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Lakers down Celtics, split season rivalry



LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers dribbles past Jayson Tatum of the Boston Celtics during the first half at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. (AFP)

The Los Angeles Lakers scored a comfortable win over the Boston Celtics at the Staples Center on Tuesday.

LeBron James finished with 30 points while Russell Westbrook added 24 in a 117-102 win for the Lakers, who improved to 13-12 with the win.

James, who returned to playing duty last week after entering the league’s Covid-19 protocols following a series of conflicting test results, has now posted 30 points or more in four of his last five appearances.

“We had a lot of good moments tonight and we want to continue to build off that. There’s a lot we can clean up but tonight was one of the best 48-minute games that we’ve had so far,” said James, relieved to be playing again after a season disrupted by injury, suspension and last week’s Covid-19 intrigue.

“Unfortunately, I haven’t been out on the floor as much as I would like this season, but I felt really good tonight,” James said.

“My teammates picked me up and I tried to pick them up. Hopefully, we can keep it going for the foreseeable future.”

Anthony Davis had 17 points and 16 rebounds for the Lakers while Talen Horton-Tucker chipped in with 12 points.

Boston’s scoring was led by Jayson Tatum, who finished with 34 points after draining 13 of 22 from the field, including five three-pointers.

Elsewhere Tuesday, the New York Knicks halted their three-game losing streak with a 121-109 win on the road over the San Antonio Spurs.

R.J. Barrett led the New York team, scoring with 32 points as six Knicks players finished in double digits.

The Knicks improved to 12-12 with the win to remain just outside the Eastern Conference playoff places in 11th.