Lakers forward Anthony Davis (3) defends Celtics forward Jayson Tatum (0) (AP Photo/Ryan Sun)

Going into the second quarter against the Boston Celtics on Christmas Day, The Lakers were down by nine points. Guard Taurean Prince found an offensive rhythm that kept the Lakers competitive. Going into halftime, the Lakers cut their deficit into one.

He ended the night with 17 points, the second highest scorer next to forward Anthony Davis’ 40-point performance. Prince noted how he is working to be available on offense and staying consistent while holding himself up to his own personal standards.

“My teammates, coaches, stress for me to continue to have that mentality of catching and shooting,” Prince said. “With all those factors involved, it’s kind of hard not to feel free and play how you want to and be able to do your job.”

In December, Prince’s scoring has been trending upward as he scored in the double digits in the last nine of 12 games. Davis had been pouring in more shots, scoring over 25 points in the last seven games.

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“Obviously, [Davis] was phenomenal,” Lakers forward LeBron James said. “[Davis] just been on a tier lately.”

Despite their efforts, the Lakers have lost six of their last eight games, including their 126-115 loss to the Celtics.

Lakers forward LeBron James (23) scored 16 points, nine rebounds and eight assists (Amanda Scurlock/L.A. Sentinel)

“We got down early in the game … and then we worked our way back up at the half,” James said. “[We] played some good ball in the third for the first four or five minutes and then they was able to pull away.”

The Lakers had the most success when Prince played at shooting guard in the starting lineup. There was a stint this season where the Purple and Gold went 10-5 with Prince playing shooting guard.

Despite his 17-point performance, foul trouble plagued Prince and his teammates in the second half against the Celtics, they ended the night with 12 fouls. Their fouls allowed the Celtics to score 21 points in free throws.

“Third quarter [we] come out and then we put them on the free throw line, 14 free throws for them in the third [quarter],” said Lakers head coach Darvin Ham. “It really puts your defense in jeopardy; it causes you to play on your heels.”

Davis is confident in the Lakers’ offensive prowess but he mentioned how their defense needs to improve.

“We’re really good in transition and that kick-starts our offense,” Davis said. “When we’re not defending, it’s tough to get to our bread and butter, which is that transition that we play off of.”

The Lakers return home to battle the New Orleans Pelicans on December 28 at 7:30pm.