The Rundown: LeBron leads way as Lakers beat Kings

Published January 8, 2023, 3:00 PMMiguel Flores

LeBron James scored 37 points in the Lakers’ thrilling victory over the Kings.


Celtics 121, Spurs 116

Bulls 126, Jazz 118

Mavericks 127, Pelicans 117

Magic 115, Warriors 101

What went down

From cow bells to conspiracy theories, the Lakers-Kings rivalry has featured plenty of spice. Today, Los Angeles refused to be beamed up for the third time this season as they eked out a win at Sacramento.

In a close game that featured plenty of offense, De’Aaron Fox dropped 17 of his 34 points in the fourth quarter to rally the Kings from eight points down. He eventually tied the game with this bucket with six seconds left.

But the Lakers caught a break in the following possession with Dennis Schröeder driving to the rim and drawing a foul from Fox. He drilled two free throws and the Kings, left without a timeout, watched a last-ditch 3-point shot from Fox clank off the rim.

This was the Lakers’ fifth straight win, an encouraging development after losing Anthony Davis to a calf injury two weeks ago. Davis is still far from returning to the court, but the Lakers have found a strain of chemistry in his absence.

Today, LeBron James led the way with 37 points, eight rebounds, and seven assists. But three other Lakers stepped up and filled the void in Thomas Bryant (29 points, 14 rebounds), Dennis Schröeder (27 points), and Russell Westbrook (23 points, 16 assists) providing much needed offensive juice.

The Lakers are now 19-21, just 1.5 games behind the LA Clippers for the sixth seed. There are, however, six teams within two games or less of each other for the fifth and sixth seeds. The Western Conference is going to be wild.

Big-time baller

This line is going to look mediocre compared to some of the games he’s had over the last few weeks, but Luka Doncic had another incredible game to pad his MVP case.

Doncic dropped 34 points, 10 rebounds, and 10 assists on the New Orleans Pelicans, pulling the Mavs to within a game of the Pelicans for the third seed in the West.

Luka has led Dallas to an 8-2 record in their last 10 games. If he can keep this going, he has the best chance at dethroning Nikola Jokic.

What he said

Millennials will appreciate Giannis Antetokounmpo’s meme acumen. Yesterday when asked about the Milwaukee Bucks’ recent struggles, the Greek Freak referenced an iconic SpongeBob SquarePants scene.

Did you see that?

Ivica Zubac has been having a solid season for the Clippers. Yesterday, however, he got lost right in the middle of the court.