Lakers lose to Milwaukee in last game before Christmas Day
Instead of a tuneup, it was a tune-down?
The Lakers got thumped by the Milwaukee Bucks, 98-79, on Tuesday at Staples Center, a humiliating loss to a team without three key injured players (Brandon Jennings, Drew Gooden, Corey Maggette).
The Lakers hadn't scored so few points against Milwaukee since scoring 81 against the Bucks in 1969.
The Bucks made an impressive eight of 14 from three-point range and outrebounded the Lakers, 39-25.
Kobe Bryant had 21 points on nine-for-16 shooting, but Ron Artest had only four and Derek Fisher only two points.
Earl Boykins led the Bucks with 22 points.
The Lakers have one more quarter to go into the Christmas Day game with a victory. It might not happen.
The depleted Milwaukee Bucks continue to lead the Lakers, 72-66, Tuesday at Staples Center.
John Salmons has 17 points, including a 17-footer to beat the third-quarter buzzer. Lightly regarded Ersan Ilyasova has 15 points and eight rebounds.
Kobe Bryant has 16 points on seven-for-12 shooting, but Ron Artest is having another off night, scoring four points on two-for-seven shooting, including an air ball on a three-point attempt near the midpoint of the quarter. Derek Fisher is also having a quiet night, scoring two points in 24 minutes.
The Lakers are getting pounded on the boards, 32-24.
Brandon Jennings is out because of a broken foot. Drew Gooden and Corey Maggette are also out with injuries.
But it didn't stop the Milwaukee Bucks from taking a 50-46 halftime lead over the Lakers on Tuesday at Staples Center.
Bucks power forward Ersan Ilyasova led all scorers with 13 points, and the Bucks outrebounded the Lakers, 22-16, and generally outhustled them.
Lamar Odom and Kobe Bryant each had 10 points for the Lakers, who allowed the Bucks to shoot 53.8% in the first half.
Forget Miami. The Lakers are struggling against Milwaukee.
Ersan Ilyasova and Andrew Bogut each had eight points as the Bucks led the Lakers, 25-22, through one quarter Tuesday at Staples Center.
The Bucks were shooting 61.1%, with Bogut and Ilyasova combining to make seven of eight attempts.
Only three Lakers had scored: Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom each had eight points, and Kobe Bryant had six.
One last game before the Lakers play that team from South Florida.
Until then, they play Tuesday against the Milwaukee Bucks, who have foundered this season after making the playoffs last season as the No. 6 team from the Eastern Conference.
Just when things couldn't get worse for the Bucks, they did, the team announcing Monday that point guard Brandon Jennings would miss four to six weeks after undergoing surgery for a broken foot. Former Clippers guard Keyon Dooling gets the start in Jennings' place.
The Lakers (21-7), meanwhile, will try to add to the momentum of a five-game winning streak with 48 more minutes of action before playing Miami on Christmas Day.
Andrew Bynum looked good last Sunday against Toronto, collecting 16 points and seven rebounds, but complained of a sore knee afterward. Many eyes will be on him Tuesday.