Tuesday wasn’t kind to LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers. Not only did the franchise reportedly back away from the table with regard to trade discussions for Anthony Davis, but fans of the Indiana Pacers elected to lob less than ideal chants in the direction of Brandon Ingram.
Then, the Lakers had to actually navigate a 48-minute basketball game and, in short, things didn’t go well in Indiana. Los Angeles lost all four quarters to the Pacers, who are playing without their best player in Victor Oladipo, and the end result was an embarrassing 136-94 loss.
A 42-point defeat (especially one that was the largest margin for any Pacers win over the Lakers) would be bad enough on its own, but the Lakers’ flop also marked the most lopsided defeat of LeBron James’ storied career.
James managed to produce solid numbers, scoring 18 points, dishing out nine assists and grabbing seven rebounds in only 30 minutes. With that said, the legendary forward was -17 in those minutes and, elsewhere, it would be tough to find a bright spot outside of a 16-point mini-explosion from JaVale McGee off the bench.
In the grand scheme, this result could be explained away as “just one game” but, given the weirdness surrounding the Lakers, it might be more than that. After 54 games, Los Angeles sits with a 27-27 record and, if the season ended today, the Lakers wouldn’t be participating in the postseason. That’s a reality that isn’t close to ideal for the Lakers and it speaks volumes that the team bottomed out in a fashion that was memorable through the lens of a first-ballot Hall of Fame career.