NBA

LeBron scores 47-point near triple-double on 38th birthday, Giannis powers Bucks past Wolves

By Sports Desk December 30, 2022

LeBron James celebrated his 38th birthday with 47 points in a near triple-double as the Los Angeles Lakers downed the Atlanta Hawks 130-121 on Friday.

James scored 47 points on 18-of-27 shooting from the field with 10 rebounds and nine assists, showing the four-time NBA MVP is evergreen.

The 18-time All-Star scored 16 points in both the second and fourth quarters on his way to a season-high points haul.

The Lakers rallied back from a 15-point deficit before getting the edge in a tight fourth quarter, with James' three-pointer giving them a 103-101 lead which they never surrendered.

James iced the game with a pair of free-throws amid chants of "MVP! MVP!" from the State Farm Arena crowd, who appeared to be willing to switch allegiance for the star on his birthday.

Thomas Bryant scored 19 points with a  season-high 17 rebounds, while Russell Westbrook added 14 points and 11 assists off the bench.

Trae Young returned from a calf contusion for the Hawks to top score with 29 points and eight assists, while Dejounte Murray contributed 20 points, seven rebounds and nine assists.

The result improves the Lakers to a 15-21 record, having lost nine of their past 13 games entering the game. The Hawks fell to 17-19 having lost their past three.

Giannis drops another 40-point game

Giannis Antetokounmpo powered an almighty third-quarter comeback from the Milwaukee Bucks, who won 123-114 over the Minnesota Timberwolves, dropping 40 points for the fourth time in six games.

The Bucks trailed 61-50 at half-time, but won the third 39-22 led by Antetokounmpo, who finished the game with 43 points on 14-of-23 shooting with 20 rebounds, five assists and two blocks.

Milwaukee had good contributions off the bench from Bobby Portis with 22 points and 14 rebounds and Joe Ingles with 14 points and 10 assists. Anthony Edwards top scored for the Wolves with 30 points and 10 rebounds.

McCollum hits franchise-record 11 threes

C.J. McCollum scored a franchise-record 11 three-pointers on his way to 42 points as the New Orleans Pelicans downed the Philadelphia 76ers 127-116.

McCollum shot 11-of-16 from beyond the arc in a dazzling display, well supported by Zion Williamson with 36 points on 13-of-19 shooting with five rebounds.

Joel Embiid was strong for the 76ers with 37 points on 14-of-22 shooting with eight rebounds and five assists, while James Harden added 20 points including four triples and 10 assists.

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