LOS ANGELES, CA – Nothing has gone right for the Los Angeles Lakers ever since they won the NBA In-Season Tournament earlier this month in Las Vegas, the slump continued on Christmas day where the Boston Celtics put coal in the Lakers stocking with a sound 126-115 victory at Crypto.com Arena.
After the game, James addressed reporters and delivered an honest take on the state of the Lakers, sizing up the team compared to the rest of the NBA’s top squads.
“I don’t think we’re where we wanna be to be able to compete against the top teams,” James said, via Lakers Daily.
Anthony Davis dropped a game-high 40 points and corralled 13 rebounds, but it wasn’t enough to lift the Lakers to victory. James provided just 16 points in the loss, his lowest scoring output on a Christmas Day game in 18 tries.
From the tipoff, the Boston Celtics were scorching from beyond the arc- jumping out to a 12-0 lead before the Lakers knew what hit them. Trailing by 18 points in the first half-the Purple and Gold mounted a comeback-briefly taking a 59-58 edge.
Boston improved its record to a league-best 23-6, flashing improved balance on the heels of a splashy offseason that included trades for Kristaps Porzingis and Jrue Holiday. All five Celtics starters scored in double figures, and they put away the Lakers (16-15) with suffocating defense in the second half.
Jayson Tatum added 25 points in the win.
“They were just clicking on all cylinders,” Davis said. “The turnovers [and] the transition game hurt us tonight. Against a team like that, the best team in the league, they make you pay for it.”
LeBron James had 16 points, nine rebounds and eight assists, but the Lakers have dropped six of eight since winning the inaugural In-Season.
The Lakers will host the Charlotte Hornets on Thursday.