Fresh off being named an NBA All-Star captain, LeBron James recorded his 10th triple-double of the season to power the Los Angeles Lakers to a 128-113 win over the Brooklyn Nets.
James finished with 27 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists, on 11-of-19 shooting and 3-of-6 from three, closing to within 17 points of Kobe Bryant for third-place on the NBA's all-time scoring list.
He can pass the Lakers legend on Saturday when they visit the Philadelphia 76ers. James has 33,626 career points, while Bryant has 33,643.
"To be linked with the greats, that means a lot to me," James said postgame of his rise up the scoring charts. "I grew up idolising Michael & Kobe, gaining inspiration from their crafts and their stories."
The Lakers knocked down a season-high 19 three-pointers in the win, blowing the game open across the end of the third quarter and early in the fourth with four-straight triples - none better than this one from Jared Dudley to end the third on a high note.
What a sequence to end the 3rd! 🚨@Lakers 107@BrooklynNets 96- NBA (@NBA) January 24, 2020
4Q underway on @NBAonTNT pic.twitter.com/bWVBtQIpWm
"Man it felt so good," Dudley said of the shot during his on-court interview postgame. "This is a beautiful year, a miracle year, and I wanted to hit a miracle shot."
Danny Green led the charge from beyond the arc, knocking down four 3-pointers on his way to 14 points, while Kyle Kuzma (16 points on 3-of-5 from deep), Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (11 points on 3-of-3), Jared Dudley (eight points on 2-of-3) and Alex Caruso (eight points on 2-of-2) all got in on the act from long-range.
Without big men DeAndre Jordan and Nicolas Claxton in the lineup, the Lakers put their size advantage to good use, dominating the glass as they outrebounded the Nets 52-41, with James, Dwight Howard and Anthony Davis doing the bulk of the damage.
David finished with 16 points and 11 rebounds, while Howard recorded 14 points and 12 rebounds on 7-of-10 shooting from the field.
Dwight Howard is on pace to finish with the 2nd highest FG% in a season ever (min 100 FGA).- StatMuse (@statmuse) January 24, 2020
72.7% - Wilt Chamberlain (1972-73)
72.2% - Dwight Howard (2019-20) pic.twitter.com/QJPqngfAJl
With the win, the Lakers remain undefeated in back-to-backs this season, with a 12-0 record.
The Lakers are now 12-0 in back-to-backs, including 4-0 on the second night of road B2B's. They're 36-9 overall and a league-best 20-4 on the road.- Mike Trudell (@LakersReporter) January 24, 2020
In what was billed as a matchup between two former teammates in James and Kyrie Irving, the Nets point guard finished with 20 points on 7-of-17 shooting and 3-of-6 from deep, adding four assists, three rebounds, and two steals - finshing a team-worst -26 on the night.
Kyrie Irving since Jan 15 (the night he said he needed more pieces)- StatMuse (@statmuse) January 24, 2020
36 FG% (19/53)
-61 +/- (lowest on team)
The Nets drop to 5-11 with him this season. pic.twitter.com/wvkwfKrosA
The Nets had four other players in double figures with Tauren Prince adding 18 points, Caris LeVert 16, Wilson Chandler 15 and Garret Temple 11, while Spencer Dinnwiddie recorded seven points, seven rebounds and 13 assists.
The Nets have now lost five games in a row and 12 of their last 14 as they drop to 18-25 on the season, while the Lakers remain top of the Western Conference at 36-9.