Lakers blow 20-point lead in 101-99 loss to Nuggets in Game 2, LA’s losing streak to champs reaches 10 games

In a stunning turn of events, the Los Angeles Lakers squandered a commanding 20-point lead to suffer a heartbreaking 101-99 loss to the Denver Nuggets in Game 2 of their playoff series.

This defeat not only extends the Lakers’ losing streak against reigning champions to 10 games but also raises profound questions about their ability to maintain composure and close out games under pressure.


This article delves into the Lakers’ collapse against the Nuggets, examines the underlying factors contributing to their struggles, and scrutinizes the concerning trend of their losing streak against champions.

The Collapse Against the Nuggets:

The Lakers’ loss to the Nuggets in Game 2 was a tale of two halves, characterized by contrasting fortunes and dramatic momentum shifts.

Los Angeles stormed out of the gates with a dominant first-half performance, building a commanding 20-point lead behind stellar play from LeBron James, Anthony Davis, and their supporting cast.

However, complacency and defensive lapses allowed the Nuggets to claw their way back into the game, erasing the deficit with relentless hustle, timely three-point shooting, and disruptive defensive pressure.

Nikola Jokic and Jamal Murray spearheaded the Nuggets’ comeback, exploiting vulnerabilities in the Lakers’ defense and capitalizing on missed opportunities at the offensive end.

As the game entered its final moments, the Lakers found themselves locked in a tense battle with the resurgent Nuggets, struggling to regain their rhythm and assert control.

Despite a late surge led by LeBron James, the Lakers fell agonizingly short of victory, with a missed buzzer-beater sealing their fate and handing the Nuggets a pivotal win in the series.

Troubling Trend Against Champions:

The Lakers’ loss to the Nuggets not only extends their playoff losing streak against reigning champions to 10 games but also underscores a troubling trend of their inability to rise to the occasion against elite competition.

Dating back to previous seasons, the Lakers have consistently faltered against teams with championship pedigree, failing to deliver when it matters most and falling short in crucial moments.

This pattern of underperformance against the league’s top contenders raises questions about the Lakers’ mental fortitude, resilience, and ability to thrive under pressure.

While they have demonstrated flashes of brilliance and dominance throughout the regular season and playoffs, their inability to consistently deliver against championship-caliber opponents remains a glaring concern.

Moreover, the Lakers’ struggles against champions highlight the challenges of navigating the ultra-competitive landscape of the NBA playoffs, where every game is a high-stakes battle and the margin for error is razor-thin.

In a league defined by parity and unpredictability, success is contingent upon a team’s ability to rise to the occasion, adapt to adversity, and execute with precision when it matters most.

Analyzing the Underlying Factors:

Several factors contribute to the Lakers’ struggles against champions, including defensive lapses, inconsistent shooting, and lapses in focus and intensity.

Against the Nuggets, defensive breakdowns allowed Denver to exploit mismatches, generate open looks from beyond the arc, and capitalize on second-chance opportunities.

Offensively, the Lakers’ reliance on LeBron James and Anthony Davis to carry the scoring burden has left them vulnerable to defensive schemes designed to neutralize their impact.

While James and Davis are undoubtedly two of the league’s premier talents, the Lakers’ supporting cast must step up and provide consistent scoring and playmaking to alleviate pressure on their stars.

Furthermore, coaching adjustments and strategic decisions play a crucial role in determining the outcome of playoff games, particularly against teams with championship experience and savvy.

Lakers head coach Frank Vogel must identify areas for improvement, make necessary adjustments, and instill confidence in his players to execute their game plan effectively in crunch time.


The Lakers’ loss to the Nuggets in Game 2 of their playoff series serves as a sobering reminder of the challenges and uncertainties inherent in postseason basketball.

While the road to championship glory is fraught with obstacles and adversity, the Lakers possess the talent, experience, and championship pedigree to overcome adversity and reclaim their winning ways.

As they regroup and prepare for the remainder of the series against the Nuggets, the Lakers must draw upon their collective resolve, resilience, and championship DNA to bounce back from adversity and reassert their dominance.

With LeBron James and Anthony Davis leading the charge, the Lakers have the firepower and leadership to turn the tide and emerge victorious in their pursuit of NBA championship glory.

However, they must address their underlying issues, shore up their defense, and execute with precision to overcome the formidable challenges that lie ahead.

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