The Los Angeles Lakers were on the brink of a sensational Christmas Day comeback on Saturday only for their plans to be foiled by a shorthanded Brooklyn Nets side. Russell Westbrook played his part for the Lakers, but it was also his botched dunk at a crucial juncture late in the game that sealed his team's fate.
With the Lakers down three points with less than 30 seconds on the clock, Westbrook sensationally missed a contested dunk that he would have made four out of five times. It looked like it was an easy slam for Russ only for him to be denied by the rim:
Russell Westbrook getting stuffed by the rim on a dunk attempt 👀 pic.twitter.com/M72D7uaNfh
— Billy Heyen (@BillyHeyen) December 26, 2021
You can also see a wide-open LeBron James in the corner here. The Lakers superstar even had both hands up as he signaled for a pass. LeBron also just drained a clutch three a few moments earlier and he would have had a good look to tie the game if only Russ kicked the ball out.
Then again, you can't fault Westbrook for taking it hard to the rim. It really did look like an easy two points for him, but this botched dunk attempt just compounded the Lakers point guard's horrible shooting night. Russ went 4-of-20 from the field in this one, though he did amass a 13-point, 12-rebound, and 11-assist triple-double.
Ultimately, the Lakers were defeated by the Nets, 122-115. That's now five straight losses for the hapless Lakers.