Sixers humble Lakers as losing streak reaches four games

L.A. erases double-digit deficit in fourth quarter but can't finish
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The Los Angeles Lakers can’t shake that losing feeling.

Hosting the Eastern Conference-leading Philadelphia 76ers the Lakers trailed by as many as 18 points, but clawed their way back before losing 109-101 on Thursday at Staples Center.

Without LeBron James and Anthony Davis due to injury, the Lakers struggled from the field, shooting 9 for 26 from the 3-point line (34.6 percent) and 43.6 percent overall from the floor.

The Lakers are now 0-4 without James and Davis on the floor.

LeBron James missed his fourth straight game due to a right, high-ankle sprain. 

Anthony Davis also missed his 18th straight game with a right calf strain. The Lakers were 21-6 when Davis went down with his injury. They are 7-11 since.

On the night he received his championship ring from the Lakers, Dwight Howard also received two technical fouls and was ejected from the game at the end of the first quarter.

Forward Danny Green also received his championship ring from L.A.’s title run before the game. Green had a much better night than his teammate in Howard. He finished with a game-high 28 points, shooting 8 for 12 from the 3-point line.

The Lakers and Sixers met for the second time this season. Los Angeles also lost the earlier matchup in Philadelphia, 107-106. 

Dwight Howard and Danny Green/USA Today Sports

Dwight Howard and Danny Green/USA Today Sports

However, the two frontrunners for league MVP honors did not play in James and Joel Embiid. Embiid sustained a left knee injury on March 12 against the Washington Wizards. However, the Sixers are 8-1 without Embiid. 

After missing three games with a sprained left ankle, Seth Curry returned to the starting lineup for the Sixers. Curry finished with 19 points.

Philadelphia improved to 3-0 on its current six-game road trip, earning their fourth win in a row and 10th in the past 11 games.

The Sixers upped their record to 32-13 on the season, while the Lakers dropped to 28-17. 

Also, for the first time this season the Lakers received permission from the Los Angeles county health department to have an audience of no more than 50 guests. Those guests allowed were mainly family and friends of players.

Top player: Dennis Schröder finished with a double-double, totaling 20 points and 11 assistsKentavious Caldwell-Pope was more aggressive in looking for his shot, finishing with 19 points on 6 of 10 shooting from the field.

What I liked: Marc Gasol finished with five points, two rebounds and two assists in 15 minutes of work in his first game back after missing nine games due to the NBA’s health and safety protocols.

What I didn’t like: The Lakers turned it over 20 times, and the Sixers scored 24 points on those turnovers. The Lakers were outscored 35-17 in the third quarter.

Injuries: Lakers head coach Frank Vogel said Anthony Davis is still not close from returning back to the court from a strained right calf.

They said it: “I think the biggest think for us is continuing to identify what we’re trying to get out of the offensive end and what we need to do from a defensive standpoint to be connected.”Kyle Kuzma on the Lakes continuing to try to win games without James and Davis.