Max Christie, a Rookie With the Lakers, Claims He Will Improve After Making a Mistake Against the Kings in the Last Seconds

Lakers guard Max Christie defends against Sacramento Kings guard Malik Monk on Wednesday at Arena.
Lakers guard Max Christie defends against Sacramento Kings guard Malik Monk on Wednesday at Arena.(Ashley Landis / Associated Press)

Max Christie found himself in an unavoidable situation, the Lakers rookie just wanting to make the correct play — and more so, the thought of the rookie guard playing in the fourth quarter when the game was on the line was somewhat unexpected in and of itself.

Christie really played 27 minutes and 10 seconds that were more than adequate, and his 12 points kept the injured Lakers in the game against the Sacramento Kings on Wednesday night at Arena, which they ultimately lost.

But Christie's foul with 5.0 seconds remaining and the Lakers down 112-111 is the play that stands out. Christie had little choice but to commit the foul, and in many ways, it was one he did because of his basketball "instincts."

With seven seconds left, Kendrick Nunn hit a three-pointer to bring the Lakers within one point. De'Aaron Fox was forced to give up the ball as the Lakers trapped him all over the court. Richaun Holmes was ahead of all the Lakers at half court when Fox gave the ball to him. Christie made a foul to stop the clock as she ran and grabbed Holmes from behind.

The issue was that Holmes was awarded two free throws after Christie was penalized for a clear-path foul, which the officials examined and upheld.

For a Kings advantage of 114-111, he made both. Sacramento received the ball back as a result of the clear-path foul regulations. After being fouled, Trey Lyles converted two free throws for the final score of 116-111.

Christie replied, "I mean, honestly, I just went with my gut. "I just felt like I had to go foul him in some way because he obviously had a clear path to the rim, but time was running out and we were down. Unfortunately, the foul was on a clear route. I made an attempt to move to the front but failed. But having to deal with that circumstance on the spot for the first time is a valuable lesson for me to learn. I've never experienced that before. I'll watch the movie to see what I could have done differently and apply what I've learned from it.

LeBron James, a 20-year veteran, recognized the situation that led to his young teammate's foul.

Giving up on a play is foolish since there are players ahead of you. You simply accept the foul, James said. "Max was acting in accordance with his convictions. He most likely hasn't... I don't believe he has ever been in that situation during his first season.

He sees a center breaking away and taking the ball away from their greatest player, therefore he will commit a foul. He also failed to notice Harrison Barnes, who was standing to his right and in front of him. The play's challenging portion is thus that. He was able to learn this tonight, though, because experience is the best teacher in life.

Christie was in this situation as a result of Darvin Ham, the Lakers' coach, having faith in him.

Christie contributed for 9:46 of the fourth period, sinking a three-pointer to bring the Lakers within 98-97.

Christie remarked, "Knowing how the coaches and teammates have trusted me to be there in those type of crucial moments, especially in my rookie year, is definitely a lot of confidence." "There is a lot I can learn. I'm simply practicing being comfortable in those circumstances. But playing with those guys in that kind of game definitely boosts my confidence.

Assistance on the boards

The Lakers struggled against the Kings on the backboards and gave up far too many points.

The Lakers lost the rebound battle, 47-36. Even worse, the Kings had 14 offensive rebounds, which resulted in 20 points from second chances.

They beat us there, remarked Wenyen Gabriel. "We were battling for rebounds there, but they produced more of those. On the boards tonight, they humiliated us. It's difficult to bounce back from that, particularly when games are decided by one or two scores, as they have been in our last two contests. Every possession is important.

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