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LeBron’s 47 points on thirty eighth birthday spark Lakers to NBA win

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LeBron James celebrated his thirty eighth birthday by scoring a season-high 47 points, grabbing 10 rebounds and adding nine assists to spark the Los Angeles Lakers to a 130-121 victory in Atlanta on Friday.

It was his first 40-point effort of the season, the second achieved in a birthday contest and the seventieth 40-point performance of his spectacular 20-season NBA profession.

Much more amazing, teammates were congratulating him for saying before the sport he would deliver a 40-point birthday beatdown against the Hawks.

“I called it,” James said. “I told them before the sport. I needed to make it occur. After starting 1-for-5 I didn’t know if it was going to occur.”

James, playing his third game in 4 nights, actually began shooting 1-for-6 but finished 18-of-27 from the ground, 4-of-6 from 3-point range, and 7-of-9 from the free throw line.

“I didn’t even understand it was three in 4 nights. I just knew I needed to get my mind and body able to go,” James said. “Ensure my body stays fresh but my mind more importantly.”

James became only the fourth player in NBA history to attain 45 points in a game at age 38 or older, joining Michael Jordan, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Jamal Crawford.

The Hawks, powered by 29 points from Trae Young, led by as many as 15 points in the primary half before James rallied the Lakers, scoring 16 points within the second and fourth quarters and 13 within the third.

The one birthday contest through which James scored more points was when he got 48 against Atlanta in 2009.

James, just one assist shy of the NBA’s first birthday triple double, is on pace to overtake Abdul-Jabbar and turn out to be the NBA’s all-time scoring leader in February.

The Lakers (15-21) were without star big man Anthony Davis, out with a foot injury.

Having his wife, mother and plenty of other relatives and friends watching helped encourage James.

“It is a treat,” James said. “To have them here and support me on the road, on my birthday, may be very essential to me because they’re the rock of all the things I do, my mom and my wife and my family.”

The night’s best 1-2 punch got here at Latest Orleans, where the Pelicans got 42 points from C.J. McCollum and 36 by Zion Williamson to beat Philadelphia 127-116 for his or her fifth consecutive victory.

McCollum hit 13-of-20 from the ground, including a record 11 3-pointers on 16 shots from beyond the arc, while Williamson netted 13-of-19 shots from the ground.

Joel Embiid scored 37 in a losing cause with James Harden adding 20 points and 10 assists for the 76ers (20-14).

The Pelicans improved to 23-12 to maintain a share of the Western Conference lead with Denver, which outlasted visiting Miami 124-119.

Serbian center Nikola Jokic had a triple double with 19 points, 12 rebounds and 12 assists to spark Denver, which had eight double-digit scorers. Tyler Herro led Miami with 26 points.

Jordan Poole scored 41 points, Klay Thompson added 31 and the defending NBA champion Golden State Warriors closed the sport on a 16-2 run to beat visiting Portland 118-112.

The Warriors stretched their win streak without injured Stephen Curry to 4 games while Damian Lillard scored 34 points to pace Portland.

 

– Giannis, LaVine hit 43 –

 

Greek star forward Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 43 points and grabbed 20 rebounds to guide the Milwaukee Bucks over visiting Minnesota 123-114.

The Bucks snapped a four-game losing streak while the Timberwolves saw their losing slide stretch to 5 games.

Zach LaVine scored 43 points on 15-of-20 shooting to spark Chicago’s 132-118 home victory over NBA doormat Detroit.

At Sacramento, Kevin Huerter scored 30 points, including a game-winning 3-pointer with nine seconds to play, to provide the host Kings a 126-125 victory over Utah.

Gary Trent Jr. scored 35 points to guide Toronto over Phoenix 113-104, the Raptors snapping a five-game home losing streak.

Latvian forward Kristaps Porzingis had game-highs of 30 points and 13 rebounds to guide Washington’s 119-100 triumph at Orlando.

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