There weren’t any problems for the Los Angeles Lakers to reach their 20th win of the season tonight. The purple and gold easily defeated the Portland Trail Blazers at the Moda Center, 136-113, making a statement once again that they want nothing but the NBA title this season.
Anthony Davis was harassing the home team, with the All-Star center pouring 39 points in 32 minutes, frustrating the Trail Blazers on both ends of the floor. The Eyebrow was 12 for 21 from the field, missed two of his 15 free-throw attempts, while also having a decent stats in other categories. One of the best centers in the past few decades had 9 boards, three blocks, and two steals.
LeBron James was right behind him with 31 buckets in 34 minutes. King James added 8 assists, 7 rebounds, and hit four threes. The two Lakers’ superstars once again proved that they didn’t need to much time to develop fantastic chemistry.
“We both respect each other, we know what we both can do on the floor on both ends, and when we got out and run and we run and take pick and roll, it’s hard to guard,” said AD. “He’s able to shoot the ball, and if they go under, he’s a monster attacking the basket, and I’m rolling or popin’, and it kinda mixes up the defensive scheme.”
Anthony Davis hits the 4-point play and gets some love from LeBron. 😂 pic.twitter.com/jJKBQukqTw
— Legion Hoops (@LegionHoops) December 7, 2019
The first period was pretty close, with both sides changing the lead several times. But in the final two minutes, the Lakers made a 10-2 run closing this sequence and getting the swing.
Then came the knockout in the early part of the second quarter. Lakers would score 15 unanswered points, with Rajon Rondo opening the surge with back-to-back threes to ignite his teammates. In no time the guests went to 19-point distance, 58-39. Eventually, Frank Vogel’s side dropped 78 points in the first 24 minutes.
They didn’t have any problems to seal this match routinely, with the gap between them and the Trail Blazers becoming wider and wider.
Among the home team, Damian Lillard had 29 points, with 8 boards and 7 assists. Hassan Whiteside posted a double-double with 17 points and 10 boards, while Anfernee Simmons got 15 off the bench. Head coach Stotts was ejected during the game after protesting for some of the officials’ calls. He was very frustrated with the fact that Davis went to the foul stripe often.
“I am not going to talk about the officiating,” he said after the game. “Obviously I didn’t agree with some of the calls.”
CJ McCollum and Carmelo Anthony both had 15 each, with the not that they combined 9 for 26 shooting from the field.
Lakers outrebounded Portland 45-34, and they also had way better shooting percentage, with 54.1% from the floor, while Blazers went 45.3.
Kyle Kuzma had 15 buckets off the bench, Dwight Howard 10 boards, while Javale McGee scored 13 points. Lakers bench all scored points but Jared Dudley.
“These guys are doing little things, and therefore any chance we get to be able to find these guys and make plays we want to give it to them, we want to reward them and to thank them for doing all the little things. That’s how you win championship,” said Davis about his teammates who are not in the starting lineup.
The Lakers now have 20 wins and three losses and have a comfortable lead in the Western Conference standings, ahead of the Mavs who are 15-6. But they will have a tough schedule over the next two weeks. After hosting the Orlando Magic at home, the LAL is heading on a five-game tour through the East. Their opponents will be the Magic, Heat, Hawks, Pacers, Bucks.
Meanwhile, the Blazers (9-14) are way below the playoff zone. Terry Stotts’ guys will have a chance to improve that, as they host the Thunder and the Knicks in the upcoming two matches.
Nikola Velickovic is a sports journalist who loves to write and read on all sports. Nikola contributes both news updates and functions as a sports breaking news writer at WagerBop.