The Los Angeles Lakers played without some of the their top guys again, but it didn’t matter.
The Lakers earned their third win in a row since the All-Star break by manhandling the lowly Minnesota Timberwolves, 137-121 on Tuesday at Staples Center.
As he’s done all season, LeBron James led the way, finishing with 25 points, 12 rebounds and 12 assists – his fifth double-double on the year.
Montrezl Harrell added 25 points off the bench. Harrell has scored at least 25 points in three of his last four games.
“Honestly man, I’m just out here enjoying myself,” Harrell said. “I’m enjoying my life, enjoying the game of basketball and just playing, leaving it all out there on the floor.
“I don’t try to come out there and put too much pressure on myself. I’ve done that before and things just went bad for me. So, really I’m just enjoying my life and playing the game that I love with all the passion that I have.”
The Lakers led by just one point, 71-70 at halftime, but turned up the defensive pressure in the second half and won going away, leading by as many as 18 points in the fourth quarter.
With the win, the Lakers improved to 27-13 on the year, while Minnesota dropped to 9-31.
Top player: Talen Horton-Tucker continues to play well, finishing with 16 points, seven rebounds and four assists.
What I liked: The Lakers outscored Minnesota’s bench 68-32.
What I didn’t like: Minnesota finished with nine steals and six blocks.
Injuries: Alex Caruso remains in the NBA’s concussion protocol but did some sprints on the floor before Tuesday’s game against Minnesota. Center Mark Gasol Gasol and Kostos Antetokounmpo are both still out due to the NBA’s health and safety protocols. Anthony Davis remains out with a right calf strain and Jared Dudley is rehabbing from a torn MCL in his right knee.
They said it: “I run the pickup games for the Lakers. So, when you’re trying to get back into shape or trying to get more reps – Let’s say Kyle Kuzma hasn’t played well in two games and he wants to stay after and play 4-on-4 or 5-on-5, I’m the guy who runs that.” -- Dudley on one of his roles with the Lakers, bringing energy in pickup games during practice to help get players ready for games.