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Tuesday, April 20, 2021

LeBron James Triple-Doubles as Lakers Dominate Stephen Curry, Warriors

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Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James, right, shoots against Golden State Warriors center James Wiseman (33) during the first half of an NBA basketball game in San Francisco, Monday, March 15, 2021. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

Jeff Chiu/Associated Press

The Los Angeles Lakers earned their second straight win following the All-Star break, beating the Golden State Warriors 128-97 on Monday at Chase Center in San Francisco.

The Lakers held a slim lead after the first quarter and broke the game open in the second. The Warriors would’ve been staring at a bigger halftime deficit if Andrew Wiggins’ buzzer-beater hadn’t made it a 15-point game.

Golden State Warriors @warriors

#BigShot to close the quarter 🎯 https://t.co/ODL2FpApNA

LeBron James earned his fourth triple-double of the season.

The Lakers shot 62.8 percent from the field and collectively went 11-of-27 on three-pointers. Los Angeles also bullied the Warriors inside, claiming a 46-30 edge in rebounds and outscoring Golden State by 28 points in the paint.

Notable Performers

LeBron James, SF, Lakers: 22 points (8-13 FG, 2-4 3PT), 11 assists, 10 rebounds

Montrezl Harrell, C, Lakers: 27 points (11-14 FG, 0-1 3PT), five rebounds, three steals, one assist

Stephen Curry, PG, Warriors: 27 points (9-17 FG, 4-7 3PT), three rebounds, three steals, two assists

Andrew Wiggins, SF, Warriors: 15 points (5-9 FG, 3-4 3PT), three rebounds, one assist, one steal, one block

Harrell Provides Energy off Bench

Yahoo Sports’ Chris Haynes reported earlier in the day Anthony Davis might be out for three weeks or more due to his Achilles tendon and calf injuries. This is one of those nights when it’s handy to have the reigning Sixth Man of the Year to compensate for Davis’ continued absence.

Kevon Looney battled foul trouble throughout the game, and Warriors rookie James Wiseman was overmatched when guarding Montrezl Harrell inside. Harrell had 19 points in the first half alone.

NBA Fantasy @NBAFantasy

Montrezl Harrell was feeling it in the 1H with 19 PTS and 27.8 FPTS on ESPN! 🔥 https://t.co/MVhFixtSi1

Mike Trudell @LakersReporter

As banged up as the Lakers are, missing Davis, Gasol and Caruso, they still have considerable firepower off the bench. Kyle Kuzma and Montrezl Harrell are two of the NBA’s most productive subs, and Talen Horton-Tucker continues to impress (8 points thus far).

Nick Friedell @NickFriedell

Points in the paint:

Lakers 36 — Warriors 18

Draymond, Bazemore, Looney and Poole are a combined 0-for-7 for a Warriors team that has 13 turnovers and has allowed the Lakers to shoot 68.6% (24/35) from the field in the first half.

By jumping out to a big lead in the first half, the Lakers didn’t need to ask much of James. That’s a nice luxury to enjoy when the 17-time All-Star has already said he doesn’t intend to take a break the rest of the way.

When he wanted to, LeBron didn’t have much difficulty scoring against Golden State.

Los Angeles Lakers @Lakers

He makes it look so easy. https://t.co/IuBU1yFp38

NBA TV @NBATV

LeBron’s fadeaway 🔥 https://t.co/22Islt05J6

This was a great night for the Lakers all around. In addition to Harrell, Kyle Kuzma (17 points, five rebounds, four assists) and Talen Horton-Tucker (18 points, 10 assists) were instrumental off the bench.

Similar Story Plays Out for Warriors

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. Stephen Curry had a big night but was largely let down offensively by his supporting cast. While this wasn’t one of Curry’s most notable performances of the season, he carried Golden State as much as you could reasonably expect.

The game was at least notable in that the two-time MVP became the Warriors’ all-time leader in assists.

Golden State Warriors @warriors

HISTORY.

Congratulations to @StephenCurry30 on passing Guy Rodgers as the Warriors’ all-time assists leader! https://t.co/doaqKrw1td

Warriors PR @WarriorsPR

With his second assist of the night, Stephen Curry (4,856 career assists) has passed Guy Rodgers (4,855) as the franchise’s all-time assists leader. https://t.co/c6muPbDLLw

Beyond the lack of depth on display, the inability for Draymond Green to positively impact the game at times on offense is glaring.

Tim Kawakami @timkawakami

Yup, when they start Draymond and Looney, they pretty much either need Steph to go nuclear or something solid out of Wiggins and/or Oubre offensively. If that doesn’t happen, things get rough. https://t.co/cQqXsdyT7O

Anthony Slater @anthonyVslater

Warriors record when Draymond Green scores…
-Eight or more points: 8-1
-Five or fewer points: 4-10
He has two tonight, late third.

Broadly speaking, things aren’t going to change this season unless general manager Bob Myers is active before the March 25 trade deadline. And even then, it’s difficult envisioning Myers being able to execute a deal that makes Golden State a genuine title contender.

What’s Next?

The Lakers have a three-game homestand that begins Tuesday against the Minnesota Timberwolves. The Warriors hit the road to play the Houston Rockets on Wednesday.

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