The first matchup between LeBron James and Zion Williamson lived up to the hype, as they both carried their respective teams to the finish line. However, there could only be one winner, and once again, it was the Los Angeles Lakers who came out on top over the New Orleans Pelicans, this time by a margin of 118-109. The Lakers are now 3-0 against the Pelicans this season.
Williamson might just be a 19-year-old rookie, but he got the superstar treatment from James on Tuesday, which is to say he got everything James had offensively. In 34:12, James tallied a season-high 40 points, including 16 points in the third quarter, to go along with 8 rebounds and 6 assists. The Lakers are 38-0 when James scores at least 30 points this season.
It didn’t hurt that James was being guarded by the smaller Jrue Holiday for the majority of the game, but it was clear James had an extra pep in his step, almost as if he trying to tell Williamson, “You have may have next, young man, but I still have now.” It was really cool to see.
Anthony Davis also had another big night against his former team, posting a 21-point, 14-rebound double-double. He also blocked six shots, which shouldn’t come as a surprise considering the Pelicans’ starting center is 6’9”. However, Davis had far from a perfect game, as his 21 points came in 21 attempts. Additionally, James had trouble taking care of the ball and ended the night with more turnovers (7) than assists (6).
Tuesday’s game just goes to show that ugly wins can be fun, too.
That being said, the game would have been a lot closer if the Lakers didn’t have Alex Caruso to clean things up — and no, that’s not a joke. As usual, Caruso was the defensive spark off the bench for the Lakers, but he also had some success making plays, dishing out a team-high 8 assists. He also ended the night a game-high +20 in the box score.
Frank Vogel says Alex Caruso "gets a game ball tonight" for his highlight plays that energized the team.— Harrison Faigen (@hmfaigen) February 26, 2020
Comparatively, Rajon Rondo was a -17 in a game the Lakers won by 9.
Makes you think!