NBA Playoffs – playoffs – working day 17
There will be a finalist from California in the Western Conference of the NBA. It is not yet known what it will be, but the first to present their candidacy have been the Los Angeles Lakers, who this Friday have asserted the weight of their history and the game of LeBron James, Anthony Davis and D’Angelo Russell. They have unceremoniously crushed the Memphis Grizzlies in Game 6 of the first round of the playoff. They end the series with 4 games to 2 in their favor and qualify for the Western semifinals. They will face the winner of Game 7 of the series that pits the reigning NBA champions, the Golden State Warriors, against the Sacramento Kings, two other teams from California.
The Lakers, who entered the playoffs in the playoffs, they leave out the Grizzlies, second in the West. His position in the standings was somewhat misleading. They started the league in a disastrous way, but they overcame it and finished in top form and reinforced. They closed out the regular season with an eight-win, two-loss streak.
Those from Los Angeles came to the playoff with LeBron James crowned with all kinds of records, with Anthony Davis in top form and with the signing of D’Angelo Russell in the last window. With all three on the court, his record was 9 wins and 1 loss. That trio has led the team in the series against Memphis, in which Rui Hachimura and Austin Reaves, decisive in the first game, have also performed well.
The Lakers, the most successful team in the NBA, had only passed the first round of the playoffs in the last decade. It was in 2020, when the team finished champions in the last flash of their greatness, but missing out on the playoffs had become the norm.
In the series against the Grizzlies, they took home field advantage by winning the first game on the road. And then the three from home have won with authority, especially this Friday. The team has come out willing to ensure the classification in the Crypto.com Arena and already in the first quarter has gone ahead by 11 points (31-20). Another partial in favor has allowed them to go to halftime with a solid advantage (59-44) and the game has been sentenced in the third quarter, in which the Lakers have clearly dominated (41-25).
Thus, they reached the last quarter with an insurmountable 31-point advantage, which allowed the fans and Los Angeles players to go into celebration mode in the last stretch of the game.
Anthony Davis has dominated under the basket with 14 rebounds, 16 points and a few blocks and has been the most decisive player of the game. D’Angelo Russell has been the top scorer, with 31 points, followed by LeBron James with 22. The coach, Darwin Ham, has given him rest when the advantage was comfortable.
In the Grizzlies, the top scorer has been the Spanish Santi Aldama, with 16 points in 29 minutes, but with a dull Ja Morant (10 points) and a low general tone, the good performance of the Spaniard remains a mere anecdote.
The Lakers have dominated in rebounds, blocks, assists and, above all, in aiming. His percentage of success in field goals has been 53%, compared to 30% of those from Memphis. There has been no color. As in the good old days, Jack Nicholson was sitting in the front row. A regular in the golden stage of the team, at 86 years old, he had not gone to the field since October 2021.
to the seventh game
NBA Playoffs – playoffs – working day 17
In the other game on Friday, the Sacramento Kings beat the reigning champions, the Golden State Warriors (99-118) at home. The Kings, who had been out of the playoffs since the 2005-2006 season, showed more hunger for victory. Very focused on defense, determined to stop Stephen Curry, the great star of the Warriors, they were an intense, solid and rocky team.
Domantas Sabonis left the skin and came out with a black eye after a blow in a jump. Malik Monk scored 28 points, while De’Aaron Fox had 26 and 11 assists. For the Kings, who had lost the fifth game in their field, this was a matter of life and death.
For those of San Francisco it has been a great missed opportunity. The Warriors have a hard time winning away from home this year and their previous victory in Sacramento allowed them to have scored at home. They haven’t made it. Now, everything will be decided in the seventh game, back in Sacramento, this Sunday.
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