LeBron hits 40 in Lakers win; Doncic has 47 as Mavs beat Rockets

Agence France-Presse
LeBron hits 40 in Lakers win; Doncic has 47 as Mavs beat Rockets
LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers dunks the ball against the Brooklyn Nets at Barclays Center on March 31, 2024 in New York City.
Mike Stobe / Getty Images / AFP

NEW YORK – LeBron James delivered another epic performance on Sunday (Monday Manila time), scoring 40 points and matching a career-high with nine 3-pointers on 10 attempts as the Los Angeles Lakers rolled to a 116-104 victory against the Brooklyn Nets.

James, a four-time NBA Most Valuable Player and the NBA's oldest active player at 39, made 13-of-17 shots from the floor overall and added seven rebounds and five assists in an effort that had Brooklyn fans giving him a standing ovation.

"I was feeling pretty good today, obviously, shooting the ball from the perimeter," James said. "I just try to continually put my game where I have no weaknesses out on the floor, especially offensively. Tonight I had it going from the 3-point line."

James achieved his 77th NBA career 40-point game to match Oscar Robertson for seventh on an all-time list topped by Wilt Chamberlain's 271.

"I love this game. I try to put everything into the game and with it, it gives back to me," James said.

"Anytime I'm linked with the greats — and obviously Big O was a big inspiration for me growing up, reading about his history — it's pretty cool."

Anthony Davis added 24 points and 14 rebounds while Japan's Rui Hachimura had 20 points and 10 rebounds as the Lakers seized a 17-0 lead and never looked back.

D'Angelo Russell scored 18 points and cracked the 10,000 career point barrier in the triumph as the Lakers improved to 42-33, just ahead of Golden State in the last two Western Conference play-in spots.

"Just extremely thankful that he packed the cape on this road trip," Lakers coach Darvin Ham said of the super-heroic display by James.

"We needed all nine of those threes. (We) kind of dropped the rope in terms of what we were doing... turned the ball over way too much, but that said, you have to just overcome these things... And we were able to do that by some huge shot-making by him."

James wasn't the only superstar with nine 3-pointers Sunday.

Luka Doncic scored 47 points on 18-of-30 shooting, 9-of-16 from 3-point range, to lead Dallas over host Houston 125-107, snapping the Rockets' 11-game win streak and stretching the Mavericks' win streak to seven games.

Golden State kept pace with the Lakers by winning 117-113 at San Antonio. Stephen Curry scored 33 points to lead the Warriors while rookie Victor Wembanyama led the hosts with 32 points.

Jokic has triple-double

Nikola Jokic posted his 23rd triple-double of the season, sparking defending champion Denver's 130-101 home victory over Cleveland.

The 29-year-old Serbian center, a two-time NBA MVP, scored 26 points, grabbed 18 rebounds and added 16 assists for his 128th NBA triple double.

"It speaks to why he's going to be a three-time MVP," Nuggets coach Michael Malone said. "(It was) him showing up and saying, 'I'm going to do what MVPs do. I'm going to lead us to a win.'"

The Nuggets sank a season-high 21 3-point shots and clinched a playoff berth.

"We came out and really showed who we are, just getting after it defensively, rebounding, making shots. I thought we played amazing basketball," said Nuggets guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, who scored 22 points.

Denver hit 50-of-87 from the floor overall (57.5%) and 21-of-33 (63.6%) from 3-point range while outrebounding the Cavaliers 51-28.

The Nuggets improved to 52-23, a half-game behind leader Oklahoma City in a three-team fight for the West lead.

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander sank the last of his 19 points on a game-winning basket with 2.1 seconds remaining to give Oklahoma City a 113-112 victory at New York.

Jalen Williams led the Thunder with 33 points while Jalen Brunson, who missed a shot at the final buzzer, led New York with 30.

Minnesota fell a game out of first with a 109-101 home loss to Chicago. DeMar DeRozan scored 27 points for the Bulls, who snapped the Timberwolves' four-game win streak.

Paul George scored 41 points to lead the Los Angeles Clippers over host Charlotte, 130-118.

Kelly Oubre Jr. scored 32 points to lead Philadelphia over host Toronto, 135-120, extending the Raptors' losing skid to 13 games.

Terry Rozier netted 27 points to lead Miami's 119-107 victory at Washington.

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