Frank Vogel unhappy with Lakers’ play after win over Bucks
The Los Angeles Lakers managed to escape Fiserv Forum with a 113-106 win over the Milwaukee Bucks on Thursday, but Frank Vogel still wasn’t too happy with the outcome. Shortly after the game, the Lakers head coach made it clear that he expects a greater effort from the defending champs on both ends of the floor, per Mike Trudell of Spectrum SportsNet.
Frank Vogel: “We have to play better. We didn’t play our best basketball tonight.”
They made up for it in Milwaukee with their shooting, and defensive rebounding, he added. Better to say that after a win, of course.
— Mike Trudell (@LakersReporter) January 22, 2021
As Frank Vogel stressed, the Purple and Gold didn’t exactly play to their usual standards versus the Bucks. The usually interior-dominant squad got outrebounded by Giannis Antetokounmpo 46-38 and were outscored in the paint, 58-32. The home team even moved the ball better, dishing out 27 total assists as opposed to the Lakers’ 25.
The Lakers’ supposed daunting defense was also quite the letdown on Thursday, allowing Antetokounmpo, Khris Middleton, and Jrue Holiday to each score 20+ points apiece. Bucks players Brook Lopez and Donte DiVincenzo also finished in double figures.
L.A.’s only saving grace was their hot shooting from downtown, as the Lakers went 19-of-37 from past the arc, while Milwaukee only made 9 of its 28 triples. LeBron James put up a game-high 36 points along with eight assists and six rebounds, while Kentavious Caldwell-Pope fired a season-high 23 points built on seven made threes. Anthony Davis added 18 points, nine rebounds, and six dimes.
With the win, the Lakers grabbed the solo lead of the top spot in the Western Conference standings with a 12-4 slate. The Bucks, on the other hand, dropped to 9-6 (good for third place in the East). So far, the reigning champions have yet to lose back-to-back games this season.
But as far as Frank Vogel is concerned, his Lakers can perform a lot better if they can only stay consistent.
Coaches always try to figure out when to crack the whip and when to loosen up on the reins. Vogel’s choice of approach with the Lakers, given the heavy lifting his team has had to do over the past several months, might come as a surprise to some.