Lakers look to seize 3-1 lead over Grizzlies
The Lakers host the Grizzles in Game 4 in Los Angeles with a chance to take a 3-1 series lead. LA set the tone early in Game 3, taking a 35-9 first quarter lead.
Memphis had runs throughout the game but could not cut the lead down to single digits.
Dillon Brooks declined an interview request. “I ain’t talking,” he told me.— Tim MacMahon (@espn_macmahon) April 23, 2023
Grizzlies forward Dillon Brooks was ejected in Game 3 after a flagrant two foul on a hit to LeBron James’ groin. Brooks declined to comment after the game. A few days before, Brooks trash-talked James in his postgame interview after the Grizzlies won in Game 2.
James and Anthony Davis led the way in this game, putting up dominant performances. James finished with 25 points, nine rebounds, and five assists, shooting 10-20 from the floor. Davis had 31 points, 17 rebounds, two steals, and three blocks.
LEBRON PUT BACK JAM 🤯 pic.twitter.com/Ap9Oe4p0Gm— Lakers All Day Everyday (@LADEig) April 23, 2023
The superstar duo needed to come out and play well, and they did exactly that. D’Angelo Russell put up a solid performance with 17 points and seven assists. Russell has not had a great playoff run thus far, and getting better production from him will go a long way.
Rui Hachimura has been a consistent plus off the bench for the Lakers. Hachimura had 16 points in Game 3 and provided quality minutes for LA.
For Memphis, Game 3 marked the return of Ja Morant after a one-game absence due to a right-hand injury he suffered at the end of Game 1. The injury seemed to affect him early with some turnovers, but that didn’t stop him from taking over.
"That boy is good...when great players get it going, there's nothing you can do."— Ballislife.com (@Ballislife) April 23, 2023
LeBron on Ja Morant scoring 22 STRAIGHT POINTS in the 4th quarter. Ja finished with 45 PTS, 13 AST, 9 REB, 6 3PT in the loss. pic.twitter.com/yopyXU5tNe
Morant had 45 points, nine rebounds, and 13 assists, shooting 13-26 and 6-10 from three. Morant was on fire in the 4th quarter, but the Lakers didn’t let anyone else get going.
Darvin Ham and the coaching staff need to come up with a better gameplan for containing Morant so he doesn’t have another explosive performance.
Morant is a star, and he is hard to stop. However, you can contain him and make him take tough shots. It will slow him down if the Lakers can force him into tough shots.
James and the LakeShow need to set the tone early once again. If they can come out with energy and intensity, it will go a long way in taking a 3-1 lead over the Grizzlies before heading back to Memphis for Game 5.