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New FSM Essential Recap: Lakers vs Jazz- Game 58

Franchise Sports Media

Los Angeles Lakers (27-31) | Utah Jazz (36-22)


The Lakers came back from down 14, as LeBron James led them with the last 10 points to secure the 106-101 victory.


Lakers vs Jazz
Photo Credit: Mark J. Terrill/AP

While the potential to improve is still alive for the Lakers thanks to the buyout market, last night was a roller coaster of emotions. Fresh off a Super Bowl championship capped off by a signature sack, Aaron Donald made an appearance that energized Laker Nation and their team.

Anthony Davis landed brutally on his ankle at baseline in the second quarter, visibly in pain. Davis was evaluated, and x-rays were negative. However, the injury forced him to be carried off the court, and the NBA community hopes he can get better.

So the Lakers and Davis escaped disaster. Davis should be back since they have an 8-day break, and with the initial reports saying he won’t be missing the season with the proper treatment.

Anthony Davis started last night in dominant fashion, scoring 6 of the first 8. This was in light of an 11-0 run to start for the Lakers, with Utah pleading for a timeout within the first three minutes. Donovan Mitchell began to wake up to end the run, scoring the first five for his side. While Davis and Westbrook were playing with a presence early, a 25-11 run led by Mitchell had the Jazz on top towards the end of the first.

Anthony Davis had gone 1-11 on his previous attempts from deep until he finally hit one to end the first. It had the game all knotted up at 27, with Donavon Mitchell and Davis posting 15 points early. James only posted one bucket in the quarter for the Lakers, but the Jazz defense led by Gobert still had him as their top threat.

Talen-Horton Tucker would block a Mike Conley attempt to start the second, allowing James to get his night going with two quick buckets. The game would remain close throughout the quarter until the injury of Davis. Mitchell’s reaction was of visible concern with the rest of his team, and not even the opponent wants to see a superstar go down like that. The Jazz would maintain a slight lead heading into the half, but a three by James followed by a ferocious dunk had the Lakers holding on to the momentum.

Donovan Mitchell posted 26 points before the break, proving he wasn’t willing to lose to the Lakers for a second straight time. Davis had 17 in 17 minutes, but Horton-Tucker had four clutch blocks that had the Lakers closely behind the Jazz at the break. Given what a week it has been for Los Angeles, the Lakers looked to feed off that energy in the second half.


The Lakers may have lost Anthony Davis in the first half, but they have had the fire power all year to get it done after the break, down 53-46.


Lakers vs Jazz
Photo Credit: Mark J. Terrill/AP

The third quarter was back and forth in offense to start, but the Lakers remained behind. Mitchell reached 30 points to put the Jazz up by 11 until Malik Monk hit a contested three to follow. Royce O’Neale would later help Mitchell lead a 7-1 run to give Utah their largest lead of the night of 14. James got something going to end the quarter for the Lakers, leading a 10-4 run to bring the Jazz lead down to eight heading into the final quarter.

The Jazz did not allow the Lakers to gain any ground to start the fourth, as Jordan Clarkson began to continue his star-level play off the bench. However, the game would turn around quickly as the fourth quarter progressed. Finally, the Lakers began to find that rhythm they had in the opening minutes.

Down 12 with 6 minutes to play, the Lakers went on a stellar 16-2 run to put themselves back on top. James tied the game for the Lakers from deep and gave them the lead with a layup to give him 30 on the night. Conley got it back for Utah with two free throws, but championship energy had James willing to hit another three following Los Angeles’ win in the Super Bowl. The Lakers would not lose the lead again as the shot went in. Bogdanovich would have the deficit down to just 1 with a three, but the Lakers were able to chalk last night up with the victory.

It was a much-needed win for the Lakers, especially with the loss of Anthony Davis. There is still talk of potential moves in the buyout market but taking down a top team in the Jazz is precisely what they could hope for right now. Westbrook had 17, and James had 33 to extend his streak to a career-high of 23 straight games with 25 or more. Mitchell finished with 37 on five threes but blowing a 14-point lead surely disappointed him and his team. James had the last 10 points, and Aaron Donald made sure to let him know how much he’s respected in the entire sports community


The All-Star Break has arrived for the NBA, but the Lakers are back against the Clippers next Friday at 7 p.m. on ESPN.        


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Duncan Dye – Franchise Sports Media

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