Lakers Playoff Highlights: LeBron James Early, Rajon Rondo Takes Over Late


The Los Angeles Lakers were able to build upon their impressive Game 2 performance and win Game 3 against the Houston Rockets, 112-102.

The Rockets’ defense has been stingy all series long as they have made it a point to pack the paint and prevent the Lakers from using their size and length to dominate inside. However, the first quarter was a shootout as each team was able to execute in the half court and score with almost no problem.

LeBron James was a man on a mission as the superstar was more aggressive than usual hunting his own shots. James mixed in a flurry of hard-nosed drives and tough jumpers to score 29 points in the first half.

James was also an impact defender as he rotated over for a few highlight blocks, particularly in the second half that seemed to jumpstart the rest of Los Angeles’s offense. James finished the night with 36 points, seven rebounds, five assists and four blocks.

Anthony Davis had himself another fantastic showing, once again shooting well in the midrange area and helping quarterback the defense. The second half featured the big man at center as Lakers head coach Frank Vogel opted to go smaller to help open up driving lanes on the offensive end.

The Lakers collectively held their breath after Davis took an inadvertent elbow to the side in a collision with Robert Covington, but fortunately he was able to close out the game. He recorded another double-double (26 points, 15 rebounds) while adding six assists.

While James and Davis were the backbone for Los Angeles, Rajon Rondo once again came up huge when the game was close. Rondo had a rough outing shooting in the first half, not able to capitalize on wide open looks Houston was happy to give him.

The fourth quarter was a completely different story as Rondo nailed two big threes to extend the lead and followed it up with a steal on James Harden for a layup. The veteran point guard outscored the Rockets bench by himself, pouring in 21 points to go along with nine assists.

Going small allows Los Angeles to rotate faster to Houston’s shooters while also allowing them to get out on the break sooner. This was apparent in the second half and something the team can hang their hats on.

What’s next for Lakers

Now up 2-1 in the series, the Lakers can not afford to let their foot off the gas pedal as the Rockets did lead for most of Game 3.

The defensive effort in the third and fourth quarters was the difference in this game, and they will need that same intensity if they want to take a commanding 3-1 lead after Game 4.

Have you subscribed to our YouTube channel? It’s the best way to watch player interviews, exclusive coverage from events, participate in live shows, and more!

You May Also Like

Lakers News: Kobe Bryant’s ‘Mamba Moments’ To Be Introduced In NBA 2K24

Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant is being honored league-wide as Mamba Day — August 24 — comes around…

Gregg Popovich On D’Angelo Russell, Julius Randle, Brandon Ingram

Gregg Popovich, widely regarded as the top coach in the NBA, is the head coach of the 2016 USA Select Team, which features three Los Angeles Lakers: D’Angelo Russell, Julius Randle, and Brandon Ingram…

Los Angeles Lakers Vs. San Antonio Spurs Postgame (VIDEOS)

The Los Angeles Lakers didn’t put up much a fight in their 119-98 loss to the San Antonio Spurs on Sunday night, their first game back at home since the All-Star break and the sweeping changes in the front office regime…

Spectrum SportsNet’s Allie Clifton Makes History As First Woman To Call Lakers Game

LeBron James wasn’t the only Los Angeles Lakers legend who was out for the team’s final game before the All-Star break…