The Clippers defeated the Lakers for the eighth consecutive time, hoping that Kawhi Leonard’s recovery from a ruptured knee ligament will propel them to their first NBA championship. The Clippers have defeated the Lakers eight times in a row.
In his debut game with the Clippers, both Paul George and John Wall scored 15 points.
Leonard said playing on a full-strength Clippers team as “fantastic.” “As you can see, tonight everyone is contributing on both the defensive and offensive ends.”
That’s a tremendous amount of broadcast time, @lonniewalker 4 pic.twitter.com/wF177YCU3w
— Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) October 21, 2022
Leonard, who won championships with the San Antonio Spurs and Toronto Raptors, came off the bench and plays 21 minutes for the first time since 2013.
Leonard stated that coming off the bench was not a difficult adjustment for him.
Leonard, who entered the game with six minutes remaining in the second quarter and instantly drained two shots, stated, “I pretty much stick to the same routine, keep my focus, and remind myself it’s something that will assist in the long term.”
The loss was the Lakers’ second in a row to start the season, but coach Darvin Ham praised the effort from LeBron James, Anthony Davis, and company.
James finished the game with 20 points and 10 rebounds, while Davis scored 25 points with eight rebounds despite injuring his back in a third-quarter fall.
Davis concurred with Ham’s assessment that the Lakers were “going in the right direction,” stating, “We had a no-quit mentality.”
Davis stated, “Our competitive spirit was present.” “We did an excellent job defending against all of their players. Simply put, we must do a better job of making shots.”
Russell Westbrook endured yet another nightmare performance, scoring only two points on free throws while shooting 0-for-11 from the floor.
In the third quarter, the Clippers held a 15-point advantage after a 17-0 scoring outburst.
The Lakers fought back and established a two-point lead in the fourth quarter before the Clippers began to pull away once more.
James stated that it was a marked improvement over the Lakers’ season-opening loss to the Golden State Warriors.
James remarked, “We played correctly.” “I believe we made another advance today.”
Bucks hold off 76ers
Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks opened their NBA season with a 90-88 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers despite a fourth-quarter push by the 76ers.
Antetokounmpo, a two-time NBA Most Valuable Player who led the Bucks to the 2021 championship, came close to a triple-double with 21 points, 18 rebounds, and eight assists as the Bucks handed the Sixers their second loss of the young season.
James Harden scored 16 of his 31 points in the fourth quarter to help lead the Philadelphia 76ers to an 86-84 lead with less than two minutes remaining.
It was their first lead since the game’s opening basket, but they were unable to capitalize on it.
Giannis nearly recorded a triple-double to open the season.
21 Points, 13 Rebounds, 8 Assists, 3 Blocks, 1 Steal.
October 21, 2022 — Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks)
The three-pointer made by Wesley Matthews with 23.8 seconds remaining gave Milwaukee the lead, 89-88, with 25.7 seconds remaining.
With four seconds remaining, Harden drove from the left and turned to the basket, but he was unable to score, and Brook Lopez sealed the victory for the Bucks with a free throw and an intentional miss that ricocheted off the rim and back into his hands.
Antetokounmpo remarked, “I believe we did a fantastic job maintaining our composure.” “We had the lead, but lost it. They were playing well and moving the ball effectively.
“Harden was on fire, making shots and involving his teammates. We maintained our composure and continued to rely on one another.”