The Los Angeles Lakers took another big lead over the Golden State Warriors and this time they made sure not to let up for a deflating loss.
The Lakers had eight players score at least nine points and led by as many as 35 on the night as they dominated the Warriors 117-91. The win was their second straight since point guard Dennis Schroder returned, and pushed the Lakers ahead into second place in the Western Conference standings.
There was no doubt about the outcome from the beginning as the Lakers immediately established their dominance. L.A. pulled ahead 20-5 early on and scored a season-high 41 points in the first quarter. They had 73 in the first half, which was another a season-high mark.
LeBron James led the Lakers with 19 points, six rebounds, four assists, two steals and two blocks as he once again set the tone on both sides of the floor. Most importantly was that James played only 24 minutes, a season-low for him, and didn’t touch the floor in the fourth quarter.
After playing so many minutes in the month of February, and with the All-Star break coming up this week, getting LeBron some extra rest was undoubtedly a major positive.
The Lakers also got the best game of the season from Markieff Morris, who finished with 13 points, eight rebounds and four assists. Marc Gasol provided a spark early with all nine of his points coming in the first quarter. He also provided great defense and passing the rest of the night.
Dennis Schroder didn’t shoot the ball great, but still finished with 12 points and six assists and was a team high +32 in just 25 minutes. Alex Caruso also had another great game with 13 points, four rebounds and four assists. Kyle Kuzma added a double-double with 12 points and 11 rebounds, while Talen Horton-Tucker scored 11 points to go along with three steals.
Lakers fans also got their first look at Damian Jones, who recently joined the team on a 10-day contract. Jones showed off his athleticism and defensive potential, finishing with eight points, three rebounds, and two blocks. However, he went straight to the locker room after checking out in the middle of the fourth quarter and was diagnosed with a lower back strain.
The Lakers dominated in all facets of the game, out-rebounding the Warriors 60-35, while forcing 20 turnovers that led to 22 points. They also got to the free throw line 38 times and hit 11 3-pointers.
Next up for the Lakers
The Lakers finish off the first half of the season with a back-to-back, hosting the Phoenix Suns on Tuesday before heading to Sacramento to face the Kings in their last game before the All-Star break.
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