Lakers give Luke Walton bragging rights with 117-97 victory over Warriors

first_imgBeforehand, the laid-back Walton maintained with a straight face that matching off against his former employer does not mean anything more significant than competing against a non-descript opponent.“I’ll take any win no matter who we’re playing,” said Walton, a Golden State assistant the previous two seasons. “I’ll take the win.”Walton also stressed he remains more worried about the Lakers (2-3) ensuring they maintain good habits with improved defense, ball movement and unyielding work ethic. But after spending all of training camp trying to implement Golden State’s culture, it turns out the Lakers have developed enough to emulate the Warriors (4-2).“For non-important reasons, yes it would be nice to win for when I talk to them on the phone or see them in the offseason,” Walton said. “There’s some trash talking to be done.”There’s plenty. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error LOS ANGELES >> The text message reached Luke Walton’s phone on Friday afternoon, marking the usual time the Lakers’ coach either fits in a pregame nap or finalizes preparation.Warriors forward Draymond Green did not worry about any of that, though. He wanted to inform Walton he had trouble squeezing in his own nap for one specific reason.“He was so excited and amped,” Walton said, “for what he said he was going to do.”A few hours later, it turns out Walton had plenty to talk trash to Green about. Walton could brag that the Lakers secured a 117-97 victory over the Golden State Warriors on Friday at Staples Center. Walton could gloat that the Lakers held the Warriors to a 5-of-32 clip from 3-point range. Walton could gloat that Julius Randle stuffed Green at the rim late in the fourth quarter.center_img The Lakers resembled the “Showtime Era” with both their play and uniforms. They featured a balanced offense, including Randle (20 points, 14 rebounds), Lou Williams (20 points), D’Angelo Russell (17 points, three assists), Nick Young (12 points) and Larry Nance Jr. (12 points).Young drenched one of the Warriors’ “Splash Brothers” as Klay Thompson scored only 10 points on a 4-of-18 clip. Stephen Curry did not perform much better with 13 points on 5-of-17 shooting. Nance threw down a one-handed dunk while holding David West’s head.“I hope they have success when we’re not playing them,” Walton said beforehand. “But tonight, I hope they all have terrible games and that we win.”Interestingly, the Warriors have had terrible games against the Lakers in recent seasons.They also lost by 10 points on Dec. 23, 2014 as the Lakers played with more ball movement while Kobe Bryant sat out with an injury. The Lakers also upset Golden State 112-95 on March 6., 2015 on a Sunday matinee. With the Warriors collecting a win over Oklahoma City on Thursday in a game Golden State coach Steve Kerr called “emotional,” he forewarned his players about a potential trap game.The warnings did not work. Although Kevin Durant had 27 points and Green had 16 points, the Lakers had more depth. Walton’s familiarity with Golden State’s personnel may have given the Lakers an edge. Their ability to follow on his concepts definitely made a difference.“Obviously the emotions are going to be flowing,” Russell said beforehand. “But it’s still our job to come out, take care of business and stick to the game plan and treat this game like another game as far as trying to get the win.”That approach paid off, giving Walton plenty of material to talk trash with his former employers.last_img

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