The Los Angeles Lakers dropped to 5-11 and 8 straight losses (115-105) to the Phoenix Suns after Tuesday night's primetime matchup in Footprint Center. It was an interesting game, to say the least, as things got chippy and physical sponsored by Patrick Beverley, who body-checked Deandre Ayton late in the final quarter.
Anthony Davis' performance warranted the Lakers to make moves now.
The story and superstar of the night for the Lakers was Anthony Davis, who put up an incredible stat line of 37 points, 21 rebounds, 5 blocks, and 5 steals with LeBron James out of the lineup due to injury.
Unfortunately, that wasn't enough to propel the Lakers to a victory. AD continued his dominant performance as of late by putting up numbers that only Wilt Chamberlain and Bob McAdoo have done in NBA history. The Brow is also the first player to record such numbers since Charles Barkley (41 points, 22 rebounds, and 6 steals) did in 1998.
But as the theme has been for the Lakers over the past couple of seasons, their superstar didn't get the help he needed. Aside from Lonnie Walker's 24 points and Austin Reaves' 11, Los Angeles shot an abysmal 18.2% (4-22) from the 3-point line and couldn't stop Devin Booker and Mikal Bridges, who combined for 50 points in the contest.
Although the silver lining for the Lakers as of late is that Davis has proven he's more than capable of carrying the team, which should warrant the front office to act now and make some trade moves to salvage the season.
Since the beginning of last Summer, the purple and gold have been bullish about retaining their future draft capital (in 2027 and 2029) to avoid making marginal moves. Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka has made it clear that the organization is willing to part away with their picks for as long as they get the right value in return (AKA a superstar or an All-Star). But if Davis and James (who is expected to return on Friday) continue to play at a high level, then that alone should warrant the Lakers brass to act now.
Patrick Beverley is going to get a suspension.
Aside from Davis' historic night in a loss, the spotlight was also on the team's starting point guard, who resorted to a hostile act late in the game. After Booker smacked Reaves in the face (which was called for a flagrant foul), Ayton walked over and towered over Reaves. Pat Bev wasn't having any of it.
While his actions were inexcusable, the veteran shared that all he wanted to do was stand up for his teammate.
"Got a person on the ground, two people looking over mean-mugging and puffing their chest out, and referees don't get into it to kind of separate it, control the game so I'm going to stand up for my teammate," Beverley said as reported by ESPN's Dave McMenamin.
Suffice it to say that Beverley will serve a suspension for the flagrant, but at the very least, Lakers' head coach Darvin Ham, AD, and Russell Westbrook didn't fault him for standing up for his teammate.
But the night's result was still a loss for Los Angeles, the only team in the league that has yet to win a road game. The next few days will be interesting to follow, whether that's for Beverely's punishment or the if the Lakers are going to make some moves to get their streaking superstar some help.