NBA

Davis lifts Lakers past Wizards with 55-point haul, Celtics overpower Nets

By Sports Desk December 04, 2022

Anthony Davis put up a sensational 55-point haul to lead the Los Angeles Lakers to their fourth straight road win, triumphing 130-119 over the Washington Wizards on Sunday.

Davis, who scored 44 points against the Milwaukee Bucks in the Lakers' previous game, could not eclipse his career-high 59 points from 2016 against the Detroit Pistons.

But Davis' 55 points, coming from 22-of-30 field shooting and nine-of-nine shooting from the line, were the second most in a single game this NBA season, behind only Joel Embiid's 59 against the Utah Jazz on November 13.

The eight-time All-Star scored 31 of his 55 points in the second half, adding 17 rebounds and three blocks. Davis is the first Laker with back-to-back 40-point games since Kobe Bryant in March 2013.

LeBron James, who had been listed as questionable due to an ankle issue, added 29 points on 12-of-26 field shooting with eight rebounds and six assists but committed five turnovers.

Russell Westbrook came off the bench to contribute a season-high 15 assists with seven rebounds, while guard Lonnie Walker IV added 20 points on four-of-four three-point shooting.

The Wizards were not helped by a game-ending first-quarter injury to All-Star Bradley Beal. Kristaps Porzingis top scored for the Wizards with 27 points on 11-of-25 shooting, while ex-Laker Kyle Kuzma added 26 points with seven rebounds before fouling out.

The victory improved the Lakers to 10-12, having won three games in a row, but they remain 12th in the Western Conference.

Brown helps Celtics snap Nets' streaks

The NBA-best Boston Celtics ended the Brooklyn Nets' four-game winning streak and six-game winning home stand on 34 points from Jaylen Brown as they triumphed 103-92.

Brown led the way for the Celtics with 20 of his 34 points in the first quarter, finishing also with 10 rebounds, while Jayson Tatum scored 29 points on 10-of-19 field shooting with 11 rebounds.

Kyrie Irving struggled against his former franchise, shooting seven-of-21 from the field for 18 points with eight rebounds and five assists. Kevin Durant top scored for the Nets with 31 points but gave up eight turnovers.

Suns extend struggling Spurs' skid

The Western Conference-leading Phoenix Suns condemned the San Antonio Spurs to 11 straight losses with a 133-95 blowout win led by Deandre Ayton's double-double.

Suns center Ayton finished with 25 points and 10 rebounds, while Devin Booker added 20 points on seven-of-16 field shooting, with Mikal Bridges making six-of-seven triples in his 20 points.

The struggling Spurs were blown away in a 36-11 second quarter, seeing them close within two defeats of a franchise-worst losing streak, set in 1989.

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    Kyrie Irving "felt very disrespected" during his time with the Brooklyn Nets, he said after joining the Dallas Mavericks.

    Irving was traded by the Nets to the Mavericks after a tumultuous four years in Brooklyn.

    The eight-time All-Star joined the Nets alongside Kevin Durant in 2019, but the pair were unable to deliver success together.

    Injuries, along with Irving's absence as he was unvaccinated at the height of the coronavirus pandemic, limited the two superstars to only 71 starts together.

    Irving pushed for a trade ahead of Thursday's deadline and was granted his move to the Mavericks before explaining why he wanted to leave Brooklyn.

    "I just know I want to be places where I'm celebrated and not just tolerated or dealt with in a way that doesn't make me feel respected," he said.

    "There were times during this process where I was in Brooklyn and just felt very disrespected, my talent.

    "I work extremely hard at what I do; nobody ever talks about my work ethic, everyone talks about what I'm doing off the floor. I want to change that narrative, write my own story, continue to prepare in the gym, and now I'm in Dallas, control what I can control.

    "I'm always going to be close with those guys in Brooklyn, like I am with those guys in Boston, like I am with those guys in Cleveland.

    "It's a team competitive sport, but we care about each other's families way more off the court. I know those relationships will extend, I'm just preparing to win.

    "I'm not the person to really speak on names or go to someone behind their back and leak stuff to the media, that's never been me.

    "I've been an audience member seeing people say things about me that ultimately just fall off my shoulder. I'm in a place I'm grateful I got to grow into.

    "I spent time off the basketball court that gave me the time to appreciate life in a new way.

    "I know I need healthy boundaries. Especially in this entertainment business, there's a lot of disrespect that goes on with people's names and their families; I'm just not with it.

    "It's nothing personal against those guys in the front office, it's just what I'm willing to accept.

    "I took a chance and luckily the Dallas Mavericks picked me up. It's just all what I can control."

