Lakers move up to No. 8 seed following fourth straight win

Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
The Lakers have won nine of 10 and are just a 1/2 game back of the No. 7 seed.

LOS ANGELES — D’Angelo Russell poured in a game-high 28 points and the host Los Angeles Lakers used a 19-0, third-quarter run to pull away for a 116-97 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Saturday afternoon.

Cleveland (46-32) crept out to a 73-69 lead following a pair of Evan Mobley free throws with 5:42 left in the third.

But it was all Los Angeles from there (45-33), with Anthony Davis supplying nine points during the decisive run that provided the Lakers with an 88-73 cushion. Georges Niang stopped the bleeding with a trey with 1:09 left in the frame, but Los Angeles took a 90-78 lead into the final quarter.

The Cavaliers trailed by at least 10 for the entirety of the fourth.

LeBron James (24 points, 12 assists) and Davis (22 points, 13 rebounds) had double-doubles for Los Angeles, which won for the ninth time in its past 10 games. Taurean Prince chipped in 18 points.

Darius Garland paced Cleveland with 26 points. Caris LeVert supplied 21 to go along with seven boards, and Jarrett Allen finished with 12 points and 12 rebounds. Niang also had 12 points.

After going into intermission trailing by nine, Cleveland took less than four minutes to draw even, as Garland’s 3-pointer tied things at 67-all with 8:39 to go in the third quarter.

A 6-0 spurt later gave the Cavaliers their four-point lead that was erased by the Lakers’ overwhelming surge.

Russell scored 10 points and James added nine as Los Angeles jumped out to a 36-33 edge after the opening 12 minutes.

Prince then canned a pair of 3-pointers and converted a layup as part of a 15-2 rally that lifted the Lakers to a 51-35 lead with 9:11 left in the second quarter.

Los Angeles was up by 14 following a Russell triple with 4:20 remaining in the period, but Cleveland answered with the next nine points to pull within 61-56. However, James and Davis each scored inside to send the Lakers into the break with a 65-56 advantage.