(Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE/Getty Images)
Lakers rout Wizards, tie best start in franchise history
LOS ANGELES – Thankful for being back home.
In what was an absolute drubbing, the Lakers showed no negative effects of spending Thanksgiving Day in L.A. and dismantled the Wizards to extend their winning streak to 10.
The game had the added benefit of allowing the team’s starters to get plenty of rest, with L.A. crossing the 100-point mark with 2:42 in the third quarter and heading into the fourth up by 26.
What happened up to that point was utter dominance on both ends of the floor, as Frank Vogel’s squad overwhelmed one of the league’s best offenses and showed off on the opposite basket led by Anthony Davis, LeBron James, and the cavalry of shooters.
All it took was a quick timeout.
With the Wizards jumping to a quick 15-4 lead, Vogel’s stoppage allowed the purple and gold to settle down and get back on their horse. What came next was a 29-4 run, capped by a Rajon Rondo layup – turning that that 11-point deficit into a 14-point lead.
That explosion also included plenty of participation from AD:
Davis scored 15 of his 26 in the opening stanza and was equally impressive on the defensive end, with 3 blocks and contributions that usually ignited the transition game.
The former Pelican added 13 rebounds in just 27 minutes.
James, who like AD was a spectator during the fourth quarter, played even less (25 minutes) but just as lethal.“Those guys need rest,” JaVale McGee said. “Those guys are playing 30, 40 minutes a game and playing their (butts) off too. As a team we all have to back them up and make sure that they don’t have to play 35 minutes every game.”
The King shot 4-for-8 from long range en route to his 23 points and dished 11 assists to keep the party going.
And quite a party it was, with the team at one point opening up a 39-point lead. The Lakers shot lights out from deep (14-for-32) with four different players with at least three makes (Danny Green, Quinn Cook and Rondo besides James).
They also had a third double-double (McGee with 15 points and 11 boards) and a total of six different players scoring in double digits.
Defensively, the Lakers held Bradley Beal to 18 points (11 below his season average) and kept the Wizards below the 40% mark for the night.
With the win, the Lakers (17-2, best in the NBA and tying the best start in franchise history) finished November with a 14-1 record, its highest single-month win total since March of 2000 (15-1). The 10-game winning streak is also the first one in double digits since winning 11 straight during the 2009-10 season (11/17/09-12/11/09).
“Every win matters this time of the year,” Vogel said.
L.A.’s next 5 opponents are all above .500, but judging by Friday night’s performance, they’re more than ready for the challenge.
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