The feverish Lakers forget Doncic: victory in Denver and 18-3

The Angels, who had several players with flu-like symptoms, forget the defeat at the Staples against the Mavs with a great game against the Nuggets.


The tour of away matches for the Lakers began in the best possible way. The Angels, who face a hard month of December, forgot about the defeat at the Staples against the Doncic Mavericks and imposed themselves on one of the most complicated tracks of the competition, that of the Nuggets, to sign their 18th victory the season and match the Bucks as a team with the best record in the NBA. A victory of great merit if we take into account the criticism that the team received for its bad game against Dallas, the rival he faced ... and the flu invasion that struck the squad.

According to various American media up to six players were affected by the fever. The most serious of them was Anthony Davis, support of the attack team and, above all, in defense and that was doubt until the last moment having to be punctured at rest. It was not bad for the former Pelicans, who despite his health problems set an impressive game and finished with 25 points and 10 rebounds, his ninth double-dobe of the season and the third in a row. But beyond the figures, the role in defense of the angel is being fundamental to his. He protected the hoop, annulled Jokic (13 + 5 + 8 for the Serbian but with a poor 4 of 12 in shots and a -6 with him on the track) and was decisive in the final minutes. Some are already starting to speculate on a possible Best Defender award at the end of the season.

The beginning of the crash was a mirage. A triple of Millsap (21 points and 8 rebounds, the best of his own) and a tray of Barton (5 + 6 + 4) gave a 5-0 advantage that caused a lot of noise in an audience that started very involved in the game but that was diluted with the passing of the minutes. Caldwell-Pope (today more off in attack but well in defense) made with a shot in suspension the first two points for visitors, who from there woke up from his brief lethargy (lasted a minute) and put the batteries to Demonstrate what they are capable of.

Spurred by LeBron (25 + 6 + 9) and Davis, the Lakers took the initiative and handcuffed the Nuggets during the first half, of which they left with 11 advantage (49-60). The rapid transitions and rebounds, unlike the Mavs, were dominated by the Angels, who scored 22 points to the counterattack (by 6 of their rivals) and caught 56 rebounds (by 35). The team coach by Frank Vogel, who challenged his team to fight harder to protect the ring after the game against Dallas, dominated the paint (52 points for 44) and became the owner of the boards, which tipped the scales in his favor . That and the role of the mayor, who in the first 24 minutes was personified in a Rondo that responded to criticism for his poor performance against Doncic and company with very dignified numbers (11 + 6 + 6), +8 with him in track, 4 of 6 in field shots and 2 of 2 in triples. His departure at the end of the first period gave air to his teammates, who found more spaces in attack and made the ball circulation work better. If you pay more attention to the defense, the base may end up being essential in the Vogel scheme.

Things changed in the second half. The Nuggets, which had the participation of Juancho Hernangómez (4 points and 2 rebounds in 12 minutes) left the break with the batteries charged and tied the game thanks to a favorable partial of 15-2. The Lakers again rowed to go ahead (84-76) with 12 minutes left and knew how to keep a cool head to enter with advantage to the final phase of the duel thanks to the collective game and the good work of LeBron and Howard, who finished with 13 + 6, large numbers after lowering the level in the last duels. There the locals had their options, which were placed at three (95-92) with less than four minutes to play before Rondo gave peace to the purple and gold with a good shot in suspension. Already at the last minute, a great defense of Davis over Murray (22 + 5 + 5) in a very protested play kept the Lakers with 6 difference (96-102), an advantage that increased to the final 96-105.

With this result, the Lakers forget Doncic and add their 18th victory of the season. They have not yet lost two consecutive games and have won in Denver, a track that last season registered the best record in the competition. Something positive if we consider that now they visit the always tough Jazz and Blazers in recovery but have not been able to with the Clippers. The best thing for angels is that they have achieved all this and it seems that they have not yet reached their full potential. They lack Bradley, someone essential in the Vogel scheme and must continue to improve if they want to start playing really well. It's the best for them because, without all that, they are the best team in the NBA (along with the Bucks). Almost nothing.



Photos from as.com
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