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LeBron James and ‘embarrassing’ refs: Latest installment of NBA’s most famous rivalry-All you need to Know…

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The NBA’s most famous rivalry had another epic instalment, and it had a bit of everything — from clutch shooting, to controversial officiating, and huge performances from the superstars involved.
LeBron James led the way for the Los Angeles Lakers, hitting the go-ahead jumper as his team picked up the 114-112 win over the Boston Celtics.

The game had it all. Celtics legend Bill Russell donned a Kobe Bryant jersey in the crowd — honouring the late Lakers legend — celebrities packed out Staples Center, and some of the NBA’s best players put on a show.

Lesbron James and steven Curry

James finished with 29 points, eight rebounds, and nine assists in the win, which put the Lakers at 43-12 on the season.

Anthony Davis led the Lakers’ scoring effort with 32 points, to go with 13 rebounds, while Rajon Rondo came off the bench for four points, five assists, and five steals.

Jayson Tatum had one of the best games of his young career, leading a Kemba Walker-less Celtics with an efficient 41 points, hitting four of his seven three-point attempts, while going 13-of-15 from the free throw line.

Lesbron James net

Jaylen Brown finished with 20 points for the Celtics, who moved to 39-17 on the season.

With less than 40 seconds remaining, James missed the back-end of a pair of free throws to cut the Lakers’ deficit to 111-110, but the rebound battle led to the ball going out of bounds, with the officials concluding that the ball was off a Celtics player.

The Lakers retained possession, and James would hit a turnaround jumper over Brown to give the home team a 111-110 lead.

The Celtics brought it down the floor, but Jayson Tatum fumbled the ball out of bounds. The 21-year-old thought he was fouled on the play, and so did his head coach Brad Stevens, who picked up a technical foul for arguing with the officials.

Though Anthony Davis missed the technical free throw, he went on to hit his pair after being intentionally fouled on the ensuing possession, putting the Lakers up 113-110.

Grant Williams hit a pair from the charity stripe to cut the Celtics’ deficit to just one point, before David split his next pair, giving Stevens’ team the chance to tie or win the game.

The ball went to Tatum in the corner, but he extended his arm and committed an offensive foul, effectively sealing the win for the Lakers.

Lakers News: LeBron James Discusses Defensive Ceiling During 2019-20 NBA Season

Lesbron James defend

Teams historically have had sloppy showings in the first game back after the NBA All-Star break and that was the case for the Los Angeles Lakers as they endured some rough stretches to earn a win over the Memphis Grizzlies.

LeBron James and Anthony Davis once again led the Lakers as the All-Star duo combined for 60 of the team’s 117 points and imposing their will on the Grizzlies in the fourth quarter. Memphis had no answers for the team’s one-two punch as they took turns attacking and scoring the basketball.

Despite several lapses in the second half that allowed the Grizzlies to come back, the Lakers still showed flashes of their defensive brilliance and after the game, James talked about their ceiling on that end of the floor.

Lesbron James

“We’ve been close to it. We’ve had great stretches. More great than not, but we’re getting back to it. We understand that every team that we play gon’ play great basketball versus us. They look forward to that match up and it’s up to use to try take teams out of what they do well,” James said.

Lesbron James

“So to have Avery, and JaVale and AD and the rest of us just doing our job defensively being sound, being in turn with the game plan is really good for us.”

After starting the 2019-20 NBA season effectively on the defensive end, Los Angeles saw some slippage prior to the break that raised some concerns, but they tapped into their potential against Memphis. There was a particular stretch during the second quarter that had fans at Staples Center on their feet as they quickly rotated and closed out on the Grizzlies shooters and packed the paint to prevent any easy buckets.

Lesbron James dunk

The team’s defense also ignited several fastbreak opportunities that allowed them to build their lead up, an encouraging sign for a team that can sometimes struggle to score in the halfcourt. While Memphis did manage to battle back and make it an interesting game, Los Angeles ultimately proved to be too much and reminded everyone how dangerous they can be when they are locked in.

The win is a solid way to kick off the remainder of the season, but there are still questions regarding the roster as the purple and gold have been linked to several players who can potentially help during their 2020 NBA playoff run. It will be interesting to see what changes — if any — are made between now and the end of the season.

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