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Jalen Brunson scored 29 points and Julius Randle added 27 points and 14 rebounds as the visiting New York Knicks turned improved defense into a 114-109 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers on Monday (Tuesday, December 19, Manila time)
Immanuel Quickley added 20 points and Isaiah Hartenstein had 17 rebounds as the Knicks improved to 2-2 on a five-game road swing while rebounding from a 144-122 loss to the Los Angeles Clippers on Saturday.
LeBron James had a triple-double with 25 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists while Anthony Davis had 32 points and 14 rebounds as the Lakers fell to 1-3 since winning the NBA in-season tournament on December 9 with a victory over the Indiana Pacers.
Austin Reaves scored 20 points for the Lakers, who had Davis, James, D’Angelo Russell and Jarred Vanderbilt all available together for the first time since the tournament title game. Los Angeles raised a downsized tournament championship banner before Monday’s game.
The Knicks used a 15-2 burst to take a 90-80 lead with 30.1 seconds remaining in the third quarter after a Quentin Grimes 3-pointer.
A Brunson trey put the Knicks up 97-90 with 7:58 remaining in the game, and another Brunson basket with 5:47 left gave New York a 101-91 advantage.
The Lakers were within 103-99 with 3:38 remaining after a James dunk, before a 3-pointer from Randle and a floater from Brunson put the Knicks up 108-101 with 2:33 left. Neither team scored again until a James basket inside cut New York’s lead to 108-103 with 1:04 remaining.
Randle delivered a fastbreak layup with 34.1 seconds remaining for a 110-103 lead, and the Knicks sealed the victory with four free throws in the final 25 seconds.
Vanderbilt, who had recently recovered from back spasms, appeared to injure his left foot late in the third quarter. He had two rebounds and one assist for the Lakers in 14 minutes.
The Knicks scored nine points in the final 1:21 of the first quarter to take a 35-27 lead. The Lakers scored eight points in the final 1:07 of the second to lead 58-57 at the half. Randle had 16 points before halftime for the Knicks. – Rappler.com