season. Today is a nice reminder <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Westbrook?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Westbrook</a> should not be extended. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Lakers?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Lakers</a>

Tony 🪃 @DaTruthHurtss

Trade Westbrook….. no reason for you to have only 14 points man

The Lakers have largely stabilized after a 2-10 start, going 8-4 since, and Westbrook coming off the bench and playing well has been a catalyst for the change in form. Even with James and AD out, the Lakers didn't mess with that chemistry.

Jovan Buha @jovanbuha

Darvin Ham indicates that Russell Westbrook will likely come off the bench tonight despite LeBron James and Anthony Davis being out because he likes Westbrook’s rhythm with the second unit.

It's hard to go against a playoff-caliber team like the Raptors (13-12) on the road without your two best players, however. The Lakers getting smoked didn't exactly come as a huge surprise—the Raptors opened the contest on an 11-0 run, setting the tone for the rest of the game.

James, AD and veteran guard Patrick Beverley are all considered day-to-day going forward, so it's possible the Lakers won't be this undermanned when they travel to Philadelphia to face the Sixers on Friday night.

But one of the storylines surrounding this Lakers team is that the supporting cast isn't good enough. That was readily apparent on Wednesday.