LOS ANGELES – In the soaring Los Angeles Lakers 122-112 triumph over the Toronto Raptors on Friday night, D’Angelo Russell had 28 pts, as well as nine assists in his versatile, come back from a six-game injury nonappearance, and Dennis Schröder did add 23 points as well as seven assists.
Austin Reaves garnered 18 points, all whilst Rui Hachimura as well as Jarrett Vanderbilt each added 16 as the Lakers managed to win for the seventh time in nine games, despite Anthony Davis’s absence.
Whilst struggling against Toronto’s defense, the superstar big man had only eight points as well as nine rebounds, but Russell and the Lakers’ reserves took control before Davis sealed the win with his sole field goal of the second half with 46 seconds remaining.
“The fact that we’ve been able to come ahead with this win against an extremely good team while only allowing eight points to (Davis) is a sign of growth,” Lakers coach Darvin Ham stated. “That demonstrates just how profound and talented we are.”
Russell was the focal point of the Lakers’ exercise at the trade deadline, but he only played four games in his first stint in L.A. before rupturing his right ankle. He came back to the starting lineup with a bounce in his step, striking five 3-pointers and making as well as celebrating a series of difficult plays that got the Lakers’ home crowd roaring.
“I have learned from prior jaunts: the fans are ready to erupt at some point Russell said. “I just wanted to pass on that energy to them… It shouldn’t go overlooked, because our fans are the ones who first put a battery in someone else’s back who has some impetus, so why not do the right thing, bring that positivity, and acknowledge what our fans have to offer?”
With a win over Memphis three days ago, the Lakers managed to move into 9th position in the Western Conference, and they are achieving success despite LeBron James’ prolonged absence. Russell and Schröder led an outstanding effort as the Lakers won their sixth game in eight since the All-Star break. LA also did 19 for 19 for free throws.
For the Raptors, who had won seven consecutive road games against the Lakers since 2014, Scottie Barnes managed to score 20 of his career-high 32 points during the second half, and O.G. Anunoby made his first 11 shots while scoring 31 points.
Anunoby attributed the Raptors’ fourth-quarter struggles to “them feeling comfortable, them obtaining stops as well as playing with assurance. They hit shots, and the situation simply continued.”
Despite large spells of strong play, Toronto went 1-4 on a 5-game road trip that culminated in consecutive losses in Los Angeles.
“You can play bad hoops and win every game,” Anunoby explained. “You just seek out the positive aspects from the losses and apply them to the next game.”
Russell had 12 points as well as seven helps in the first half as the Lakers overcame an early 15-point shortfall in a game that featured several wild momentum shifts. After making just 4 field goals in the third quarter, the Lakers went on a 26-8 run to take a nine-point advantage half – way through the fourth. See Standings