James leads Lakers past Grizzlies to open two-game set

MEMPHIS, TENNESSE (AP) — LeBron James took over the game to open the fourth quarter and helped the Los Angeles Lakers pull away for their third straight victory.

James had 22 points, 13 rebounds and eight assists, Anthony Davis added 17 points and nine rebounds as the Lakers opened a two-game set in Memphis with a 108-94 victory over the Grizzlies yesterday.

“We were doing a lot of jostling with Memphis,” James said, “At the start of the fourth, I wanted to try and implement myself and my scoring a little bit more. Get a bit more in attack mode and see if I could kind of open the game up and we were able to do that.”

James played within the offence for the first three quarters, then became more aggressive to start the fourth, scoring the Lakers first 10 points of the period. His three-pointer with 2:34 left made it 101-90.

Montrezl Harrell added 16 points and nine rebounds to help the Lakers.

Kyle Anderson led Memphis with 18 points, and Jonas Valanciunas had 14 points and 10 rebounds. Tyus Jones also had 14 points, and rookie Desmond Bane had 13.

The Lakers led 56-54 at the break after both teams held advantages of at least nine points in the first half. Los Angeles took a 77-75 lead into the fourth.

After surrendering 36 points in the first quarter, the Lakers held the Grizzlies to 18, 21, and 19 over the final three periods.

“That’s figuring out opponents, making in-game adjustments and doing what’s necessary to get a win,” Lakers coach Frank Vogel said.

Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James shoots past Memphis Grizzlies centre Gorgui Dieng. PHOTO: AP