The Los Angeles Lakers and Golden State Warriors kicked off their preseason with the first of their two-game preparation series on Saturday night. The Warriors took over in the second quarter and cruised to the 108-125 victory at Chase Center.
Chris Paul made his preseason debut with the Warriors, while the Lakers had ruled LeBron James and Austin Reaves out for the game. Jonathan Kuminga shined for Golden State with 24 points, 8 rebounds and 4 assists, whereas Anthony Davis, Max Christie and D’Angelo Russell each scored 15 points for Los Angeles.
This was the first preseason game for both teams, who opened their training camps a few days ago, so they are still ways away from being ready for the start of the regular season.
Among the things that stood out was the poor performance of some bench players of the Lakers, who couldn’t live up to the expectations in their preseason opener. With that in mind, let’s have a look at three players of the 17-time NBA champions who underperformed vs the Warriors on Saturday.
Taurean Prince spent just 13 minutes on the floor and went for 2 points on 1/5 shooting. He was part of the second unit that struggled vs Golden State in the second half and saw the Warriors lead by as many as 18 in the first half (32-50).
Prince played eight minutes during the first half and committed five fouls, while he spent the other five in the second half before fouling out. The Lakers expect more from Prince moving forward, as they view him as a key bench player.
Cam Reddish played 19 minutes vs the Warriors and went scoreless, on 0/4 from the field and 0/3 from beyond the arc. He couldn’t make the difference in the second quarter, playing poor basketball on both ends, while an ankle injury in the first minutes of the fourth quarter sidelined him for the rest of the game.
The big man of the Lakers made his preseason debut with the team but struggled like the rest of the team’s bench. Christian Wood played 19 minutes on the floor, took only six shots and made two of them.
Like the rest of the bench players, Wood struggled on both ends, but we should expect him to play better moving forward, as the team views him as a key part of their rotation.
Both teams now shift their focus to their second preparation game at Crypto.com Arena on Friday, October 13, as we are just two weeks away from the start of the regular season.
The Lakers will play the reigning champions Denver Nuggets, while the Warriors will take on the Phoenix Suns. Both games will be played on Tuesday, October 24.