LeBron James logs 22-20 game, Lakers take 3-1 lead on Grizzlies

April 25 (UPI) -- LeBron James scored 22 points and snagged a career playoff-high 20 rebounds to lead the Los Angeles Lakers past the Memphis Grizzlies in Game 4 of their first-round NBA playoff series. The Lakers now lead the series 3-1.

James, who dished out seven assists, made several clutch shots in regulation and overtime in the 117-111 win Monday at Arena in Los Angeles. Lakers center Antony Davis chipped in 12 points, 11 rebounds and four blocks. Guard Austin Reaves scored a team-high 23 points in the win.


"I was just trying to be as great as I can be offensively, but more importantly on the defensive end," James told reporters. "That was the mindset.

"I was able to make a couple plays to help us be successful."


The Lakers bench outscored the Grizzlies bench 28-19. The Lakers, who are now just one win away from claiming the best-of-seven game series, led by as many as 15 points. Game 4 featured eight lead changes and was tied eight times.

"The close-out game is always the hardest game of the series," James said. "It's the most tiring one, the most brutal one and we better be ready for it. I think we will be ready for it."

The Grizzlies scored the first six points of the game. The Lakers responded with an 8-0 run, outscored the Grizzlies 15-5 over the final four minutes of the quarter and carried a 29-23 lead into the second.

Guard Desmond Bane scored 11 points over the next 12 minutes and the Grizzlies outscored the Lakers 29-25 in the second. The Lakers still carried a 54-52 edge into the break.

The Grizzlies went on a 9-1 run to take a 71-67 lead midway through the third. They led 83-81 to start the fourth.

The fourth quarter featured four lead changes. Forward Jaron Jackson Jr. gave the Grizzlies an 85-84 edge with 10:04 remaining in regulation. They held onto the lead until the Lakers took a 99-97 edge on a D'Angelo Russell 3-pointer with 3:55 to go.


Bane, who scored 14 in the fourth, tied the score on the next possession. Davis went on to make a free throw for another brief Lakers lead before Bane sank two from the foul line to give the edge back to the Grizzlies.

Reaves tied the score 102-102 with 43.5 remaining. Bane answered with a layup, giving the Grizzlies a 104-102 lead with 6.7 seconds remaining. James then attacked the rim, laying the ball high off the backboard and through the net to force overtime.

Grizzlies guard Ja Morant attempted a jump shot on the final possession of regulation, but Davis blocked the shot.

Davis and James each scored to start the overtime period. Morant hit a jump shot to cut the lead to two, but Davis followed with a free throw to push the advantage to three.

Grizzlies forward Dillon Brooks dunked with 1:22 remaining in overtime. Davis and James responded with two unanswered layups to give the Lakers a five-point edge. Lakers guard Denis Schroder made two free throws about 16 seconds later to add cushion to the Lakers lead.

Bane scored a game-high 36 points in the loss. Morant netted 19 points for the Grizzlies. Jackson logged 14 points, 14 rebounds and five blocks in the loss.


Game 5 will tip off at 7:30 p.m. EDT Wednesday in Memphis.

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