With Anthony Davis pouring in 42 points to go along with 12 rebounds, the Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Utah Jazz 116-108 in their third seeding game. With the win, the Lakers clinched the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference for the first time since the 2009-10 season.
After a disappointing showing against the Toronto Raptors, Davis came out of the gate aggressive, shooting the ball nearly every time down. Rudy Gobert was able to keep him in check as Davis missed his first handful of shots.
He made up for it with a couple of steals that led to easy baskets. Davis continued to look for his shot, nailing an open three and finishing near the rim to help put the Lakers in front but the Jazz kept it close toward the end of the first quarter.
Both teams struggled to score at the end but they went into the second tied at 24. Utah opened the second with a pair of threes to retake the lead, but LeBron James looked to get his teammates going by finding Kyle Kuzma and Dwight Howard for easy looks.
However, Donovan Mitchell began to heat up in the middle of the quarter, draining a pair of threes to keep the Jazz ahead.
Davis picked up where he left off, finishing a tough and-1 over Gobert and getting to the free throw line. Mitchell remained on the attack and was able to get to the rim to keep Los Angeles at bay.
Despite that, Davis took advantage of Gobert being off the floor and the Lakers were able to go into the half up 58-56.
The Jazz got off to a fast start in the third, opening up with an 8-0 run that forced a quick timeout from head coach Frank Vogel. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope gave the team a much-needed lift by knocking down a three and converting on a fast-break lay up, but Mike Conley answered with a three from the corner.
L.A. captured the momentum after forcing a few turnovers which ignited a 14-0 run to give them a double-digit lead. Emmanuel Mudiay banked in a buzzer-beater, but the Lakers took an 86-76 lead into the fourth quarter.
Their offense looked much sharper to begin the final 12 minutes thanks to James who scored a quick seven points, including a deep three from the wing. Even after James took a seat, the bench maintained the advantage and kept the team well ahead.
Los Angeles was able to maintain control, though needed to hold off a late rally attempt by the Jazz during the final few minutes.
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