sThe “king” of Los Angeles, LeBron James, was there, but his presence did not prevent a new defeat for the Lakers, their third consecutive and ninth of the season, 130-108 against the Boston Celtics where striker Jason was. Tatum emerged with a doubling of 37 points and 11 rebounds.
Tatum, who signed a solid performance in the final three quarters of the match, was the game’s top scorer and also distributed assists, three steals and a stopper.
Only Anthony Davis of the Lakers came close to him with 31 points, 2 assists, 6 rebounds and 3 blocks. Teammate LeBron James had 23 points, 6 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 steals.
In the Celtics, Marcus Smart also distinguished himself with 22 points, 8 rebounds and 6 assists, and former Lakers Dennis Schroeder with 21 points and 6 assists.
With the return of LeBron James, who had missed the Lakers’ last eight games with a stomach injury, the Los Angeles team were confident of beating their archenemy and avoiding their third straight defeat.
Meanwhile, the Celtics, still without two superstars, Jalen Brown and Robert Williams III, lost Wednesday in Atlanta to the Hawks despite the impressive performance of Jason Tatum, who finished the season with 34 points and nine rebounds.
For the two teams, who entered Friday night’s game in ninth place in the Eastern (Boston) and Western (Los Angeles) Conferences, winning over their historic rivals was double the value.
The Lakers started the game more focused than the Celtics thanks to Anthony Davis who quickly discovered the defensive weaknesses of the Boston team.
The California player scored in the Lakers’ first six points and pushed his team to 7-13 in the first four minutes of the game. Frank Vogel’s team was 12 points ahead, 12-24, with five minutes remaining in the first quarter.
But late in that period Celtics guard Marcus Smart and goalkeeper Josh Richardson showed up when Boston needed a break. The two were responsible for the Celtics’ 16-point addition in the final five minutes of the first quarter, trimming the Lakers’ lead to eight points, 30-38.
The fourth ended with Davis scoring 15 points, compared to 11 from Smart and 9 from Richardson.
But in the second quarter, Tatum and Schroeder started playing more. Tatum, who scored just 3 points in the first 12 minutes, started fourth with a hat-trick while Schroeder, five points in the first quarter, scored another six in the first three minutes.
The Lakers lost their strength and the Celtics had three points 39-42 with nine minutes left. Tatum seized the moment and doubled down on his attacks on the Lakers’ basket.
Close to hitting the basket 4.39 before the break, Tatum took a 49-48 lead over the Celtics even though the Lakers, led by Karl Anthony, James and Davis, were able to finish the second quarter by a point difference of 60-61.
In the first half, Davis already had 18 points against 13 from James and only 3 from Russell Westbrook, while in the Celtics, Tatum led with 17 points against 15 from Schroeder and 13 from Smart.
But after the break, the Celtics turned the game around thanks to greater defensive coordination. Once they stepped onto the field, Smart and Al Horford each scored five points while the Lakers were satisfied with two points from James.
Round 10-2 placed the 70-63 scoreboard for the Celtics. Boston’s advantage continued to increase in the third quarter. In the Lakers, Davis maintained that level in the period with eight points, but neither James, who scored four, nor Westbrook, three, could improve the Lakers’ position.
When the fourth quarter began, Boston was 11 points ahead, 93-82.
In the final 12 minutes, the Celtics were limited to running the lead on the scoreboard without James and his company being able to convincingly approach the Boston side.
In the absence of 4.26 for the end of the match, and when the scoreboard indicated 119-100 for the locals, Vogel threw in the towel and put all the substitutions on the field.
The Celtics coach did the same, allowing Spain’s Juancho Hernández to enjoy 3.45 minutes on the field in which the Madrid striker earned 2 rebounds and a steal.
In the end, the Celtics won by 22 points, 130-108 in a game in which the Lakers’ most positive thing was James’ recovery.
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