  • Heat trade Dedmon to Spurs, injury blow for Lowry Heat trade Dedmon to Spurs, injury blow for Lowry

    Dewayne Dedmon's time with the Heat is over after Miami traded the back-up centre to the San Antonio Spurs on Tuesday.

    The Spurs also receive a second-round pick in the 2028 draft, while the Heat got cash considerations, which gives the franchise financial flexibility.

    Dedmon is averaging 5.7 points and 3.6 rebounds in 30 games this season, but has only appeared in one contest since being ejected for unsportsmanlike conduct in a win over the Oklahoma City Thunder on January 10.

    In that game, the 33-year-old argued with Heat coaches about playing time, feuded with team-mates and knocked a massage gun onto the court during play. He was suspended for one game by the Heat for his actions.

    He joins a San Antonio team that has the second-worst record in the Western Conference at 14-40, and this will be his second stint with the franchise after playing there in 2016-17.

    The 10-year veteran with career averages of 6.4 points and 5.8 rebounds has also played for the Golden State Warriors, Philadelphia 76ers, Orlando Magic, Atlanta Hawks and Sacramento Kings.

    The Heat, who are atop the Southeast Division with a 29-25 record, move on without Dedmon, as well as Kyle Lowry for the foreseeable future.

    Lowry sat out Saturday's loss to the Milwaukee Bucks due to left knee soreness, and the Heat announced he will miss at least three more games.

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  • Salernitana 0-3 Juventus: Vlahovic stars as resurgent Bianconeri bounce back Salernitana 0-3 Juventus: Vlahovic stars as resurgent Bianconeri bounce back

    Juventus returned to winning ways in Serie A after Dusan Vlahovic scored two and assisted the other in a comfortable 3-0 victory at Salernitana on Tuesday.

    Massimiliano Allegri's side, seemingly shaken by their 15-point deduction, had not won any of their previous three league games but responded with a dominant performance at Stadio Arechi.

    Vlahovic's 28th-minute penalty set the visiting Bianconeri on their way before the Serbia international fortuitously assisted compatriot Filip Kostic on the stroke of half-time.

    Star man Vlahovic added his second after 47 minutes as victory moved a resurgent Juve up to 10th, albeit some 13 points behind fourth-placed Lazio.

    Vlahovic headed an inviting Mattia De Sciglio cross over in an otherwise uneventful opening, but the striker made amends just before the half-hour mark.

    A needless foul inside the area from Juve loanee Hans Nicolussi on Fabio Miretti offered the visitors the chance of the breakthrough, and Vlahovic powered in from the penalty spot with the help of Guillermo Ochoa's left post.

    Vlahovic then wastefully dragged wide and made a similar connection with a poor right-footed volley, only for the latter miscued attempt to find Kostic, who poked in the second goal at the back post.

    A delicate Nicolo Fagioli throughball teed up Vlahovic to add to his tally after the interval, the striker slotting a cool left-footed finish low past the onrushing Ochoa.

    Angel Di Maria's fizzing strike cannoned against the crossbar and Moise Kean was denied by Ochoa's left post as Juve returned to form in emphatic fashion.

    What does it mean? Juve back on track after Allegri warning

    A 5-1 thrashing by runaways leaders Napoli and a 2-0 surprise defeat to Monza in Juve's last three league games, either side of a 3-3 draw with Atalanta, had caused Allegri some concern.

    With Juve docked 15 points following an investigation into past transfer dealings, Allegri warned the Bianconeri they must first hit the 40-point mark to stave off an unlikely relegation.

    Juve took a step towards doing that with an assured performance to move onto 26 points, though they have significant ground to make up for a place in Europe, trailing Italy's top six by 12.

    Vlahovic's Salernitana hot streak continues

    Vlahovic has now scored five goals in four league matches against Salernitana, with a brace for Fiorentina and three strikes for new club Juve, including his double in this game.

    The first-half strike was Vlahovic's 14th goal from the spot from 15 attempts in Serie A – the best success rate (93 per cent) among players to take 15 or more penalties in the competition since his debut in 2018.

    Concern for Miretti

    Promising young midfielder Miretti won the penalty for Vlahovic's opener before leaving the field on a stretcher after 40 minutes with what appeared a concerning lower-leg injury.

    The 19-year-old, who has enjoyed his breakthrough season for Juve this term, suffered the injury in a tackle with Boulaye Dia, and Allegri will be hoping the blow was not as bad as it first appeared.

    What's next?

    Juve are at home to Fiorentina on Sunday, while Salernitana visit Hellas Verona the following day.

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