Timothy Rice/ALOST

akoiki-passport2 – by Adesina O. Koiki
A Lot of Sports Talk editor-in-chief

WASHINGTON — Not only were the Los Angeles Lakers jumped on at the beginning of the game, they saw one of their All-Stars take a blow to the face, a microcosm of the early punch that they took to start. However, that star, Anthony Davis, took the standing-eight count, continued on with the fight, and then proceeded to throw haymaker after haymaker to help lead the Lakers to victory.

Davis scored 19 of his 35 points in the first quarter while also grabbing 18 rebounds to lead the Lakers to 125-120 victory over the Washington Wizards inside Capital One Arena on Wednesday evening. LeBron James had 25 points and nine assists as Los Angeles has now won eight of its last nine games and is quickly closing in on both Phoenix and Sacramento for the No. 6 spot in the Western Conference and an automatic passage into the NBA Playoffs, trailing both by 1.5 games.

“We want to continue to play good basketball,” James said. “The postseason’s still kind of a ways away … Postseason prep, all that other stuff is totally different from the regular season, so wherever we fall is where we fall.”

Davis took a literal fall early on in the game, when an errant elbow from Wizards center Tristan Vukcevic caught the Lakers big man in the nose. Davis stayed on the floor for a couple of minutes before getting back on his feet.

Washington had built a 19-8 lead, but then Davis proceeded to take control of the rest of the quarter, forcing his way inside for tough shots and creating contact from Wizards defenders. Davis took 11 free throws in the quarter and made all of them, and he also grabbed six rebounds in the frame — three on the offensive glass.

Los Angeles’ lead grew to 14 points after a 9-2 run to start the third quarter before the Wizards fought back, cutting the Lakers’ lead down to two and finding success slowing Davis down by playing a zone defense. James then beat the zone with a drive to the basket before finding Jared Butler for a dunk to make the score 109-105, and that basket was the first two points of a 12-0 run that sealed the game.

*Editor’s note: Above the byline is the photo gallery from Wednesday evening’s event, with all photos taken by ALOST staff photographer Timothy Rice. After clicking on the first photo to enlarge the picture, make sure to press the left and right arrow buttons to scroll through the rest of the pictures. There are 24 pictures in total.

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Tags : Los Angeles LakersNational Basketball AssociationWashington Wizards

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