Lakers Fall to OKC Despite 29 From Russell

It came down to a battle between point guards named Russell, and Oklahoma City’s MVP candidate provided more than enough to overcome a hot night from one of the Lakers’ young talents.

Russell Westbrook turned in his 28th triple-double of the season with 17 points, 18 rebounds and 17 assists to push his Thunder to a 110-93 win over D’Angelo Russell and co.

The Lakers (19-40) struggled offensively in their first game since trading leading scorer Lou Williams to Houston. As a team, Los Angeles shot just 39.6 percent from the field, including 7-of-35 on 3-pointers, plus 6-of-14 at the free throw line.

Thus, the team turned to Russell, who attacked the paint with confidence the day after his 21st birthday.

The sophomore shot just 3-of-12 from 3-point range but hit 9-of-14 on two-pointers to rack up a game-high 29 points.

Russell also got involved in other areas, finishing with five rebounds, five assists and a career-high four steals.

“He had some really good moments,” head coach Luke Walton said. “I liked how he was vocal out there and tried to take charge. … Overall, I thought he had a good game.”

Russell was supplemented by proficient performances from Julius Randle and Jordan Clarkson.

The former notched a 13-point, 11-rebound double-double, while the latter provided 14 points, five rebounds, five assists, four steals and some admirable defense on Westbrook, who shot just 4-of-18 from the field.

Unfortunately for the Lakers, limiting the league’s leading scorer isn’t enough when that person is averaging a triple-double.

And Westbrook reached another one by the third quarter while setting up the likes of Alex Abrines and Andre Roberson, who both set new career-highs with 19 points.

The Thunder (33-25) also committed 20 turnovers, which the Lakers turned into 28 points, but it still wasn’t enough to prevent their 10th straight loss in Oklahoma City.

The Lakers kept it close early on, trimming OKC’s lead to four on a Russell layup within the final minute of the first half. However, the Thunder rolled forward from there, using a 20-7 run to push their lead up to 17 midway through the third.

From there, they would push that advantage to as high as 20 and never lower than nine.

New President of Basketball Operations Magic Johnson joined the team on the trip. … Corey Brewer scored two points on a fast-break dunk in his Lakers debut. … It was a tough night for the Lakers’ starting wings, as Nick Young and Brandon Ingram combined to shoot 5-of-21. … OKC’s Steven Adams had a 15-point, 10-rebound double-double. … A sold-out crowd of 18,203 packed Chesapeake Energy Arena.