L.A.’s two NBA teams met for the fifth time in the last calendar year, with the Clippers winning for the first time after a regular season sweep by the Lakers.
Of course, Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol weren’t in the building.
Instead, it was the Summer League backdrop in Las Vegas, where there wasn’t a great deal at stake in terms of wins and losses even as young players attempted to prove their individual worth.
Despite 20 more points from Adam Morrison – who’d averaged 23.0 in L.A.’s (2-1) two previous wins – the Lakers weren’t able to deal with the Clippers combination of No. 1 overall pick Blake Griffin and last year’s lottery pick Eric Gordon in a 93-82 loss.
Griffin had little trouble with L.A.’s front line, bullying his way to 27 points on 11-of-15 shooting along with 12 rebounds; Gordon, who went seventh in 2008, added 21 points and three steals.
L.A.’s lone 2009 draft pick, Chinemelu Elonu, was productive in his 18 minutes. He scored eight points and grabbed seven rebounds despite committing a game-high nine fouls (there’s no fouling out of Summer League games).
The Lakers shot a decent 44.3 percent from the field, but led by Griffin’s 73.3 percent, the Clips hit at an outstanding 57.1 percent … uh … clip … to make up for 20 turnovers, including five from Griffin. The Lakers made just 1-of-7 three-pointers, were out-rebounded by eight and committed 35 personal fouls in the loss.
The purple and gold has a chance to get back in the win column against Russell Westbrook, James Harden and the Oklahoma City Thunder on Tuesday at 5:30 p.m.
Lakers.com will be in Las Vegas to cover all the action.