The Los Angeles Lakers returned home and hosted the Houston Rockets on Sunday night, looking to avenge their previous loss to them.
LeBron James and Anthony Davis were both able to play despite their respective ailments and they were able to lead the Lakers to a big 105-104 win.
The Lakers got off to a quick 7-0 start as Davis made back-to-back buckets and then D’Angelo Russell drilled a 3-pointer before Dillon Brooks got the Rockets on the board.
Once the Rockets got over their slow start, they caught fire as Fred VanVleet made a pair of 3-pointers. Meanwhile, Taurean Prince and the Lakers were ice cold, allowing Houston to build its first double digit lead.
Austin Reaves helped get the second unit going offensively with a deep triple although the Lakers still went into the second quarter trailing 28-20.
The Lakers scored six straight to begin the second quarter with James finding Rui Hachimura for a pair of easy layups, forcing a quick Rockets timeout. James then went to work for himself, drilling a 3 and then making a pair of free throws to give the Lakers the lead.
L.A. had a poor close to the half, however, with Brooks making another 3 and Jalen Green made a layup to give the Rockets a 55-49 lead going into the locker room.
The Lakers came out with a clear plan in the third quarter and that was to attack Rockets big man Alperen Sengun, who got into foul trouble and had to hit the bench with four very early in the second half. That allowed Davis to go to work down low as he and James had some easy buckets to help the Lakers regain the lead once again.
With the Rockets struggling offensively, Brooks and Jeff Green came up with some big buckets to keep their team in it. The Lakers couldn’t make an open 3-pointer until Cam Reddish finally hit one. James then went at Brooks for a bucket to give L.A. an 81-75 lead going into the fourth.
James scored to begin the fourth quarter and all of a sudden the Lakers had their biggest lead at eight although the Rockets started chipping away from there to keep it close. Brooks continued his big night with back-to-back triples to get them back within one at 94-93 as the game went into its final minutes.
Luckily, James also had it going and responded with a triple of his own to keep things from getting away from the Lakers as Davis took a short rest with five fouls.
The game went into the final minute tied at 100 when Davis was called for a charge and fouled out. The Lakers were able to get a big stop though and then Reaves drilled another deep 3 to put the Lakers ahead with 23.7 to play.
Sengun followed up with a layup to get the Rockets within one, and then Reaves made one of two at the line to put L.A. up by two. Sengun then scored with ease again to tie it with four seconds left.
That gave the Lakers one last look at the buzzer, and James got fouled with 1.9 to play. He made one free throw, so the Lakers were able to earn the win.
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