Kobe Bryant walks off the court as his team trails 79-77 after a basket by… (Harry How / Getty Images )
Kobe Bryant sounded a mess after the Lakers dropped to 7-8, losing at home to the Indiana Pacers.
Bryant overcame a cold to drop 40 points on the Pacers, hitting a big three-pointer with 24.5 seconds left to tie the game at 77. George Hill's driving layup with 0.1 second left Bryant sick and downtrodden in the locker room answering questions.
"It was a tough game for us," said Bryant. "I've got to minimize my mistakes. Ten turnovers are way too many for me, so I have to work on perfecting that and bringing that down."
The Lakers had 21 turnovers as a team, nearly half from Bryant, who played almost 44 minutes.
"It boggles my mind that I had 10 turnovers," said Bryant. "My responsibility is to pick everybody up. It doesn't matter if we miss 20 free throws, we still could have won the game. The fact is we had 10 possessions where we couldn't get looks at the basket because I turned it over."
The Lakers did miss 20 free throws. A running theme in losses has been turnovers and free throws.
The theory is that a healthy return from Steve Nash (leg) will change all that, and it very well might, but when exactly will Nash return? He's still out indefinitely and while he's been tremendous throughout his career at the line, Nash can't shoot for Dwight Howard.
For now Bryant is the de facto-point guard, with Steve Blake out (abdominal strain) and the Lakers getting intermittent production from Darius Morris and Chris Duhon.
"I'm just tired," said Bryant, clearing his throat and coughing throughout his postgame chat.
Just 6-4 at home and 1-4 on the road, the Lakers as a team look tired and that's not a good place to be just 15 games into the season.
They'll host the Denver Nuggets on Friday and Orlando Magic on Sunday before a road-heavy December.
Nash may be able to cure some of the Lakers' ills but when there's no telling when he'll have the legs to do so.
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