‘Angry’ LA Lakers hold on to beat Toronto Raptors

Los Angeles Lakers had seven players in double figures in a 110-101 win over the Toronto Raptors yesterday morning (Singapore time), as the NBA champions recovered from an embarrassing weekend drubbing by the LA Clippers.

The Lakers opened up a 34-point lead in the second quarter, following the ejections of OG Anunoby and Montrezl Harrell after a scuffle late in the first quarter. The Raptors cut the lead to 20 points after three quarters and came as close as nine points late in the fourth.

Talen Horton-Tucker led the scoring for Lakers off the bench with 17 points in just over 25 minutes at the Amalie Arena, as the champions bounced back from their humiliating 104-86 rout by the Clippers last Sunday.

"We got embarrassed on Sunday against the Clippers," Lakers coach Frank Vogel said.

"We were all on a long flight angry about how that game went. Our mindset was to take it out on the Raptors and we did, thanks to great ball movement, and an angry, nasty defensive disposition."

Markieff Morris added 15 points and grabbed nine rebounds for the Lakers, who had lost their 11 previous games with the Raptors.

Elsewhere, Joel Embiid scored 35 points as the Philadelphia 76ers returned to top spot in the Eastern Conference with a 106-96 victory over the Boston Celtics. - AFP, REUTERS