EL SEGUNDO — Before the lights went out and the Lakers watched film from Tuesday's game, assistant coach Brian Shaw stood in front of the team and spoke.
It wasn't a soliloquy or speech, just a from-the-heart talk by the former Lakers guard about how embarrassed he was about the guards' defense.
The Lakers gave up 112 points Tuesday to the Portland Trail Blazers, a 10th-place team averaging 95.2 points.
Making matters worse was how easily the Trail Blazers penetrated inside, blowing past the guards to shoot 50.6 percent from the floor.
"The first line of defense starts with the guards," Shaw said Wednesday.
"There's a guard bringing the ball up the court and there's a guard guarding him. The center, the wings and forwards, what they are going to see is the energy the guard is putting into the ball and how active he is.
"That's going to trickle down to them. So our guards are just going through the motion and letting a guy take the ball wherever he wants to take it."
Shaw said he was especially upset with how lackadaisical the players were in the second half, knowing they had a chance to gain on first-place New Orleans in the standings. The Hornets lost a rare home game before the Lakers' game was finished.
"I mentioned at halftime probably four times that New Orleans had lost," Shaw said. "(And I said) so here's our chance to gain a game. They lost, we had a terrible first half, so let's come out with more energy."
The Lakers erased an 18-point deficit, pulling to within three points with 54.9 seconds left, but couldn't catch Portland down the stretch.
"We didn't come out like we wanted," Shaw said. "It was embarrassing."
Shaw said the players sat quietly during his talk, which was directed at Kobe Bryant, Derek Fisher, Jordan Farmar and Sasha Vujacic.
"(It was to) all the guards who played last night," Shaw said. "Nobody said anything."
Shaw took responsibility for their play, saying he has given the players liberties during practices, which has led to bad habits.
"Being a guard and working with the guards every day, I personally take the responsibility for the way our guards played," he said.
"We've been walking around like we're better than we are."
After Shaw's monologue, the team watched the film and Coach Phil Jackson said they talked about how to shore up the defense and rotation.
"They have good shooters up there in Portland and we let their penetration bother us," Jackson said.