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FSM Essential Recap: Lakers vs Mavericks – Game 61

Franchise Sports Media

Los Angeles Lakers (29-32) | Dallas Mavericks (32-30)


The Los Angeles Lakers are now on a three-game winning streak after coming back from a 27-point deficit to defeat the Dallas Mavericks 111-108.

The Lakers vs Mavericks saw an epic comeback by Los Angeles

Lakers vs Mavericks LeBron James
Photo Credit: LM Otero/AP

The Los Angeles Lakers rallied from a 27-point first-half deficit to defeat the Dallas Mavericks 111-108 and improve to 29-32. For perspective, teams were 0-138 this season when trailing by 27+ points. Unfortunately for Laker fans, LeBron James did suffer an ankle injury late in the third quarter, though luckily, he was still able to finish the game.

James told reporters that his foot/ankle “has been better,” but it was important for him to finish the game, “I definitely wasn’t going to the locker room and not finish the game. The importance of this game and then the momentum that we had, I felt like we could steal one after being down.” 

After the injury, James hit a tying 3-pointer to start the fourth, then another bucket for the Lakers’ first lead since the middle of the first quarter. He’ll get treatment and monitor it ahead of the next two games. James was still able to finish with 26 points (10-for-23 FGs, 1-for-6 3s), eight rebounds, and three assists. 

Jarred Vanderbilt was a crucial player in this one, as his defense and intensity aided the Lakers’ come back, “I like that challenge every single night, you know, being able to guard the best players no matter 1-5. I think that’s my value and my impact on this team,” Vanderbilt said postgame. Vanderbilt finished with 15 points, 17 rebounds, and four steals.

Luka Doncic had 26 points, nine rebounds, and five assists for the Mavericks, but the youngest of the four superstars was limited, mainly by the defense of Vanderbilt, after a 14-point first quarter by Doncic sent Dallas on its way to the huge lead.

Darvin Ham on Vanderbilt, “His defense on Luka, his energy, that’s a tall task to try and manage that matchup, as skilled as Luka is. He was up for the challenge to try and make it as difficult as possible.”


In the third quarter alone, Vanderbilt had eight points, eight boards, and three steals, including offensive boards on back-to-back possessions. 


Lakers vs Mavericks Jarred Vanderbilt
Photo Credit: LM Otero/AP

Anthony Davis on having Vanderbilt in the lineup alongside him and James, “It gives us a lot more freedom on the defensive end,” Davis himself had a great game with 30 points, 15 rebounds, four assists, and three blocks. 

D’Angelo Russell didn’t play at Dallas due to the right ankle sprain he suffered early in the Golden State game on Thursday. Dennis Schroder replaced Russell in the starting lineup. With Russell out, Schroder put on a solid display with 16 points (5-for-12 FGs, 0-for-4 3s) and eight assists.

Kyrie Irving had 21 points (8-for-22 FGs, 2-for-10 3s), 11 rebounds, and five assists for Dallas but didn’t take over in the fourth quarter the way he did in his first victory with Doncic over San Antonio.

Dallas blew the game open when they started the second quarter on a 10-2 run. There were shades of the Lakers’ February 13th loss at Portland, when they gave up 17 1st half 3’s. Dallas had made 12-for-23 3s (52.2%) in the first half alone. The Lakers gave themselves a shot at a comeback by trimming that 27-point deficit to 14 at the half.

In the Lakers vs Mavericks game, L.A. trailed by 27 points at one point.

The Lakers outscored the Mavericks 31-20 in the third quarter to trim the 14-point halftime deficit to three. Dallas had 61 points at halftime, but the Lakers held them to 47 in the second half.

The Lakers vs Mavericks start of the second half.

Lakers vs Mavericks Anthony Davis
Photo Credit: LM Otero/AP

A 5-0 scoring run from James to start the fourth quarter had the Lakers up by two, their first lead since the 9:59 mark of the first quarter.

A turnaround fadeaway from Davis gave the Lakers a 108-105 lead with 18.1 seconds left. The Lakers also managed to trim the clock with Schroder avoiding a foul, giving the Mavericks only 2.2 seconds.

James said postgame, “I feel like we’re in a good place. We want to try to continue that.”

With this third straight win, the Lakers are now up to 11th, one game behind the New Orleans Pelicans for 10th and 2.5 games behind Dallas for 6th.

Up next are the Memphis Grizzlies.

The final score in the Lakers vs Mavericks game was 111-108 Los Angeles.  

The Lakers travel to Memphis to take on the Grizzlies Tuesday, Feb. 28th, at 4:30 p.m. PT. The game is on Spectrum SportsNet, NBA League Pass, and TNT.


– Jake Ideguchi-Furukawa – Franchise Sports Media

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