LeBron and the Lakers’ play-in survival story was like a horror movie

When the main character is in crisis, the villain kills time. The protagonist revives as a knight. However, the main character also hesitates and cannot finish the situation, and the villain raises his head again. It was a game where it was impossible to know who was the main character or the villain until the very last moment. It was like watching a thriller movie, but the last 10 minutes were like a horror movie where the suffocating situation was repeated over and over again.

The Los Angeles Lakers laughed after a fierce battle in the 2022-2023 NBA Play-In Tournament Western Conference 7th seed match.

And NBA President Adam Silver, who added a play-in tournament system to the existing playoff system from 2020 and led another great fight, also laughed.

The Lakers won 108-102 in the 7th seed match against the Minnesota Timberwolves held in Los Angeles, USA on the 12th (Korean time).

It was a confrontation between the teams that placed 7th (Lakers) and 8th (Minnesota) in the Western Conference in the regular league. Here, the winning team would go to the playoffs as the 7th seed, and the losing team would compete for the final 8th seed with the winner of the 9th (New Orleans Pelicans)-10th (Oklahoma City Thunder).

The tournament nature of the match was fierce as expected. It wasn’t that he didn’t concentrate well throughout the game. From the last 5 minutes of the 4th quarter to the 5th minute of overtime, it seemed like they were giving and receiving mistakes rather than scoring points. It was a really grueling match.

One thriller was unusual from the trailer. On the last day of the regular season in Minnesota, a series of bad news broke out. Starting forward Jayden McDaniels lost his temper and suffered a fracture after punching a wall. All-Star defensive center Rudy Gobaer punched his teammate Kyle Anderson after getting into an altercation. As a result, he was handed a one-game suspension.

Still, Minnesota drove the Lakers, led by LeBron James and Anthony Davis, to the brink of defeat. Karl-Anthony Towns dominated the court and veteran point guard Mike Conley provided support fire from the perimeter. The score gap widened to 15 points at one time.

However, things changed rapidly when Towns committed a fifth foul early in the fourth quarter.

Minnesota led 95-90 5 minutes before the end of the 4th quarter, but there was an element of anxiety about leaving the court if Towns committed just one more foul. As Towns faltered, the team faltered. Minnesota failed to make a single field goal in the last six minutes of the fourth quarter. Scored only with free throws.

It was a golden opportunity for the Lakers. But the Lakers were also anxious. The 3-point shot continued to ignore the rim, and a pass miss occurred during the inbound pass process. Still, the Lakers succeeded in a 98-95 comeback with James’ 3-pointer and Dennis Schroeder’s 3-pointer 1.4 seconds before the end.

But the match didn’t end there. With 0.1 second left in the fourth quarter, Conley’s 3-point shot missed the rim, but Davis was overly motivated and committed a foul. Director Davin Hamm was distressed as he wrapped his hands in his head. Conley made all three free throws with amazing concentration and took the game into overtime.

The Lakers took a 105-100 lead. As Minnesota fixer Anthony Edwards continued to hunt for shots, Kyle Anderson’s screen foul came out. Then, at the Lakers, Rui Hachimura committed a screen foul.

Minnesota narrowed the score gap to 3 points with Edwards’ breakthrough. 19 seconds remaining. Minnesota had no choice but to foul play. 안전놀이터

But LeBron’s inbound pass didn’t go to his teammate. Conley intercepted the pass with exquisite positioning. Conley’s sense shined and James’ pass was too complacent. Conley quickly moved to the offensive court and created an open 3-point opportunity for Prince. However, when this shot was misfired, it was virtually a win or loss.

LeBron, a 20-year-old professional, played on the court for 45 minutes, scoring 30 points, 10 rebounds and 6 assists. He committed 5 errors and made a giddy mistake at the end of the game, but still contributed to the victory by producing decisive points and assists. The scene where he assisted Schroeder’s 3-point shot at the end of the 4th quarter was the highlight.

Davis played 43 minutes and recorded 24 points, 15 rebounds and 3 blocks. He suddenly appeared in front of the camera during a post-game broadcast interview with LeBron and Schroeder, apologizing to the fans for a foul 0.1 second before the fourth quarter. The players laughed and the reporter laughed too.

Minnesota showed an amazing fighting spirit despite all kinds of bad news. All of the starting players played for more than 40 minutes, starting with Anderson, who played for 45 minutes. Towns struggled with 24 points and 11 rebounds, and Conley showed off his veteran ability by scoring 23 points, including six 3-pointers.

However, Minnesota’s troubleshooter Edwards only managed 3 out of 17 Yatoo attempts and only scored 9 points. He missed all nine of his 3-pointers. Throughout the game, he boasted outstanding skills and concentration in defense, but kept his head down as he could not wake up from the attack until the end.

The Lakers, who have confirmed their playoff berth, will face the Memphis Grizzlies, the second seed in the Western Conference, in the first round.

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