Lonzo Ball Flirts with Triple-Double in Lakers' Loss to John Wall, Wizards

Alec Nathan@@AlecBNathanFeatured ColumnistNovember 10, 2017

WASHINGTON, DC -  NOVEMBER 9:  Lonzo Ball #2 of the Los Angeles Lakers handles the ball against the Washington Wizards on November 9, 2017 at Capital One Arena in Washington, DC. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2017 NBAE (Photo by Ned Dishman/NBAE via Getty Images)
Ned Dishman/Getty Images

Lonzo Ball appeared on pace for his first career triple-double through three quarters of the Los Angeles Lakers' 111-95 loss to the Washington Wizards at Capital One Arena on Thursday night.  

But in what amounted to another inconsistent showing, the No. 2 overall pick couldn't muster the final two assists and two rebounds he needed to hit the statistical benchmark. 

As a result, Ball finished with 10 points, eight dimes, eight boards and two steals as the Lakers dropped their second straight game. 

Had he managed to collect the pair of assists and pair of rebounds he needed, Ball (20 years, 13 days old) would have passed LeBron James and become the youngest player in league history to record a triple-double. James accomplished the feat at 20 years and 20 days old on January 19, 2005. 

One day after Ball told ESPN.com's Jeff Goodman shooting struggles were in his "head," he didn't do much to quell concerns over his shaky jump shot. 

In 29 minutes, the UCLA product shot 3-of-12 from the field, including 1-of-7 from three.

Ball, who entered the night shooting 29.5 percent from the field and 23.1 percent from three, has now shot under 50 percent in every game this season and hasn't topped more than five made field goals in a game since Oct. 31 against the Detroit Pistons

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Elias Sports Bureau (via ESPN Stats & Info) broke down Ball's shooting struggles from a historical perspective: 

ESPN Stats & Info @ESPNStatsInfo

After going 3-of-12 in the loss to the Wizards, Lonzo Ball has the 2nd-worst FG pct through 12 games in the shot-clock era (via @EliasSports) https://t.co/7joq4wv1B7

Charles Barkley, your thoughts? 


Chuck has no filter when it comes to Lonzo's shooting... 😂 https://t.co/nY5dx4sQ9P

However, the performance did represent Ball's first double-figure showing since that win over the Pistons and his third so far this season. 

As far as highlights were concerned, Ball didn't contribute many. 

In fact, his only notable bucket came on his first touch of the game when he got the Lakers on the board with a smooth reverse layup: 

Bleacher Report NBA @BR_NBA

Lonzo 👀 https://t.co/9x7JLrxiPu

There were also a few sharp passes in the pick-and-roll and on the break, as the Lakers' official Twitter account documented: 

Los Angeles Lakers @Lakers

Lonzo and Kuzma running the pick and roll to perfection #LakeShow (📺: @SpectrumSN & @spectdeportes) https://t.co/KdUv4YlDGQ

Los Angeles Lakers @Lakers

Zo runs the break and feeds Ingram for the one-handed slam! #LakeShow (📺: @SpectrumSN & @spectdeportes) https://t.co/GXCScCkU7j

The Washington Times' Todd Dybas also noted Ball didn't appear to be pressing or stat-chasing with a triple-double in sight: 

Todd Dybas @Todd_Dybas

Lonzo is not having a great night, but he has 8-8-8. This is why people must like playing with him. No sulking. Shares the ball. Rebounds.

John Wall, meanwhile, helped the Wizards avenge their Oct. 25 loss to the Lakers with 23 points, eight boards, five assists, three blocks and two steals. 

He also welcomed Brook Lopez to the nation's capital with a vicious left-handed slam: 

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

JOHN. WALL. LEFT. HAND. 🔨 https://t.co/4ozbXji67w

After strutting a bit of swagger on both ends against the Lakers, Wall and the Wizards will try to secure a second straight win Saturday when they host the Atlanta Hawks

The Lakers will also be in action Saturday as they attempt to snap their two-game road losing skid versus the Milwaukee Bucks

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