Four Takeaways From The Lakers' 128-113 Win Over The Brooklyn Nets
The Lakers continued their great road play with a 128-113 win over the Brooklyn Nets on Thursday on the second night of a back-to-back.
Here are our four takeaways from the game.
1. LeBron James only has 18 points to go
James had a triple-double with 27 points on 11-for-19 shooting, 12 rebounds and 10 assists on Thursday, putting him just 18 points away from passing Kobe Bryant on the all-time scoring list. Bryant is third on the list with 33,643 points, while James currently has 33,626 points.
James, who averages 25.1 points a game, will likely pass Bryant in Saturday's game at Philadelphia, the city where Bryant was born.
2. Lakers turned on the defense in the fourth
There wasn't much defense played Thursday until late in the game. The Lakers had a 75-70 lead over the Nets at halftime and the Lakers reached 100 points in the third quarter.
But with the Lakers up 95-94 with 50 seconds left in the third quarter, the Lakers went on a 26-2 run that extended midway through the fourth quarter to give them a 121-96 lead with five minutes and 32 seconds left.
The Lakers held the Nets scoreless for nearly five minutes in the fourth quarter.
3. The Lakers were on fire from the three-point line
The Lakers made a season-high 19 three-pointers against the Nets, shooting 50 percent from beyond the arc.
Six Lakers players made at least two three-pointers, including James, Jared Dudley, Alex Caruso, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Kyle Kuzma and Danny Green.
The most impressive three-pointer came from Dudley, who made a contested buzzer-beater at the end of the third quarter to give the Lakers a 104-94 lead.
A big celebration ensued, including Dudley excitedly jumping into Anthony Davis, Troy Daniels, Dwight Howard and James (twice). It was a fun display of support and joy from a group of players who truly like each other.
4. Another team effort
Six players scored in double-figures for the Lakers, including James, Davis, Howard, Green, Kuzma and Caldwell-Pope.
The Lakers shot 50 percent from the field and had one of those nights when the rim seems bigger than it is, as evidenced by the video below in which Davis makes a spin move and shoots a Hail Mary jumper from half court in the second quarter that swishes through the net. The basket didn't count, but it definitely deserves a mention.
With Thursday's win, the Lakers improved to an NBA-best 20-4 on the road and sit atop the Western Conference with a record of 36-9.
The Lakers have gone 3-1 so far on their five-game trip, only losing to Boston. They close out the trip Saturday in Philadelphia.