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Friday, November 15, 2013
Rapid Reaction: Grizzlies 89, Lakers 86

By Dave McMenamin


LOS ANGELES -- At Friday's shootaround, Los Angeles Lakers coach Mike D'Antoni was asked if his team really was a live-by-the-3, die-by-the-3 squad this season.

"That's our best thing we've got going," D'Antoni said. "So, you live and die by it because if the best thing you've got going is not working, you're dying.

"We got to learn to do other things. We got to post up better. We went to the post a lot, I don't know what our rate of completion is, but it's got to be better. We have got to be able to defend better. We got to have a transition game where we can get some layups. But right now, the best thing that we have is the 3 and at the end of the night, if we shoot good 3s we have a really good chance to win."

The Lakers' 3s were falling against the Grizzlies, until the one they needed -- a catch-and-shoot for Steve Blake on the left wing off an inbounds pass -- fell short when it could have tied the score in the final minute.

Not that the missed 3 was the real killer. The Lakers still ended up going 10-for-24 from deep (41.7 percent) as a team.

What hurt them was their rebounding (getting out-boarded 51-40). It was their inability to stop Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol down low. It was their lack of execution down the stretch in the fourth quarter in yet another close game that they couldn't figure out a way to finish.

How it happened: Nick Young scored 12 of his 18 points in the second quarter to erase a 10-point Grizzlies lead and the Lakers took a three-point edge into the fourth. Randolph scored 14 of his 28 points in the final frame, including a finger roll with 16.7 seconds left to put Memphis up by three. Randolph tacked on two free throws after that before Young was fouled on a 3 with the Lakers down by five. He made two and missed the third on purpose to try to give L.A. one last try to tie it with a 3 if the Lakers grabbed the offensive rebound, but Memphis ended up with the ball and that was the game.

What it means: The Lakers missed a golden opportunity to start their four-game stretch at home with a win. Now they'll have to sweep their final three just to get back to .500 at 7-7 before going back on the road.

Hits: Jodie Meeks scored a season-high 25 points on 10-for-16 shooting, including a 5-for-9 mark from beyond the arc. It was a nice bounce back from the season-low three points on 1-for-5 shooting that he had against Denver.

Misses: L.A. shot just 6-for-11 on free throws (54.5 percent).

Pau Gasol shot 4-for-12 from the field, even though he had 10 points and 13 rebounds overall.

Stat of the game: 18,997. That was the Lakers' attendance Friday, getting back up to a capacity crowd after their sellout streak of 320 consecutive games was snapped earlier in the week against New Orleans.

Up next: The Lakers continue their homestand by hosting Detroit on Sunday before having a rare four-day break in the schedule without a game from Monday through Thursday that should help some of L.A.'s tired bodies to heal.