Sunday, May 26, 2024

LeBron scores 30 as Lakers avoid elimination with a 119-108 win


Share post:


LOS ANGELES, April 28: The Los Angeles Lakers finally cracked the Denver Nuggets’ mastery of this rivalry and extended their playoff lives for at least another game.
To absolutely nobody’s surprise, LeBron James led the way.
James scored 30 points, Anthony Davis added 25 points and 23 rebounds, and the Lakers avoided postseason elimination with a 119-108 victory over Denver in Game 4 of their first-round series Saturday night.
D’Angelo Russell and Austin Reaves scored 21 points apiece for the seventh-seeded Lakers, who snapped their 11-game losing streak against the defending NBA champions with their first win over the Nuggets since December 2022.
A series with clear patterns and rhythms finally changed in the Lakers’ favor. For the fourth straight game, Los Angeles took a double-digit lead before the Nuggets rallied in the second half behind Nikola Jokic.
But for the first time in this series, the Lakers didn’t wilt under the defending champions’ pressure. The 39-year-old James scored 14 points in the fourth quarter on 6-of-8 shooting, again carrying the Lakers late in his 21st NBA season.
Game 5 is Monday night in Denver.“We’ve given ourselves another lifeline, and it’s a one-game series for us,” James said.
“Monday’s game is the most important game of the season for us, and we understand that.”
Denver swept Los Angeles out of the Western Conference finals last season, but the current Lakers responded to this 0-3 deficit with a performance more worthy of a team that rolled into the postseason with 12 wins in 15 games.“We get another opportunity to go play one more game, and if we win, come back and play another one and keep moving from there,” Reaves said.
“Odds aren’t stacked in our favor, but anytime we can keep ourselves floating above water and give ourselves an opportunity to do something special, we’re up for the challenge.”
Jokic had 33 points, 14 rebounds and 14 assists for his 18th career triple-double and second in this series, but the two-time MVP and his teammates couldn’t reassert their usual late-game dominance over the Lakers.
The Lakers’ 19-point lead with just over six minutes left dwindled to 113-106 on Jokic’s three-point play with 1:25 remaining, but Reaves hit a short jumper before adding four free throws in the final minute.
Denver ultimately couldn’t overcome yet another slow offensive start in a series full of them.
“Of course we want to (start faster), but I learned in horse racing, it’s not how you start, it’s how you finish,” Jokic said. “We didn’t finish today really well, so hopefully we can do a better job. But yes, we want to be up and control the game, but it seems like that didn’t happen to us.”
Michael Porter Jr. had 27 points and 11 rebounds for Denver, and Jamal Murray scored 22 points while going 0 for 4 on 3-point attempts. Aaron Gordon had just seven points for the Nuggets after putting up 29 in Game 3 during the highest-scoring playoff game of his career — but offense wasn’t the Nuggets’ problem, according to coach Michael Malone.
“The paint (defense) was a joke,” Malone said after his team allowed a whopping 72 points in the paint.“Every huddle, I sounded like a broken record tonight,” Malone added. “Every huddle was, ‘Paint, paint, paint.’ (In) Game 3, they had 70 and we found a way to win.” (AP)


Related articles

Synced brains: Why being constantly tuned in to your child’s every need isn’t always ideal

It’s crucial for healthy child development that children can form secure attachment bonds with their parents. Decades of...

Germaine Acogny — the mother of African dance

By Lliane Loots Africa’s most celebrated dancer and choreographer, Germaine Acogny, turns 80 on 28 May. I have had...

Vote chanani somoio Section 144 CrPC-ko Congress jegala

SHILLONG: June 4 tariko, Lok Sabha election-ni vote-rangko chane parakatani salo Section 144 CrPC-ko district administration-ni ra·gatataniara namjabataona...

M’laya must brace for severe weather

 IMD’s red warning; extremely heavy rainfall likely Umiam logs third highest temperature for May By Our Reporter SHILLONG, May...