Robert Horry Blasts Lakers' Late Game Execution in Game 2 Loss to Nuggets

Nuggets stage comeback, erasing Lakers' significant early lead.

by Nouman Rasool
Robert Horry Blasts Lakers' Late Game Execution in Game 2 Loss to Nuggets
© Ethan Miller/Getty Images

In a stinging critique of the Los Angeles Lakers' late-game tactics, NBA legend Robert Horry expressed frustration over their Game 2 execution against the Denver Nuggets. Despite building an impressive 20-point lead in the first half, the Lakers' approach in the closing stages of the game drew criticism for deviating from their early successful strategies.

According to Horry, the pivotal issue was the Lakers' departure from team-oriented play, highlighted by LeBron James' increased isolation plays in the second half. Speaking on Spectrum SportsNet, Horry, affectionately known as "Big Shot Bob," remarked, "I love LeBron to death, but that's not winning basketball.

We saw effective teamwork in the first half; that's what built our lead. Suddenly, we shifted to something else, and it cost us." In the initial two quarters, the Lakers showcased a fluid offensive scheme. D'Angelo Russell, often referred to simply as 'DLo', played a crucial role, sinking critical three-pointers, while Anthony Davis dominated inside, shooting an almost perfect 11-for-12.

This dynamic combination provided the Lakers with a substantial edge over the Nuggets.

Nuggets Narrow the Gap

However, as the game progressed, Denver methodically chipped away at the lead. The Nuggets' disciplined offense and resilience under pressure saw them erase the Lakers' advantage, culminating in a 20-point lead dwindling to just 12 within four minutes during the third quarter.

The Lakers responded poorly, resorting to isolation plays that ultimately led to prolonged scoring droughts. The strategic shift not only stymied the Lakers' momentum but also highlighted broader issues, such as a lack of discipline and execution under pressure points later echoed by Lakers great James Worthy.

Worthy criticized the team's execution, particularly lamenting the Lakers' inability to maintain their composure and adhere to the game plan that had served them well initially.

This loss extends the Lakers' disappointing streak to ten consecutive defeats against the Nuggets, with each loss seemingly following a familiar, disheartening script.

Despite strong performances from Davis and Russell, and a valiant effort by James who scored 12 points in the fourth quarter, the Lakers were unable to overcome the strategic and executional prowess of the Nuggets. Denver's Jamal Murray sealed the game with a decisive shot, underscoring the ongoing challenges the Lakers face in overcoming their rivals.

As the series moves forward, the Lakers are left to reflect on their strategic decisions and seek ways to refine their approach, hoping to finally break their losing streak against a formidable Nuggets team that continues to expose their late-game vulnerabilities.

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