Anthony Davis had 27 points and 14 rebounds and the Los Angeles Lakers beat Houston 107-97 on Saturday night, leaving the Rockets winless on the road. Austin Reeves, who came off the bench, scored 18 points, and LeBron James scored 16 points and 7 assists.
Fred VanVleet scored 22 points and Alperon Sengon had 21 points and 13 rebounds. The Rockets suffered a three-game losing streak and lost 0-8 on the road.
Houston coach Ime Udoka was ejected for taunting James with 8:35 left in the game, and James received a technical foul.
“We had a conversation but they didn’t like what they heard,”Udoka was referring to the referee.
The Lakers dominated the paint 54-34, and their bench outscored the Rockets’ bench 33-24.
Sengen scored 12 points in the third quarter. The Rockets defeated the Lakers 28-20 and fell behind 86-72 entering the fourth quarter.
After holding Houston to 60 percent shooting in the first quarter, Davis missed his first six shots and the Lakers took control of the game in the second quarter. Reeves scored 15 points – a career high in a single quarter – and went on a 29-4 run. Davis also scored 8 points, and the Lakers led 58-40. VanVleet scored six points in a row, and the Rockets led 60-44 at halftime.
“This was probably one of our best quarters of the year, especially the first half. We’re not a first-half team,” James said. “It comes with defense, getting out there, sharing the ball, moving the ball, and AR was special in the second period.”
Hachimura was expected to play for the Lakers but did not play a week after undergoing nose surgery.
“Except for his nose, he’s in good health.”coach Davon Hamm said.
James cleverly made a 360-degree reverse layup at the end of the second quarter.
“It’s crazy,” Davis said. “At this point in his career, he’s done all the things he’s really going out and trying to see what works.”
His teammate Christian Wood received a technical foul for entering the court, and the Lakers bench erupted along with the public.
“We’re going to embrace it,” James said of the technology. “I just wanted to play and I felt like that was the best way to end this game.”
When James fell to the ground, he couldn’t see the ball. “The fans let me know I did it, and then my teammates, running down the field or whatever they were doing out there, had me watching on the big screen because he stopped the game because of a technical.”
Ham commented: “The most impressive thing is what he has done in his career. He seems to be breaking barriers every day.”
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