Lonzo Ball's opponent at point guard a mystery as Lakers host Spurs

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LA Lakers forward Larry Nance Jr. was called the "Most Valuable Player" of the game by his coach after Thursday's win over the San Antonio Spurs, and Nance spoke about the game and his highlight dunk in the Lakers' locker room.

Walton was not sated by the win, however. A loss to the lowly Hawks (10-29) would have been embarrassing for a team that lost six games during the slide by 17, 10, 15, 18, 37 and 14 points. "I am going to enjoy the night and get some sleep finally and then we got to let [the win] go".

San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich was unsurprisingly frustrated with his team's "pathetic performance", though he also dealt credit to the Lakers' aggression.

Leonard said he suffered the injury when he got hit with an elbow by one of the Phoenix Suns' big men in a game January 5 at the AT&T Center. Spurs icon Manu Ginobili returned to the hardwood to enforce a five-point run, bringing San Antonio within six points. Sacramento shot a season-worst 34.5 percent from the field (30 of 87).

"Just reading the defense, trying to be better off of instincts", Ingram said. "They got into us, they forced us to turn the ball over way too many times".

Los Angeles answered by putting the game away.

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Los Angeles Lakers' Lonzo Ball dribbles the ball during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the San Antonio Spurs Thursday, Jan. 11, 2018, in Los Angeles. Lopez then missed from long range on what he admitted was a heat-check shot, but Ball was under the basket for a putback.

The Spurs stormed back to take a 53-52 lead after a 3-pointer from Bryn Forbes, but the visitors' advantage was short-lived.

After the Lakers' first victory since December 20, Walton was even able to crack a joke about LaVar Ball when asked about his strategy for taking his rookie point guard out midway through the first and second quarters to use him to start the next quarter with the second unit. What kind of message would that send to a young team?

Although his scoring pace slowed down a bit in the second half, he had a couple of key buckets late in the fourth quarter in the that helped fuel the Lakers' 16-6 run that sealed the win.

Whoever suits up for the Spurs, it's incumbent upon L.A.to take better care of the ball. Randle had his eighth double-double of the season. He responded with a calculated takedown of LaVar in which he referred to the Ball family patriarch as "just another fan in the peanut gallery" and said his opinion is "meaningless".

Bertans received his opportunity on Monday night, when the Spurs faced the Kings.