The Los Angeles Lakers hosted the Memphis Grizzlies on Tuesday night, looking to earn a victory on the night Pau Gasol saw his No. 16 jersey go into the rafters.
It was an incredible ceremony at halftime, but more importantly, the Lakers came away with a 112-103 win to improve to 32-34.
Malik Beasley got the scoring started with a 3-pointer, although outside of that the Lakers got off to a slow start with some careless turnovers to trail 10-6 early.
Anthony Davis got going from there with three buckets in a row, including a couple that came off offensive rebounds. That was the start on another exceptional first quarter for Davis as he was dominant on both ends with 13 points and nine rebounds. The Lakers also began to lock in defensively, although Santi Aldama beat the buzzer with a 3-pointer to cut L.A.’s lead to 23-21 through one.
Austin Reaves began to take over early in the second quarter, creating offense for himself and his teammates to extend the Lakers’ lead to 32-25. Guys like Aldama and John Konchar kept Memphis close though and Davis was forced to miss a few minutes after being hit in the face, allowing the Grizzlies to regain the lead.
The Grizzlies went on an 18-9 run with Davis in the locker room, although once he came back the Lakers went on a run of their own to head into the halftime locker room trailing 57-56.
After Gasol’s ceremony at halftime, both teams came out a bit sloppy in the third quarter. After Tyus Jones earned a flagrant call on a 3-point attempt, Troy Brown Jr. responded with a 3 of his own to tie the game. Brown then came up with a big steal and dunk in transition, earning a three-point play to help L.A. regain the lead.
That sequence injected some life into the arena and the Lakers closed the quarter well to take an 82-80 lead into the fourth quarter.
It didn’t take long for the Grizzlies to regain the lead in the fourth with David Roddy drilling a 3 and then Desmond Bane scoring at the rim to lead a 9-1 run before Reaves responded with a layup.
After a quiet third quarter, the Lakers needed Davis to get going again and he was able to do that with three buckets in a row with the final being a three-point play to get his team back within one.
Rui Hachimura helped the Lakers regain the lead midway through the fourth with a pair of free throws and a midrange jumper, although Tyus Jones continued to answer with big buckets for Memphis.
The Lakers finally started to gain some separation late though with the Grizzlies missing some easy shots and Davis continuing his dominance. He came up with a big rebound and then found Hachimura for a transition layup.
After the Lakers built their lead up to seven, Jared Jackson Jr. hit a 3 to keep his team within striking distance, although Reaves answered with a bank shot as Memphis simply could not get the stops they needed. Brown then put the game on ice with a 3 with the crowd erupting in celebration.
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