The Los Angeles Lakers made big moves at the trade deadline to make a hard push for the playoffs, and they got a little closer to their goal after a huge comeback win against the Dallas Mavericks today. It was a barnburner of a victory that required them to come back from a 27-point second quarter deficit, and leading the way were the two stars that led them to the 2020 championship.
Anthony Davis was the game’s top scorer and finished the game with 30 points, 15 rebounds, four assists, a steal and three blocks. He shot 12 of 20 from the field, and he was crucial down the stretch in the Lakers’ victory. Davis made the go-ahead basket with two minutes left and he scored five of the Lakers’ final eight points in the 111-108 victory.
The NBA’s all-time top scorer wasn’t a slouch either, as James finished the game with 26 points, eight rebounds, three assists, a steal and a block. He had 11 points in the fourth quarter, which helped set the table for Davis’ heroics late in the game.
A lot of credit also has to go to the Lakers’ supporting cast. Jarred Vanderbilt, another player who came via a midseason trade, had a huge game with 15 points, 17 rebounds and four steals. Vanderbilt’s defense played a huge part in the victory, and he deserves praise.
Dennis Schroder also had himself a game with 16 points and 8 assists. He missed all four of his three-point attempts but went 5 of 8 on his attempts inside the arc and 6 of 6 from the charity stripe, including the two free throws that iced the game for the Lakers.
The victory puts the Lakers within 2.5 games of the sixth seed in the Western Conference, and they’re looking mighty dangerous now with both of their leading men looking healthy. The defeat will be a tough pill to swallow for the Mavericks, as today’s loss marks the third-worst blown lead in their history. It was also the biggest comeback of the season so far in the NBA.
Luka Doncic put up 26 points, nine rebounds, five assists and a steal in the loss. Kyrie Irving had 21 points, 11 rebounds and five assists, but he struggled from the field, shooting 8 of 22 overall and 2 of 10 from beyond the arc. Dallas are 1-3 so far when Doncic and Irving have both played, and 2-4 since Irving’s debut. It’s not quite time for the panic button yet, but the early returns on the blockbuster trade have not been encouraging. It could just be a matter of time before drama starts brewing in Dallas, especially since Irving is involved.
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