LeBron James recorded 29 points, nine assists and eight boards and Anthony Davis tallied 32 points and 13 rebounds as the Los Angeles Lakers weathered a career-high-tying 41-point effort by Jayson Tatum to beat the Boston Celtics, 114-112, on Sunday at Staples Center.
The historic rivals went back-and-forth throughout the game, which went right down to the wire. The Celtics took a 110-108 lead with 1:17 left when Jaylen Brown, who scored 20 points, knocked down a three-pointer.
Missed shots on both ends set a final 37 seconds that took several minutes due to a handful of officiating reviews and a technical foul assessed to Celtics coach Brad Stevens.
James’ fadeaway jumper with 30.4 seconds remaining gave Los Angeles the lead for good, with Davis making three free throws over the final 12 seconds to seal it.
Two minutes into the second quarter, Dwight Howard was called for a goaltend. The officials had to review the call due to complaints from Howard and James. The final call became Inadvertent whistle. This season has been filled with calls like this. Especially the calls against the Mavs and Portland which led to them losing the game.
Eighteen of Tatum’s 41 came in the third quarter, which ended with the teams deadlocked at 87.
Dwight Howard, who scored 10 points and grabbed seven rebounds off the bench, keyed the Lakers in the early fourth quarter with six of the team’s first eight points in the period.
Kyle Kuzma also scored in double figures off the bench for Los Angeles with 16 points. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope also came on in reserve duties to force a critical turnover moment.
All five Boston starters scored in double figures, with Daniel Theis adding 16 points and nine rebounds. Gordon Hayward scored 10 points, almost eight fewer than his season average, and shot 0-of-5 from behind the three-point line. Hayward flirted with a triple-double, however, dishing a team-high nine assists and pulling down eight rebounds.