Lakers makes it past Kings at home, 122-114.

NBA: LeBron James and Malik Monk.

NBA: The Lakers created a mess in defending the paint, and LeBron James and Russell Westbrook were off the usual performance but the Lakers pulled off a 122-114 victory over the Sacramento Kings.

Kings had best of Lakers in 3 point %, assist, Field goal %, and FT% too. But the Lakers had some better stats in Points in the paint and points off a turnover.

It was all because of some clutch buckets from James and a stellar performance from Talen Horton-Tucker off the bench. Contributions from Malik Monk and Dwight Howard also helped the Lakers to win.

NBA, Lakers vs Kings: Dwight Howard.
Dwight Howard.

Despite having a slow start, Lebron ended the match with 12-26 buckets and manage to score 31 points to help the Lakers win. The 31 points included some bizarre 3-pointers in the fourth quarter. James went head to head with Buddy Hield in the last quarter.

LeBron, as expected, came out on the top in the heated battle against Buddy. LeBron scored or assisted on 20 of the Lakers’ 37 points in the final period. He was a beast in the final minutes of the game.

Russ too had a horrific start with just 1-8 tries with T to his name after 1st quarter. Russ finally settled in during the second half to finish with 19 points, and most impressively also ended the game with zero turnovers.

While Westbrook suffered to score, THT had the best game in weeks. He scored his first 3 in 5 games and had 19 points to his name off the bench. Hopefully, it’s a sign of things to come.

NBA, Lakers vs Kings: Carmelo Anthony and DeAaron Fox.
Carmelo Anthony and DeAaron Fox.

Talking about off the bench, Dwight nearly had a double-double in the first half with 12 points and 8 rebounds that led to 14 points 14 rebounds at the end of regulation. Meanwhile, Malik Monk(the starting SG) was able to score 24 points, which included some late buckets in the clutch time.

But although L.A. has seen much more success offensively with LeBron playing heavier minutes than he’s used to on center, they’re still lacking a lot defensively without Anthony Davis healthy, as evidenced by how they were torched by two journeymen centers in Jones and Len tonight.

This game was an example of how they can stay small and take advantage of the extra spacing that gives them, clearing driving lanes for James and Westbrook, but also how they can integrate a little more size with Howard when necessary to help stop the bleeding on defense.