After the game Bryant was asked when is it time to hit the panic button, and responded by saying “now.” Bryant later said he was joking about hitting the panic button.
Losing their third straight game of an early NBA season is not a joking matter for Lakers coach Mike Brown. The Lakers have turnover concerns that they need to address. They turned the ball over 23 times against the Clippers and are ranked in the top three in the NBA in turnovers with 19.7 percent per game.
“I’m not trying to fool anybody here, we do need a win and we hope that we could have gotten one tonight,” Brown said after the game Friday night. “That’s part of the reason why Kobe played the minutes he played, which is too many; but while we’re trying to get this win, we still got to do things right. It’s going to be tough. It’s going to be tough to get a win if we’re averaging 23 turnovers a game.”
Bryant played 43 minutes while scoring 40 points and Dwight Howard contributed 13 points and eight rebounds while struggling with constant foul trouble. They were without guard Steve Nash who sat out with a bruised left leg for the leg.
Losing is not one of Bryant’s strong traits, who is a five-time NBA champion.
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“It’s particularly hard for me because I’m not the most patient individual in the world, but you have to be,” Bryant said. “You have to be. You have to stay persistent. You have to stay committed to what you’re doing and just keep on trucking.”
There is one positive in the Lakers slow start, they have a field goal percentage of 49.8 percent per game, which is top three in the league. Despite having a high field goal percentage, the Lakers would like those figures to translate into wins.
“You always take a step back when you lose, I don’t really believe in moral victories,” said Bryant. “Defensively we were pretty solid, but you let a team get nine offensive rebounds for 20 second-chance points, I’m having a hard time believing how that’s possible.”
The Lakers will attempt to repair their defense and get their first win Sunday as they host the Detroit Pistons and hope to get Steve Nash back in the starting line-up.