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Lakers thrash Grizzlies, wrap up series in Game 6

Apr 28, 2023; Los Angeles, California, USA;Los Angeles Lakers forward Anthony Davis (3) is defended by Memphis Grizzlies forward Xavier Tillman (2) and forward Jaren Jackson Jr. (13) as he goes up for a shot in the first quarter of game six of the 2023 NBA playoffs at Crypto.com Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

D’Angelo Russell scored a playoff-career-best 31 points on 12-of-17 shooting and the Los Angeles Lakers punched their ticket into the Western Conference semifinals with a 125-85 trouncing of the visiting Memphis Grizzlies on Friday in Game 6 of their series.

LeBron James scored 22 points for the Lakers, who won four of the six games of the first-round matchup. Anthony Davis added 16 points, 14 rebounds and five blocked shots for seventh-seeded Los Angeles, which ambushed the second-seeded Grizzlies in spectacular fashion.

The Lakers, who shot 53.8 percent from the field, will play either the Sacramento Kings or Golden State Warriors in the conference semis. Those teams play Game 7 of their series on Sunday.

Santi Aldama scored 16 points off the bench, Desmond Bane had 15 points and Jaren Jackson Jr. added 14 for Memphis. Ja Morant and Dillon Brooks had 10 points apiece for the Grizzlies.

Memphis’ Luke Kennard missed the contest due to a left shoulder injury that occurred in Game 5.

The Grizzlies shot a woeful 30.2 percent from the field. Morant (3 of 16), Bane (5 of 16), Jackson (3 of 12) and Brooks (4 of 11) all shot poorly. The team finished 12 of 38 (31.6 percent) from behind the arc.

The Lakers were 15 of 44 (34.1 percent) from 3-point range with Russell making five and Jarred Vanderbilt draining three. Austin Reaves contributed 11 points, eight assists and six rebounds for Los Angeles.

The Lakers led by 17 at halftime and displayed there would be no letdown with a 9-0 burst early in the third quarter. Russell made two 3-pointers and Vanderbilt hit one during the run to make it 68-45 with 10:22 left in the period.

Three-plus minutes later, Vanderbilt and Russell hit consecutive treys to push the lead to 80-49. James hit a 3-pointer to make it 100-64 with 27.1 seconds left in the third before he and Davis sat out the fourth quarter. The Lakers led 100-67 entering the final period.

James scored 16 points and Russell added 14 as the Lakers shot 59.5 percent from the field in the first half while taking a 59-42 lead.

–Field Level Media

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