The Los Angeles Lakers kept their momentum going as they ran away with a 134-118 victory over the Atlanta Hawks.
Avery Bradley, fresh off his contract getting guaranteed for the rest of the season, was involved early as he hit two open 3-pointers, and the transition offense got going as LeBron James and Malik Monk got loose for dunks that led to a 13-6 Laker lead. Monk ran out for another slam and followed it up with a 3-pointer to put Los Angeles up 18-8 early.
Bradley was more aggressive than usual and it paid off as he earned an and-one opportunity and cut along the baseline for an easy layup. Carmelo Anthony was able to heat up quickly with a pair of 3-pointers, and the Lakers would take a 34-28 lead into the second.
Talen Horton-Tucker picked up where he left off the last game as he was able to finish at the rim on a couple of drives to start the second quarter. Monk then caught fire from the field as he simply could not miss while Russell Westbrook finally joined in on the scoring fun and pushed the Laker lead to 19.
The Hawks began to climb back into game after getting into the bonus, with Trae Young the primary beneficiary of those attempts. Despite’s Monk’s hot shooting, the Laker defense failed to slow down Young and they would head into halftime only up 64-61.
Monk did not cool off coming out of the locker room as he shot the basketball with confidence and helped the Lakers retake control of the game. Los Angeles was able to force a few turnovers which allowed them to go back up by 10.
Atlanta continued to battle back and keep things within striking distance, though Anthony drew a flagrant foul which gave Los Angeles some breathing room. Horton-Tucker electrified Crypto.com Arena with a poster over Onyeka Okongwu, while Anthony’s perimeter shooting left the Lakers with a 101-87 lead going into the fourth.
James began to take control as he stripped Clint Capela and ran the other way for a lob, then later drained a deep 3 to keep L.A. well ahead. Atlanta had zero answers for James who had his jumper working, though they did manage to keep the deficit manageable.
Anthony and Bradley provided some much-needed offense outside of James, keeping the Hawks at arm’s length. Monk air-balled a corner three, but immediately made up for it by picking up a steal and dishing to James for a dunk that sealed the Lakers’ victory.
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