On Christmas Day, the NBA gifted fans with five games. The games featured some of the best teams in the NBA, with some games being close and others being blowouts. The most surprising blowout came from the Los Angeles Lakers.
The Los Angeles Lakers beat the Golden State Warriors 127-101. The Lakers’ 26-point victory came without LeBron James for the last quarter and a half of the game. James left the game in the third quarter with a groin injury. He did not return in the fourth quarter, but the Lakers maintained their lead.
James had 17 points, 13 rebounds and five assists before the injury. He was injured in the middle of the third quarter after trying to grab a loose ball. James is listed day-to-day with a groin injury. He won’t travel with the Lakers for their game on Thursday, when the Lakers face their division rival the Sacramento Kings.
Despite James’ injury, the Lakers pulled off an impressive victory. Kyle Kuzma led the Lakers with 19 points. Ivica Zubac had 18 points and 11 rebounds. The Lakers also received good contributions from their bench. Point guard Rajon Rondo 15 points and 10 assists after starting the game on the bench. Josh Hart and Lance Stephenson also contributed off the bench with 12 points and 11 points respectively.
The Warriors had an off game, which resulted in the Lakers’ blowout win. Andre Iguodala had 23 points off the bench. Kevin Durant had 21 points, while Steph Curry had 15 points and shot 5-of-17 from the field. Klay Thompson scored five points. The Warriors also shot 25 percent from three-point range. The Warriors did not play up to their potential and the Lakers took advantage of it.
For the Warriors, this is only one game, however, for the Lakers, this was a statement. There are more games to be played between the Lakers and Warriors, but the Lakers have a 1-0 record in the season series. The first game was a blowout but the remaining three will be more competitive. In other words, the Lakers and Warriors rivalry begins.