The Los Angeles Lakers scored a season-high 73 points in the first half on the seventh-best defense in the NBA, and had their way in 131-113 victory against the Miami Heat, extending their winning streak to four games.
Isaiah Thomas made six attempts from deep en route to scoring a game-high and season-high 29 points. He made three 3-pointers in the fourth quarter, helping the Lakers’ stave off a Heat rally.
Julius Randle scored 25 points, adding six rebounds and two assists. He keyed the Lakers going on separate runs of 8-0 and 12-0 early in the first quarter to jump out to a 13-point lead.
That was despite the Heat starting a larger frontcourt than normal and putting Hassan Whiteside on Randle to begin the night and during various stretches of the game.
While the Heat managed to mount several comebacks, including twice taking the lead in the first quarter, the Lakers had an answer each time. One instance was in the third quarter, during which time Brandon Ingram scored 11 of his 19 points.
One game after nine players scoring in double-figures for the first time since 1987, the Lakers had six such players against the Heat.
That’s all the more impressive when taking into account head coach Luke Walton shortened his rotation to eight players, with Corey Brewer agreeing to a buyout and Josh Hart set to undergo hand surgery.
Lonzo Ball was not part of that group, as he scored eight points. But Ball did have six rebounds, seven assists and six steals over 34 minutes in what was his first start since returning from a sprained MCL.
With the Heat wearing their ‘Miami Vice’ city edition uniforms, Dwyane Wade also turned back the clock on a personal level. He led the team with 25 points off the bench, making multiple acrobatic baskets.
With their 27th win, the Lakers have improved on last season’s record and have 21 games remaining to further build on it. It’s also the franchise’s most wins since 2014, and their first in Miami since 2008.
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