In a game with 17 lead changes and 15 ties, the stars showed up for each team but the Los Angeles Lakers held on and defeated their arch-rivals 96-95.
For the Celtics, Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown combined for 58 points on 25-of-37 shooting from the field while Anthony Davis (27 points, 14 rebounds, two assists, and two steals) and LeBron James (21 points, seven rebounds, seven assists) came up huge for the Lakers.
Here are the biggest takeaways from the entertaining back-and-forth battle in Boston:
Kemba Walker's rough game
The 4-time All-Star had one of the roughest shooting games of his career. In fact, his 1-of-12 shooting from the field was the second-worst shooting game of his career, when attempting at least 10 shots.
One of his 11 misses in this game was the potential game-winner in the final seconds.
👀 the BEST PLAYS down the stretch from the Lakers/Celtics thriller! pic.twitter.com/4qAj6TLwey- NBA (@NBA) January 31, 2021
"I thought I had a good look, but I struggled all game shooting the ball," Walker said postgame. "I would have loved to make some shots tonight. It was a struggle obviously. I just got keep working, find myself a little bit."
"I liked the shot that we got. Kemba's a great player," Jaylen Brown said postgame on Walker's final shot. "That's a shot he's usually gonna make. We're gonna need him. He knows that for us to go far, we need him."
Walker finished with four points, six rebounds, and four assists in 28 minutes as his forgettable head-to-head record against LeBron slumped to 1-25.
LeBron James rises on all-time wins list
The victory was LeBron James' 854th of his regular-season career, moving him up to eighth all-time.
With this victory, @KingJames passes Lakers great Derek Fisher for 8th on the NBA's all-time wins list. #NBAAllStar pic.twitter.com/ZHg66GaFEJ- Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) January 31, 2021
By the slimmest of margins, James beat out Fisher to reach the tally. James took 1286 games while Fisher had recorded his total of 853 in 1287 games.
AD, Lakers still remember 32-pt loss from last year
"One of our most memorable games of last year," Davis said postgame talking about the Lakers' 32-point loss (139-107) last year in Boston. "We still replay those moments in our head."
"We for damn sure wasn't losing three in a row." - Anthony Davis- ESPN (@espn) January 31, 2021
The Lakers avenge their 32-point loss last year in TD Garden. pic.twitter.com/wxzCjbzSCy
Jayson Tatum with the play of the game!
Jaylen Brown has been on-fire to start this season and he continued that form in this game.
He scored nine of the team's first 11 points to start the second half and combined with Tatum to score or assist on 37 of the team's 46 points in the second half.
Brown finished the game scoring 28 on 13-of-19 shooting from the field while Tatum had one of his best game of the season, scoring 30 on 12-of-18 shooting from the field while also recording nine rebounds, three assists, and two steals.
The Lakers came away with the win but Tatum, easily, had the best play of the game
PLAY OF THE YEAR!!!@jaytatum0 #NBAAllStar pic.twitter.com/ye79y3VPDH- Marc D'Amico (@Marc_DAmico) January 31, 2021
Marcus Smart injury update
Early in the fourth quarter, with 10:28 left, Marcus Smart exited the game with a left leg injury. Postgame, head coach Brad Steven confirmed that Smart suffered a left calf strain.
Brad Stevens: "Marcus Smart has a calf strain. We'll know more tomorrow after an MRI."- Keith Smith (@KeithSmithNBA) January 31, 2021
When he left the game, the 6-3 guard had four points and seven assists through 26 minutes.
Lakers' bench mob
LA's bench scoring ranks among the top 10 in the league. In this one, they scored 39 points on 16-of-28 (57.1%) shooting from the field.
Led by Montrezl Harrell's 16 points (8-10 FGs), the Lakers' second unit outscored their counterparts by 24.
pic.twitter.com/3XlOttUfxD- Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) January 31, 2021
The Lakers improve to 4-2 on this road trip, one that they'll wrap in a couple of days in Atlanta. On the other hand, the Celtics, who dropped their fifth in the last seven games, now head off to the West Coast for a five-game road trip.
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