Anthony Davis #3 of the Los Angeles Lakers shoots the ball during the game against the Detroit Pistons on November 21, 2021 at Little Caesars Arena in Detroit, Michigan.
Anthony Davis #3 of the Los Angeles Lakers shoots the ball during the game against the Detroit Pistons on November 21, 2021 at Little Caesars Arena in Detroit, Michigan.
Chris Schwegler

AD and Russ Jumpstart Team in Motor City for Fourth-Quarter Comeback

by Taylor Geas

The Lakers still can’t find their keys to success on defense. But ironically, it was the defense that secured their 121-116 win over the Detroit Pistons tonight — defense from Anthony Davis (30 pts, 10 reb, 6 ast, 5 blk).

This game looked like a grim one, in more ways than one. After two road losses, tonight’s match looked like it was going in that direction. The Lakers gave away 21 points on turnovers and found it difficult to defend the perimeter, especially Jeremy Grant (36 pts) who went 5-for-9 from three.

On the year, Los Angeles is –92 when entering the third quarter. And the third is where things got especially dicey this Sunday. The game was tight in the first and second, Detroit broke away in the third. Down by 12, LeBron James (10 pts, 5 ast) got tangled up with Isiah Stewart and clipped him with a bow to the eyebrow. The elbow looked inadvertent, but Isiah confronted Bron and had to be restrained (in every sense of the word). Luckily, a larger altercation didn’t break out as both teams kept their composure amid the tussle.

LeBron received a flagrant two and was ejected for the second time in his 19-year career. His teammates responded to the situation and fought back in the fourth quarter. They fought back from a 17-point deficit and grabbed the lead with two minutes left in the game. Davis said postgame, “Everybody's level raised when LB went out.”

The Lakers went up by five points in the final moments thanks to AD. He had two blocks on Cade Cunningham (13 pts, 12 reb, 10 ast) followed by a reverse layup on the other end. But Davis credits the comeback to Russell Westbrook’s (26 pts, 10 ast, 9 reb) energy, specifically, “That dunk. That dunk just got us going, it sparked us.”

Russ brought the energy while the big fella brought the vision. And Carmelo Anthony (18 pts) brought the triple threat. This is the sixth time this season Melo has made five triples.

It should be said again, AD was a defensive anchor for this inconsistent Lakers defense. He led the team in rebounds. In total, the Lakers had 51 to the Pistons’ 39. And as for Westbrook, No. 0 scored 15 points in the fourth quarter alone. “Part of my job, part of what I'm supposed to do is be aggressive,” he said in his walk-off interview.

On the road again, the Lake Show will air Tuesday at the Garden versus the Knicks.

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