Los Angeles, Thursday @peoplesport11
Lonzo Ball and the Los Angeles Lakers had the last word on John Wall and visiting Washington after days of NBA trash talk, prevailing 102-99 in overtime Wednesday.
Brandon Ingram scored 19 points, Larry Nance Jnr added 18 and each grabbed 10 rebounds while teen rookie guard Ball had six points, eight rebounds and 10 assists to spark the Lakers.
The Wizards missed out on their first 4-0 season start since 1978. “We were a half-step slow all night,” said Wizards coach Scott Brooks. “The fourth quarter we were just standing around. They played better than us down the stretch.
They made big shots. They deserved to win.” Lavar Ball, Lonzo’s famously outspoken father, began the verbal fireworks after a Sunday loss to New Orleans, saying of the Wizards, “They better beware. Because Lonzo ain’t losing again. Not in the same week.” Wizards center Marcin Gortat tweeted in response that “JohnWall will torture (Ball) for 48 minutes.”
Wall vowed “no mercy” to the Washington Post and added, “His dad has been talking… that makes me want to go out there and lead my team and play the best I can play.” It didn’t work out that way.
Wall had 18 points on 7-of-22 shooting with nine assists, missed a tying 3-point attempt at the final buzzer and lost the ball out of bounds on a drive to the hoop late in overtime, his appeal for a foul unrewarded.
“A lot of contact. I thought I got fouled,” Wall said. “We’ve got to learn how to close them out. We had the game in our hand.” LaVar Ball praised his son’s performance despite Wall producing more points. “When he goes off, people get stuck on them points,” the elder Ball said. “He does a lot more things than score points all the time to get the team to win. He’s versatile.”
The Cavaliers’ lineups are changing daily. Their defence is a mess, their slow starts are puzzling and the starting point guard is hurt. Cleveland’s got some problems. LeBron James minimizes them all.
Making a rare start at point guard, James scored 34 points as the Cavs, using another early season line-up, awakened after a sluggish first half and beat the Chicago Bulls 119-112 on Tuesday night.
Although he often handles the ball and runs Cleveland’s offense, James had not officially been listed as a guard since 2012 with Miami. The superstar added 13 assists, including a no-look, behind-the-back dish to Jae Crowder for a 3-pointer during Cleveland’s 15-3 spurt in the third quarter. The Bulls did all they could. James just did more. – AFP