Frank Vogel announced another starting lineup on Tuesday, this time LeBron James and Anthony Davis started 4 and 5 alongside Russell Westbrook, Avery Bradley and Tallinn Horton Tucker. It’s no surprise that this lineup didn’t exactly give the Celtics problems, but in the end it didn’t matter because of how much control James had.
With three days of rest under his belt, James fueled the Celtics with 30 points, 18 of which he scored in the first half, 4 rebounds and 5 assists. James’ contributions were particularly important in the first half because Anthony Davis was slow to progress.
Fortunately, Davis looked much better in the second half: not content with jumping and defending, he was as energetic as he had been all season. Davis’ energy was clearly contagious, as the Lakers snapped on the defensive end in the third quarter, unlocking the best of Westbrook on both ends of the floor — and when the Big Three are involved, the Lakers are a tough team to beat.
Davis wasn’t the only one to bounce back in the second half. Tallinn Horton Tucker seemed more comfortable handling the start after an awkward first half. Horton Tucker will always have some value to the team because of his defence, but in order to justify his place in the starting line-up, he must be engaged – and effective – on both ends of the floor. Tuesday was a great move
The Lakers will jump on a plane to Memphis on Wednesday to face the Grizzlies in the first game of their way back. The Grizzlies are in the midst of a five-game winning streak without Ja Morant, so we hope it’s fun.
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