Kyle Kuzma achieved a career-best 41 points as the Los Angeles Lakers hit the Detroit Pistons with a 113-100 win on Wednesday night at their home court.
In the third quarter alone, the second-year guard scored 22 points after hitting four three-pointers and putting together two scoring runs of 10 and six points, respectively.
The Lakers rode on Kuzma’s scoring spree and got a 12-point lead by the end of the third quarter, which the Pistons failed to rise above as they didn’t even get the gap down to single digit in the last period.
Kuzma’s scoring extravaganza saw him join a select list of players who have scored more than 40 points in three quarters this season.
Along with Kuzma’s teammate LeBron James, Golden State Warriors duo Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, and reigning MVP of Houston Rockets James Harden are the only other players to have managed the feat this season.
With LeBron still out with a groin injury, the Lakers bench played a significant role in supporting Kuzma, with three players scoring a combined 45 points.
For the Pistons, Blake Griffin finished with 16 points and six assists, an offensive contribution way off the career-high 25.3 points he has been averaging this season. Andre Drummond was dominant at both ends of the court with 17 rebounds but only scored six points.
The Lakers have gone 3-5 since LeBron got injured on Christmas Day against the Warriors, but have now won the last two consecutive games to improve to 23-19 and strengthen their grip on the last playoff berth in the Western Conference standings.
Due to the nature of the conference this season, the 16-time NBA champions are closer to being the fourth seed in the West than they are to falling out of the playoff picture altogether.
About the Author
Suposh Sharma, keenly follows Hockey, Athletics, and other Olympic sports. He also has a penchant for writing humour and is an avid traveller