LeBron James had the 99th triple-double in his career to lead LA Lakers on route 137-121 Minnesota Timberwolves on Tuesday night. The 17-time All-Star scored 25 points, 12 rebounds and 12 assists in a win that extended to a string of defending champions to three.
It was a complete performance from the LA Lakers, as almost every player scored a point. After James sat in the third quarter with a 4:35 lag and tied the score 87-87, the LA Lakers jumped 15-7. Talen Horton-Tucker and Kyle Kuzma led the attack that brought the home team to a 102-94 lead at the end of the quarter.
Horton-Tucker wore the LA Lakers in the final five minutes of the third and the first two minutes of the fourth. He scored seven points during that period, including a three-point game that increased Purple and Gold’s lead to 11, one of which they never gave up.
In that sense, let’s look at five hits and failures in the game:
Hit: LeBron James (LA Lakers)
LeBron James included his teammates in the first half. Throwing out just three shots before half-time, the four-time MVP set the stage for other LA Lakers players to have an offensive impact.
In a crucial third period, James was more aggressive in his search for shots as he was constantly looking for an open man.
The four-time MVP is just one triple-double to 100, a feat previously accomplished by four other players in NBA history: Oscar Robertson (181), Russell Westbrook (157), Magic Johnson (138) and Jason Kidd (107).
By the fourth quarter, his duel with Montrezl Harrell on three consecutive possessions put the game out of the Minnesota Timberwolves ’reach.
Flop: (Minnesota Timberwolves)
It’s hard to call Karl-Anthony Towns a flop in this game after scoring 29 points, six rebounds and seven assists. But almost as soon as he entered the game with the ball in the fourth quarter, Harrell reached the basket several times. More than his overall game, a series of erroneous errors at the defensive end was what doomed the Minnesota Timberwolves.
In defense, the Minnesota Timberwolves allowed the LA Lakers to shoot 57.5% off the field and 50% off the field. While it wasn’t entirely Towns ’fault, the player is to blame for allowing the LA Lakers light kicks from within.
Hit: Anthony Edwards (Minnesota Timberwolves)
One of the best candidates for the Rookie of the Year award, Anthony Edwards, did not disappoint in this game. He came out early shooting and made half of the shots he tried on the way to a 29-point relegation and 4 rebounds.
The 6 ‘4 “keeper’s athletic ability and dexterity to get on the line were fully demonstrated. He found stitches in the LA Lakers’ defense resulting in either a bucket or a free throw attempt for the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Despite the fact that he was embarrassed early in the fourth quarter before making a few shots to finish, this was a very good performance by Edwards that would boost his case for the freshman award.
Flop: Jake Layman (Minnesota Timberwolves)
You have to pity Jake Layman because he was given the unfair task of guarding the future Hall of Fame. He’s not exactly a shooter, so anything else he could contribute would be a bonus.
The layman had a great sequence where he blocked LeBron James, to which very few players can claim.
But that awkward game ignited James, who later rejected Layman’s attempt. The fired LA Lakers striker will not be stopped after that. and all of Layman’s efforts failed.
Hit: Montrezl Harrell (LA Lakers)
Montrezl Harrell led the LA Lakers in scoring for the second consecutive game. The LA Lakers reserve player was unstoppable under the basket and was strikingly active from the moment he was thrown into the game.
The one-minute sequence between him and James contained the dominance of the LA Lakers in this game. When he entered the fight, no Minnesota Timberwolves player could remove him. He quickly got to his feet avoiding any defender who came to mark him.
Overall, Montresl Harrell scored 25 points, four rebounds and six assists during the night.
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