The Los Angeles Lakers and the Houston Rockets last faced each other in the Orlando Bubble. The LeBron James led side comfortably defeated them 4-1 and decisively won the clash of titans.
Since then, a lot has changed. The Lakers have reformed their team with a stronger bench whereas the Rockets have let go of Russell Westbrook to house John Wall and DeMarcus Cousins.
These changes have benefited the Lakers as they sit on the top of the WC alongside the Phoenix Suns while the Rockets struggle at the tail. Still, Lakers vs Rockets is always a high-tension game because the fans get to see the classic James vs James battle. However, this time around, a different clash became the headline.
Since the beginning of the game, DeMarcus Cousins was looking dangerous. He already had two 26-feet+ three-point jumpers to his name in the first nine minutes of the game. But just as the game went into its 10th minute, something nasty took place.
The Lakers were 21-15 ahead when forward Markieff Morris pushed away shooting guard Jae’sean Tate while putting a screen. Just as Tate fell flat on the floor, Boogie could not resist himself and shouldered Markieff back. This got on to the nerves of the 31-YO Laker as he retaliated and pushed Boogie with a force.
The situation went out of hand and the officials had to run in and calm Markieff down. LeBron James, who was handling the ball when all this happened, came and helped tone down the rage alongside Montrezl Harrell. Take a look at the nasty brawl –
This gave Markieff a type 1 flagrant foul, and it was followed by a double technical that ultimately led to his untimely ejection. The hot-headed forward could play for only 3 minutes and contributed just one rebound in the game. Interestingly, Boogie himself got ejected a few minutes later after fouling LeBron.
On the other hand, John Wall scored 14 points after scoring zero in the first quarter while P. J. Tucker remained scoreless in both quarters. Star shooter James Harden also had a very tough night as he recorded just 1 point in Q2 (total 11 points until halftime) with 1/4 from the three-point range.
The Lakers had a convincing lead at 65-46 until the first half but the third quarter ended with the lead shrinking to 13 points.
AD looked specifically impressive as he enjoyed a perfect 8/8 from the field and received excellent support from the bench. The Lakers will sit at 8-3 after winning this game.
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