Lonzo Ball calls for unity after Lakers’ ugly collapse without LeBron James

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He did not travel with the team to Sacramento, but with the Lakers back in Los Angeles for Friday night's game against the Clippers, James not only was in the building, he arrived in style.

"I take a lot of pride in (staying healthy)", James said after the Warriors game.

The Lakers lost their first game without Rondo and James on Thursday night, falling 117-116 to the Kings.

James did not travel with the team to Sacramento.

"That can't happen. We can lose games, but we'll lose them together".

Lakers head coach Luke Walton said their game plan will change without James leading the charge and hinted that their star player could be out for a period of time. So there's two teams in L.A.

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That collapse included a run of 22 unanswered points for the Clippers (21-14), matching the longest in the National Basketball Association this season, despite the presence of James, Rondo and McGee on the sidelines. They were then able to take over with that 22-0 run that started late in the third quarter.

Josh Hart scored 12 points for the Lakers before getting ejected with 4:41 left after he was infuriated that Tobias Harris wasn't called for pushing off. Walton also got a technical foul in the exchange. "And we can't let those things affect us". We all have. We knew it would be a tremendously important game, no matter the circumstances.

Kyle Kuzma scored 24 points and Lonzo Ball had 19 for the Lakers, who played without LeBron James, Rajon Rondo and JaVale McGee.

"They were trying to talk to us in the best way they could, but it's not the same as them being out there", Ball, who had 19 points, told reporters of the vocal veterans. As for the Lakers, they seem like a team destined to compete in this year's postseason as their record at the moment is at 20-14. He had surgery to fix ligament damage in his right ring finger and is expected to miss at least a month.

"Lou has seen pretty much every defense you can throw at him", Rivers said.

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