Recap: The Lakers bounce the Cavaliers for their ninth straight win

Jan 13, 2020; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) drives to the basket past Cleveland Cavaliers forward Alfonzo McKinnie (28) during the second quarter at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers continue to tear it up in 2020 to the tune of nine straight wins. The visiting Cleveland Cavaliers were taken down by a score of 128-99. After a slow start, they began to buckle down and show why they’ve been the Western Conference’s best team through 40 games. LeBron James led all scorers with 31 points. Dwight Howard added 21 points and 15 rebounds off the bench tonight.

Quiet First Quarter

The Lakers came into this game leading all teams in first quarter scoring with an average of 29.9 point per game. Tonight, they could only muster 21 points and fell behind early. The absences of Anthony Davis and Rajon Rondo were sorely missed on offense to start the game.

Second Half Eruption

The Lakers more than made up for their slow beginning in the second half. They outscored the Cavaliers 81-51 to end the game. Their third quarter run of 37-22 created separation for them to grab ahold of the game. Despite the competitive spirit of LeBron’s hometown team to start, the game never seemed out of reach for L.A., as proven in this half.

Defended The ‘Land

Los Angeles showed tremendous energy and effort in slowing down the Cavs attack. They forced the Cavaliers into 20 turnovers on the evening. Cleveland came into the game averaging 105.1 points per contest and were held below with 99 points scored. Los Angeles did an even stronger job defending the three-point line. The Cavaliers shot 27.3 percent from long range on the night.

The Lakers return to action against the Orlando Magic at Staples Center on Wednesday.

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