For the third time in four games, the Lakers came away with a victory on Friday, knocking off the Portland Trailblazers 107-95. At times, it was frustrating and featured a lot of the same faults that have plagued this team this year, but it also featured the team leading by double digits for long portions of the night and ultimately winning fairly comfortably.
Let’s grade the win. Grades are based on expectations for each player. A “B” grade represents the average performance for that player.
31 minutes, 8 points, 2 rebounds, 3 steals, 1 assist, 1 block, 2-4 FG, 1-2 3PT, 3-4 FT, +1
Multiple times in this game, Cam Reddish had an absurd steal based almost entirely off anticipating where the player was going. It’s an uncanny skill he has that is legitimately a skill that he has shown multiple times.
Outside of that, a fairly ho-hum game for Cam.
35 minutes, 35 points, 9 assists, 5 rebounds, 2 steals, 13-22 FG, 5-9 3PT, 4-6 FT, +18
Can you have a performance where you turn back the clock when it doesn’t feel like the clock is moving forward? LeBron had a classic LeBron performance, particularly shooting the 3-pointer.
By going 5-9 from range on Friday, he’s now shooting 27-68 from range, good for a 39.7% clip. That’s a very welcome sight, especially after last season.
35 minutes, 16 points, 14 rebounds, 5 blocks, 3 steals, 2 assists, 8-19 FG, 0-1 3PT, 0-1 FT, +1
Davis still pretty clearly isn’t 100%, but he also found ways to be a lot more effective on Friday. He had a double-double, deterred shots at the rim and was generally more effective.
He also was in foul trouble and led the team in turnovers while shooting 42.1% on the night. You take the good with the bad with him on a night like this.
35 minutes, 10 points, 3 assists, 2 steals, 1 rebound, 3-7 FG, 1-5 3PT, 3-3 FT, +10
It never really feels like Taurean Prince has a loud bad game, which is a good trait. But it sure would be nice if he started having more outwardly good games.
He continues to struggle shooting 3-pointers. He does enough to remain a positive, but just imagine if he’d start shooting at that 40% rate he promised.
29 minutes, 14 points, 6 assists, 3 rebounds, 5-10 FG, 4-7 3PT, 0-1 FT, +2
Russell again set a really nice tone early on this game, scoring 11 of his 14 points in the first half. He continues to find ways to be effective outside of his scoring, though, as evidenced by his passing.
His 6.6 assists are the third-most in his career despite usage rate being down. He’s fitting in well in this lineup, which could lead to his tenure in LA being longer than some expected.
28 minutes, 7 points, 5 rebounds, 2 assists, 3-5 FG, 1-2 3PT, +9
Not a great Rui game, but not a bad one. He was on the receiving end of a couple of LeBron assists during a decisive second-half run. After going 1-2 from range on Friday, Rui’s 3-point percentage is a staggering 50%.
20 minutes, 10 points, 10 rebounds, 5-9 FG, 0-3 3PT, +5
After a handful of bad performances off the bench, Christian Wood had a strong game on Friday. He did a great job of finishing around the rim and getting putbacks.
He still remains a truly great defensive rebounder and that alone keeps him valuable.
18 minutes, 7 points, 4 assists, 2 rebounds, 1-4 FG, 0-1 3PT, 5-6 FT, +10
For a second straight game, Reaves struggled with turnovers and was relatively ineffective. Finishing with a +10 doesn’t really tell the whole story of this one.
Tonight was the least Austin Reaves has played for the Lakers since he was limited to 6:50 in his first game back from a hamstring injury on Feb. 7. He played 17:59 off the bench tonight, finished with 7 points/4 assists.— Dan Woike (Click the pic ⬇️ to read) (@DanWoikeSports) November 18, 2023
Right now, it’s just a pair of bad games back-to-back. But it is worth noting, for now.
8 minutes, 1 rebound, 1 steal, +4
A relative non-factor in this one. Again, it amazes me someone so tall and athletic as him can manage one rebound in a game.
Max Christie/Maxwell Lewis
Neither played enough to warrant a grade.
There’s an underrated aspect of coaching is pushing the right buttons in a game when reliable figures don’t perform. Ham did a good job of that, but his job is made easier when LeBron goes supernova.
Friday’s inactive: Jalen Hood-Schifino, Jarred Vanderbilt, Gabe Vincent, Colin Castleton. D’Moi Hodge, Alex Fudge
You can follow Jacob on Twitter at @JacobRude.