The Los Angeles Lakers were expecting to cruise to an easy win Wednesday night.
They were on the road against the winless Oklahoma City Thunder, but were without LeBron James.
James’ absence did not seem to matter early as the Lakers jumped out to a 26-point lead.
The Thunder looked like the young team they are and it was time to coast to victory.
Instead, OKC mounted a comeback and even ended up winning the game by eight points.
This was a stunning collapse and actually broke a mind-blowing streak held by the Lakers.
The Lakers entered play with a 230-0 record (including playoffs) when leading by at least 25 points in a game over the last 25 seasons.
They led by 26 tonight, their largest blown lead over that span. pic.twitter.com/2fd5GdH5Dd
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) October 28, 2021
A 25-point lead was automatic for the Lakers throughout the past 25 years, until Wednesday night.
That is a shocking streak to break against what is supposed to be a bad team.
Missing Their Leader
There is something about James’ teams and how they collapse when he is not in the lineup.
It really should not matter if a 25-point lead comes early or late in the game.
That should be a tough deficit to blow regardless of the time on the clock or the opponent.
But the Thunder came out of the locker room hot in the third quarter and outscored the Lakers 41-23.
Mr. Triple-Double gets his first in Purple & Gold pic.twitter.com/fDDXFqBBGE
— Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) October 28, 2021
The Lakers managed only 20 points in the fourth and the spotlight ended up on Westbrook after he got ejected with seconds remaining following a late Darius Bazley dunk.
It was an ugly loss and one that makes history for the team.
These are not the types of streaks teams want to break, especially when the ultimate goal this season is to win a championship.