Lakers PG Rondo breaks hand in win over Trail Blazers

Tanya Simon
November 15, 2018

It was a historic night for James as he passed Wilt Chamberlain for fifth on the all-time National Basketball Association scoring list midway through the fourth quarter with 39 points.

James finished the game with 44 points - the first Lakers player to surpass the 40-point mark since D'Angelo Russell in 2017 - and almost had a triple-double on the night with nine assists and 10 rebounds. "I just have to continue being patient". His most impressive game yet for the Lakers included a bit of history when he passed Wilt Chamberlain on the NBA's career scoring list.

He made all eight of his fourth-quarter free throws, including the two from the flagrant foul on Portland's C.J. McCollum. These weren't the most creative plays nor shots born out of elegant players, but for a young player who has struggled to carve out his own corner of the Lakers' offense, it was a generally effective night with greater impact - 17 points and four assists, without a turnover.

He had 26 points and his season high of 12 rebounds in a 128-119 loss at Portland in the season opener on October 18. The Blazers spoiled LeBron's debut with the Lakers in a 128-119 win at Portland last month, but the Lakers replied by ending their 16-game skid in the rivalry by beating the Blazers 114-110 just 16 days later in the Moda Center.

But the kid from Akron will never let it get to his head.

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Before the Lakers embark on a three-game trip that includes his return to Cleveland on November 21, James showed his new home fans what they can expect in big moments - as if any basketball fan with a pulse didn't already know.

The Magic went on a 21-0 run in the fourth quarter to wipe out a 16-point deficit, before Terrence Ross had a tie-breaking three-pointer in the final seconds to lift the side to a 111-106 win.

"Anytime my name is mentioned with some of the greats to play this game, I always think back to my hometown, where I come from, how far I've come", James said. "A lot of soft defense". They are keen to change that and hence the signing of James during the summer, and the addition of veterans such as Rajon Rondo, Lance Stephenson and most recently Tyson Chandler.

Lakers coach Luke Walton told reporters after the game that Rondo had broken his hand, and that he would be out "a few weeks".

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