(Garrett Ellwood/NBA E)

Lakers 83, Clippers 72: Running Diary from Vegas

The Lakers defeated the Clippers 83-72 behind a strong fourth quarter in which they outscored LAC 21-10. Below is a summary of the action:

8:03: The Lakers jumped out to a 6-0 lead with buckets from Nate Pierre-Louis, Scotty Pippen Jr. and Pierre-Louis again. LAL was hitting the offensive glass early, with starting center Sacha Killeya-Jones (in again for Jay Huff, who remained in health and safety protocols) grabbing two on one possession.

4:21: The Clippers found an early answer, however, and outscored the Lakers 17-3 over the next four minutes to take an eight-point lead. Pippen Jr. trimmed into the margin at the foul line, continuing perhaps his best skill at Vanderbilt, as he hit three of four freebies.

0:35.0: L.A. have had some good continuity off the bench in Vegas and in San Francisco last week, anchored by South Bay Lakers Mason Jones and Paris Bass, who each scored a bucket in the final two minutes of the quarter to keep the Clippers within reach, at 27-19.

5:49: Cole Swider, who came into this game shooting 53.3 percent from three, making 4.0 per game on 7.5 attempts, hit his first triple of the evening to trim LAC’s lead to three at 33-30.

4:49: The Clippers responded once again, however, with an 11-1 push that included a pair of three-pointers, enough to make it 41-32. The Lakers would cut into that margin ahead of the half.

0:00: Max Christie hit a three to beat the first half buzzer, after starting the game 0 for 5, to trim the margin to 46-43. Christie continued the strong defense that’s already a staple of his game, as he still adjusts offensively to bigger, faster opponents, which will of course go up another level as he sees NBA players in the regular season.

9:00: Just as they started the game on a 6-0 run, LAL matched it to open the third quarter, allowing a 49-46 lead as Christie hit a contested layup.

3:17: Javante McCoy has impressed with his scoring ability throughout the summer, which he showcased while hitting his fourth shot in six attempts, to reach eight bench points, to tie the game at 57.

0:00: A strong bench effort from the Lakers continued through the end of the period, with Paris Bass and, especially, Jones making an impact. Jones led the Lakers in scoring (11), rebounding (seven) and assists (three, tied with Pippen Jr), with Bass reaching seven points on top of McCoy’s eight. That helped the Lakers go into the fourth quarter at 62-all, despite a slow shooting night from the starters (14 for 34) to that point.

5:50: L.A. picked things up defensively early in the fourth quarter, holding the Clippers to just three points in the first four minutes. They weren’t much better offensively, managing six points, but that delivered a 68-65 lead nonetheless. After LAC managed one free throw, Swider responded with his second triple of the night to put LAL up five.

4:51: After yet another stop, Swider found Jones on a backdoor cut for a layup that gave the Lakers their biggest lead of the evening. Jones was up to 13 points, and it was Swider’s third assist. The Clippers got a transition layup, their first field goal in several minutes, but Pippen Jr. answered with his first triple to make it 76-68.

2:00: The Clippers finally got something going on the offensive end, scoring on back-to-back possessions to cut LAL’s lead in half, putting some pressure on the Purple and Gold.

0:59.0: Max Christie hit the biggest shot of the game, a 3-pointer coming out of a time out to put the Lakers up 79-72 with 1:41 to play. After a stop, McCoy, continued his strong night with a tough floater to make it 81-72 with 59 seconds left. LAL would add a pair of free throws to emerge with an 11-point victory.Jones finished with 15 points and 10 boards, McCoy 14 points, and Christie eight points to lead the way.