Lakers blow out shorthanded Atlanta Hawks, 136-105

The Lakers got a much-needed win after pretty much dominating the Hawks.

LOS ANGELES — The Lakers had lost two in a row going into Monday night. The cure to these losses? What about a shorthanded Atlanta Hawks (no Trae Young) team that just played the night before? And the Lakers (with Anthony Davis playing!) were able to take advantage as they won going away, 136-105.

The game actually got off to an inauspicious start for the Lakers. The first score of the game? Jalen Johnson throwing one down on poor Austin Reaves. In fact, the Hawks got off to an 11-2 start and it was very much looking like their first match-up last January early on.

Then both stars got going. Anthony Davis took control of the paint. LeBron James was scoring all over the place. And it was really fun to see Max Christie got it going. After that said 11-2 deficit, the Lakers went on a 30-11 run on their own.

The Hawks were able to cut the deficit down to 45-41. For a while, L.A. had trouble getting in front of Jalen Johnson. Then the Lakers went on yet another avalanche. This 16-4 run included a steal from Austin Reaves and then a juicy dime to the LeBron train.

A Spencer Dinwiddie corner three gave the Lakers 73 points in the half before the Hawks cut the lead down with free throws. The Lakers were up by 14 on the break (you can do the math on how many Atlanta scored in the first half, right?).

Then from there, Rui Hachimura got the Lakers started in the second half and they didn’t let up. The Hawks looked ragged and just weren’t moving a lot defensively. They’re fatigued and shorthanded but the Lakers didn’t (and shouldn’t) feel sorry for them. They took advantage and all other teams should, too. With that said, D’Angelo Russell closed the third quarter with back-to-back threes. The Lakers were up, 111-86, going into the fourth and I don’t think I need to summarize the fourth quarter for you fine folks.

The Lakers needed and got the W. Practically outdid them in every major category. The good thing, too, is that they played clean (8 turnovers!). Hardly any complaints about this other than the usual second chance points. Oh, and not being able to stop Jalen Johnson early. Not much to say other than a good win.

L.A. had 6 players in double figures (all starters and Max Christie!). It was good to see D’Angelo Russell get it going; he led with 27 points. LeBron finished with 25-7-10 while Anthony Davis went for 22-15-6. Also, Russell made 6 threes, which ties him for most threes in a season for the Lakers franchise. Nick Van Exel and Russell each have 183. With 13 games still to go, Russell should own that spot by himself by Friday. I think.

Atlanta was led by Jalen Johnson as he scored 25 points and grabbed 9 boards. He did get hurt late in the game so I hope he’s all right. Bogdan Bogdanovic had 17 points while Dejounte Murray was limited to 13 points (he did have 10 assists, though).

Now the Lakers get to rest for a bit as their next game isn’t until Friday against the Sixers. Hopefully, it gets Jarred Vanderbilt, Gabe Vincent, and Cam Reddish closer to their returns.

But for now, a somewhat nice 37-32 slate after 69 games.