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Player Grades: Lakers vs. Blazers

Assessing every Lakers player’s performance from the team’s 134-110 win vs. the Blazers

NBA: Portland Trail Blazers at Los Angeles Lakers Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

After Friday’s game, about the only way to sucker me back into enjoying this team again was D’Angelo Russell going bonkers in the very next game.

Well, I’ll be damned.

Like a number of Lakers fans, I have a soft spot for D’Lo for once being the face of the rebuild. A whole lot has transpired since then, but it’ll never get old to see D’Lo with LeBron James and Anthony Davis have a night like this.

And the fact that those days could be very numbered as the trade deadline approaches makes it even more fun. Enough of the nostalgia trip.

Let’s grade the win. As always, grades are based on expectations for each player. A “B” grade represents the average performance for that player.

Rui Hachimura

23 minutes, 9 points, 2 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 steal, 2-7 FG, 1-3 3PT, 4-5 FT, +15

It’s been a rough couple of games for Rui. At least he got in the scoring column on Sunday, but it hasn’t been quite the seamless return from injury this time around. I like the lineup on paper, but if Taurean Prince is healthy, he’ll probably slot back into the starters over Rui.

Grade: D+

LeBron James

31 minutes, 28 points, 5 rebounds, 5 assists, 8-16 FG, 3-8 3PT, 9-10 FT, +28

Part of what makes nights like Friday so frustrating when watching LeBron is nights like Sunday. Again, I don’t expect him to bring a high level of energy each night but what a stark contrast the last two nights were.

It feels like it’s feast or famine at times with LeBron. Just finding a nice little middle ground would work. I’m not too picky.

Grade: A-

Anthony Davis

26 minutes, 14 points, 14 rebounds, 3 assists, 4-7 FG, 0-1 3PT, 6-6 FT, +3

Tonight is just the fourth time this season AD has played fewer than 27 minutes. It was very awesome for him not to come back into the game after checking out in the third.

The Lakers have really had him carry them for large chunks of this season. Seeing LeBron and, more specifically, D’Lo carry that load on a night when you would hope to have your stars rest is a luxury the Lakers have not had the last two seasons. More of that, please.

Grade: B

Austin Reaves

26 minutes, 15 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 steal, 5-10 FG, 3-4 3PT, 2-2 FT, +4

Lost a bit in the excitement of the night is Austin hitting three of his four 3-pointers! The last time he hit three 3-pointers in a game was Dec. 18 against the Knicks. That was more dire than I expected.

Hopefully, this is Reaves breaking out of a rut. He certainly was aggressive and that was very nice to see.

Grade: B+

D’Angelo Russell

34 minutes, 34 points, 1 rebound, 8 assists, 14-21 FG, 6-11 3PT, +29

What a night.

It’s a vintage D’Lo night where he catches fire and goes bonkers. We’ve seen it before but not this season. They’re always a blast to see. This time around, he added some alley-oops and behind-the-back trickery as well.

Really, it was just a blast to see.

Grade: A+

Jarred Vanderbilt

21 minutes, 4 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals, 2-3 FG, +8

I was really surprised that he didn’t start because it felt like a layup to go back to last year’s starting lineup. The Lakers won, so alas, but still a surprise.

Vando is such a fun player when he’s healthy and flying around. And he was flying around, both good and bad, on Sunday. His fingerprints are often all over a game when he’s at his best, and most of it doesn’t show up in a box score.

Grade: B

Max Christie

22 minutes, 4 points, 1 rebound, 2 assists, 1-7 FG, 0-3 3PT, 2-2 FT, -1

I’ve done a couple flips on Max this season. Coming into the year off his Summer League, I was intrigued. But he was struggling for a while and I was starting to lose faith. It was about that point he turned it around and proved he should be in the rotation, no matter who is healthy and available.

I say all that to make the point that tonight might have been his worst game as a Laker. That was really bad. The series of turnovers playing against the zone was bizarre. Forget that game and move on.

Grade: F

Cam Reddish

21 minutes, 10 points, 4 rebounds, 1 assist, 2 steals, 5-8 FG, 0-2 3PT, +10

Cam off the bench is a lot more tolerable than Cam as a starter. It inherently limits his minutes and lets him play against, admittedly, lesser competition that puts him in a better position to succeed.

Particularly defensively, Cam can have a bit more freedom to gamble and extend 94 feet. There’s something intriguing defensively about Cam and Vando defensively off the bench. It’s a trainwreck offensively but it could be fun defensively.

Grade: B+

Christian Wood

18 minutes, 4 points, 6 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals, 3 blocks, 2-3 FG, 0-1 3PT, +20

Did Christian Wood just come kind of weirdly close to a 5x5? What he did do was something he has hardly ever done in his career.

Tonight was just the third time in his career he’s recorded three blocks, two steals and two assists. In the other two occasions, he played twice as many minutes as the 18 he did tonight.

He’s doing a lot of the little things to contribute to winning and I’m not sure he’s ever consistently done that in his career.

Grade: A-

Jalen Hood-Schifino, Jaxson Hayes, Colin Castleton, Maxwell Lewis

A host of Lakers played in garbage time. I’m not grading any of them, just acknowledging them. Really, there wasn’t anything noteworthy from any of them.

Monday’s inactives: Skylar Mays, Dylan Windler, Taurean Prince, Gabe Vincent

You can follow Jacob on Twitter at @JacobRude.

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