Michael Dwyer/Associated Press
The Lakers used a 16-0 run that extended to the middle of the fourth quarter to pull away in a back-and-forth contest, then staved off a Hawks advance to come away with the victory.
Anthony Davis posted 25 points to lead the Lakers, who improved to 16-6 with the win.
For the 10-10 Hawks, Trae Young posted as many while collecting 16 assists.
- Anthony Davis, Lakers: 25 PTS (10-14 FG, 0-2 3PT)
- LeBron James, Lakers: 21 PTS (5-12 FG, 2-6 3PT), 9 AST, 7 REB
- John Collins, Hawks: 22 PTS (10-17 FG, 2-5 3PT), 7 REB
- Trae Young, Hawks: 25 PTS (7-15 FG, 1-4 3PT), 16 AST, 4 REB
Lakers Offense Breaks Open
At the end of a lengthy road trip, the Lakers’ offense has quieted. They came into Monday’s game having scored under 100 points in back-to-back games for the first time this season, which came as Anthony Davis missed a 107-92 loss to the Detroit Pistons and returned to face one of the league’s top defenses in a 96-95 win over the Boston Celtics.
Throughout the quiet stretch, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope has been affected, failing to tally double-digit points in four of the past six games.
Boston ranks 10th in the league in defensive efficiency, but the Hawks didn’t look to be any easier to close out the road trip, with a 108.4 efficiency that ranks No. 9 in the league (h/t Mike Trudell of Lakers.com)
In terms of individual scoring, the first half was all Davis and Montrezl Harrell, both of whom posted 12 points on perfect shooting between the first two quarters.
Caldwell-Pope found his edge, tallying eight points through two.
While the Lakers hit 52.8 percent of field goals to Atlanta’s 43.2 percentage in the first half, the Hawks were especially efficient in stopping L.A. from outside. The Lakers hit two of their 11 attempts from deep for a 18.2 three-point percentage in the first half.
Caldwell-Pope finally broke the double-digit threshold, ending the night with 11 points, but it was Davis who paced the offense with 25 points.
James was held scoreless in the first half thanks to standout defense from Cam Reddish, but he came alive for 21 points after the break.
Trae Young’s Strong Second Half
Young entered Monday’s game off a record-setting performance on Friday. The 22-year-old tallied his 400th three-pointer as collected 41 points against the Washington Wizards. becoming the fastest player to 400 threes, doing so in 159 games. Damian Lillard held the previous record at 163.
In his last five games, Young has scored fewer than 38 points just once, when he posted 28 points against the Brooklyn Nets.
His presence was even more important on Monday since the team’s second-leading scorer, De’Andre Hunter, is sidelined while he recovers from a non-surgical procedure he had on his knee over the weekend.
The Lakers were prepared for Young’s impressive performance beyond the arc, limiting him to 0-for-2 from three in the first half while allowing him to tack on just seven points to the Hawks’ first-half tally, though he led all players with six assists.
Instead, it was John Collins (13 points) that led the charge for an Atlanta offense in a back-and-forth start that saw nine lead changes in the first two frames.
Another lead change came late in the third quarter as the Hawks took over with 2:50 left, almost poetically on a trio of free throws from Young, who came alive in the frame with 11 points.
He ended the night with 25 points on 7-of-15 shooting, and it took until the final minute for him to sink his only free throw.
After seven road games dating back to Jan. 20, the Lakers are headed home for a matchup with the Denver Nuggets on Thursday at 10 p.m. ET.
The Hawks host the Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. ET.