LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (AP) — Anthony Davis had 42 factors and 12 rebounds, and the Los Angeles Lakers clinched the No. 1 seed within the Western Convention playoffs by beating the Utah Jazz 116-108 on Monday night time.
The Lakers (51-15) personal a six-game lead over the second-place Los Angeles Clippers and have 5 seeding video games let earlier than beginning their first playoff run since 2013.
“In the event you’re successful sufficient video games to safe the No. 1 seed, you’re constructing the precise habits which are going to be vital so that you can win within the playoffs,” Lakers coach Frank Vogel stated. “Clearly we’ve got greater aspirations than the No. 1 seed, however we’re happy with the accomplishment and we’ll get pleasure from it whereas we’re on the point of get our group prepared for the playoffs.”
Utah (42-25) has clinched a playoff berth and is fifth within the West, a half-game behind Houston and a half-game forward of Oklahoma Metropolis.
Davis’ closing basket resulted in a 4-point play with 42 seconds left, as he sank a 3-pointer whereas getting fouled by Rudy Gobert and made the following free throw to provide the Lakers a 114-104 lead.
Utah’s Donovan Mitchell answered with a 4-point play of his personal that lower the margin to 114-106 with 36 seconds remaining, however the Jazz couldn’t get any nearer. Davis made two free throws with 5.2 seconds left to wrap up the scoring.
LeBron James scored 22 factors, Dwight Howard had 11 and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope added 10 for the Lakers.
Mitchell scored 33 and Mike Conley had 24 for Utah. Gobert added 16 factors and 13 rebounds for the Jazz.
The Lakers have been coming off a 107-92 loss to Toronto by which Davis shot simply 2 of seven and scored 14 factors. Davis was far more lively Monday proper from the beginning, as he scored 13 factors and shot 6 of 14 within the first quarter alone.
Davis had 24 factors by halftime, marking the 20th time this season he’s scored no less than 20 factors in a half.
“Coach simply advised me to be extra aggressive,” Davis stated. “He felt like, and I felt like too, that I simply form of performed into Toronto’s protection, accepted the double-team. I used to be making the precise performs, however I nonetheless need to be aggressive on the identical time.”
Utah stayed shut and solely trailed 58-56 at halftime as a result of it received its personal stellar begin from Mitchell, who scored 21 factors within the first two durations.
Mitchell then linked on a 3-pointer to cap an 8-Zero run by Utah to open the second half.
However the Jazz received more and more careless with the basketball because the third quarter progressed, enabling the Lakers to grab management of the sport. The Lakers scored 14 straight factors and went on a 19-2 run late within the third quarter.
“Once they flip the stress up, we’ve received to have the ability to execute even higher,” Mitchell stated. “We turned the ball over manner too many instances. They did an excellent job of taking us out of our actions. … We went up six, they turned it up much more and subsequent factor , we’re down 12 or no matter.”
Even after Utah’s Emmanuel Mudiay snapped that run by hitting a 3-pointer on the buzzer, the Jazz nonetheless trailed 86-76 heading into the ultimate interval.
The Lakers stayed in entrance the remainder of the best way.
Lakers: The Lakers made 50% of their field-goal makes an attempt Monday after taking pictures under 40% in every of their first two video games because the restart. “Our shooters haven’t proven up but,” Vogel stated earlier than the sport. “That’s the one factor. We’re enjoying actually good basketball. We’re enjoying extra-pass basketball. We simply had a pair poor taking pictures nights.”
Jazz: Utah was swept by the Lakers within the common season. The Jazz misplaced to the Lakers 95-86 at Los Angeles on Oct. 25 and 121-96 at Utah on Dec. 4. … Utah shot 12 of 43 (27.9%) from 3-point vary Monday and is 28 of 108 (25.9%) from past the arc in three video games at Disney. “We received some attractiveness,” Mitchell stated. “We received what we needed. Generally they don’t fall in. When that occurs, what we do on the defensive finish has to show up much more.”
MAKING A STATEMENT
ESPN cameras confirmed James arrived on the enviornment earlier than the sport carrying a T-shirt with the message 8:46, the period of time prosecutors initially stated a Minneapolis police officer had a knee on George Floyd’s neck earlier than Floyd’s demise on Could 25.
Though prosecutors later stated Derek Chauvin’s knee was really on Floyd’s neck for 7:46, the 8:46 determine has develop into a serious image within the protest motion that adopted Floyd’s demise, with some demonstrations together with durations of silence that final that size of time.
“Nobody deserved to lose their life when it might have been prevented, from what I’ve seen and what the world has seen,” James stated. “That’s what the T-shirt is all about. The world is watching.”
Lakers: Face Oklahoma Metropolis on Wednesday.
Jazz: Face Memphis on Wednesday.
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