Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins were unstoppable Sunday evening in Los Angeles, but D’Angelo Russell stole their moment in a 110-109 Lakers victory. Russell’s game-winner bounced in as the buzzer sounded, ricocheting up into the sky before finding its home through the bottom of the hoop.
Sure, the Phoenix Suns won and a Lakers loss would have made it an interesting final few games, but D’Angelo’s shot was more than a win. Russell revealed after the game that his grandmother passed away Sunday morning, telling the great Mike Trudell why he was so emotional after.
Russell ran into the crowed and embraced family, and in that moment, it’s more than a game. Good for you, D’Angelo. That game-winner was simply meant to be, and it’s hard to think about the tank when that moment meant so much more.
Ricky Rubio was held scoreless until the final three minutes of the game, the Lakers flipping the script after allowing him to score a career-high last time around. Wiggins (41) and Towns (40), however, combined for 81 points. The duo was on fire, but they couldn’t stop the will of Russell.
Russell finished the night with 16 points and four assists on a night he initially didn’t think he would be able to play after the devastating news. Jordan Clarkson added in 17, leading the starters who all reached double-digits, and Tyler Ennis put in a team-high 20 points.
It was a strange game, but it remained competitive throughout. Once Russell hit the game-winner and explained why it was such a big moment for him, it changed the complexity of things immediately.
Where amazing happens indeed.