Los Angeles Lakers

By The Numbers: Veteran Lakers flex their muscles over young, rebuilding Rockets

The final game of the Halloween weekend, in Los Angeles, was quite the entertainer. It was a treat for the veteran Lakers squad while not so much for the inexperienced Rockets.

Alley-oops, those signature highlight-reel dunks by LeBron James, coast-to-coast plays by Russell Westbrook, the hosts at STAPLES Center had a blast.

The final scoreline of 95-85 doesn't rightfully illustrate the domination of the Lakers. With this victory, during which they led by as many as 28 points, the 17-time NBA champions climbed above .500 for the first time in the 2021-22 season.

Here are some mind-boggling numbers from this game, that illustrate the one-sided nature of the contest

16.7 - Melo season average

Yes, seven games is a small sample size but Carmelo Anthony has been more than impressive for the Lakers in this young season so far. And it's not like he's got these points at the latter half of blowouts.

His points average is the highest since he was traded from the New York Knicks which was just prior to the start of the 2017-18 season. Having scored 16 or more in four of the seven games, his contribution has played a key role in leading the team to victories. In fact, the Lakers are 4-1 in these five games.

That's not all. He's providing the Lakers with these eruptions off the bench with incredible efficiency - 50.0 percent from the field and 52.2% percent from beyond the arc - both career-highs.

In this game, he was responsible for five of the team's nine turnovers.

6 - Anthony's stocks

I'm calling stocks a combination of steals and blocks. Melo finished this Rockets game with 23 points in 25 minutes but what stood out from his box score was his four blocks and two steals.

The career-high tying four blocks are part of a defensive stat line that the 37-year-old hadn't recorded in nearly 18 years.

23 - Rockets turnovers through 3 quarters

The Rockets outscored the Lakers 31-20 in the fourth period, which resulted in the relatively short margin of defeat. However, through three quarters, things didn't go their way.

In fact, after 36 minutes, they had more turnovers (23) than field goals (20).

At the final buzzer, Houston finished with 25 turnovers which led to 32 points for the Lakers.

2 - Vintage thunderous LeBron dunks

Year 19...

25 - Westbrook's plus-minus

A lot has been said about Russell Westbrook's fit with the Lakers and going by the first few games, the chatter was well deserved.

Other than his game-winning effort in San Antonio, the former MVP has had to answer for his turnovers or his plus-minus numbers. In this game, Westbrook seemed to be in mid-season form.

Finishing with a near triple-double of 20 points, nine assists and eight rebounds, Westbrook registered a season-low two turnovers and a season-high plus-minus of +25. Just for some perspective, his previous best plus-minus was +4 and his season average for turnovers coming into this game was 5.7.

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