LeBron James and Austin Reeves power Lakers’ offense in win over Nets

Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (center) takes a shot at Brooklyn Nets guard Dennis Smith Jr. (4) during the first half of an NBA preseason game in Las Vegas on Monday, Oct. 9, 2023. ) and Lonnie Walker IV (right).  (AP Photo/Sam Morris)

It wasn’t surprising to see the Lakers look fractured in Saturday’s preseason opener in San Francisco, with too many possessions determined by too much dribbling and not enough movement or passing.

That could be what happens in a debut — especially with LeBron James and Austin Reeves on the bench.

But in Game 2 of the preseason, the Lakers offense started to come alive with two of their best passers back on the floor, giving a glimpse of what the upcoming season could look like.

All five starters scored at least 10 points as the Lakers defeated Brooklyn 129-126 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

The Lakers scored 75 points in the first half before James and Davis came off the bench. Reeves scored 18 points entering the third quarter.

James scored 10 points and 5 assists, and Davis performed well for the second consecutive preseason game, scoring 13 points, 7 rebounds and 3 blocks in just 14 minutes.

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The Lakers led for much of the game until both benches were empty, and former Laker Lonnie Walker IV helped the Nets take a quick lead in the final minutes. However, the Lakers forced turnovers and created a dunk opportunity for rookie Maxwell Lewis to take the lead.

Rui Hachimura scored a Lakers-high 19 points, D’Angelo Russell had 14 points and 6 assists, and Taurean Prince scored 13 points.

Prince made his first start without Jared Vanderbilt and hit 5 of 7 shots, including three 3-pointers.

The Lakers continue preseason action against Sacramento on Wednesday in Anaheim.

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This story originally appeared in the Los Angeles Times.

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