Lakers take series lead against Suns

May 29, 2021
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    Los Angeles Lakers forward-center Anthony Davis in action in game threeAnthony Davis became just the fifth Lakers player to score more than 30 points and come up with more than 10 rebounds in back-to-back play-off games

    The Los Angeles Lakers won their first play-off game at home in eight seasons to take a 2-1 series lead with a 109-95 victory over the Phoenix Suns.

    Anthony Davis again led the way for the Lakers with 34 points and 11 rebounds in the first round of the best-of-seven Western Conference play-offs.

    LeBron James scored 21 points as nearly 7,500 fans watched the first play-off game at the Staples Centre since 2013.

    The Lakers won last year's NBA title in a bio-secure bubble on neutral ground.

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    Davies became the first Lakers player since four-time NBA champion Shaquille O'Neal to score more than 30 points and come up with more than 10 rebounds in successive play-off games.

    Lakers legends Elgin Baylor, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Kobe Bryant are the only other players to also manage the feat for the club.

    The Suns led 28-27 after the first quarter, but the Lakers led 43-40 lead at half-time and then went on a 16-6 run at the start of the second half to take control of the game.

    A reverse lay-in by James, which brought huge applause from the home crowd, put Los Angeles 21 points up in the fourth quarter and on their way to victory.

    The Suns – led by Deandre Ayton with 22 points and 11 rebounds – cut LA's advantage to eight points with just under three minutes left as Jae Crowder landed a three-pointer. However, that was as close as they would get.

    Game four is in Los Angeles on Sunday.

    Elsewhere, Khris Middleton recorded 22 points, eight rebounds and five assists as the Milwaukee Bucks beat the Miami Heat 113-84 to take a 3-0 lead in their first-round Eastern Conference play-off series.

    The Bucks can complete a series sweep on Saturday in Miami.

    Nikola Jokic scored 36 points and Austin Rivers notched 16 of his 21 points in the fourth quarter the Denver Nuggets beat the Portland Trail Blazers on the road to take a 2-1 lead in their Western Conference series.

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