The stars were out in Hollywood as LeBron James led the Los Angeles Lakers to a stunning 117-111 overtime victory over the Memphis Grizzlies, giving the purple and gold a 3-1 lead in the first round playoff series.
James, who is in his 20th season in the NBA, is the oldest player in league history to have 20+ points and 20+ rebounds in a playoff game.
The Lakers were once again blown away by the 19-time All-Star’s performance, and for the second time this season, they greeted his post-game visit in the locker room with a bombardment of goat noises.
The first round series between Memphis and Los Angeles has been a tense affair thus far, and Game 4 was no exception.
According to sources, the Houston Rockets have reached an agreement with former Boston Celtics head coach Ime Udoka.
The Grizzlies led by two points going into the fourth quarter, but with five minutes left in regulation, they increased their lead to seven.
The Lakers then responded behind D’Angelo Russell’s spectacular offensive run. The 27-year-old scored nine straight points, including three clutch baskets from beyond the arc.
With the game towards the end, neither side could establish a large lead, but Memphis took the lead on a classic Grizzlies bucket.
Jaren Jackson Jr. blocked a Rui Hachimura shot, and Ja Morant then sprinted forward on the fast break and delivered a dazzling pass to Desmond Bane, who scored an uncontested layup to put Utah ahead 104-102 with 6.1 seconds remaining.
Memphis now had a fantastic opportunity to tie the series, but with the ball in James’ hands, you can never be too sure.
The ‘King’ breezed by Xavier Tillman and drove to the basket, only to be met by the towering Jackson Jr. – the 2022/23 NBA Defensive Player of the Year.
James fired up a shot high off the glass that looped over the defender and banged into the basket to send the game into overtime.
LeBron’s clutch shooting didn’t stop there, as the 38-year-old gave the Lakers control of the extra period with a tough hoop over series.
Speaking to reporters after the game, James remained calm despite the attention surrounding his performance.
“I just try to be as good as I can offensively and, more importantly, defensively,” James said. That was the attitude tonight.
“My teammates informed me that I had 20 and 20. It’s the first time I’ve done it in my career, so that’s pretty good, I guess,” James joked of his record-breaking performance.
The usually outspoken Brooks and Grizzlies talisman Morant both declined to speak to the media, as the young team appears to be destined for an early exit.