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Davis carves NBA niche


LOS ANGELES (AFP) — Anthony Davis delivered a sensational game on the eve of his 31st birthday Sunday, scoring 27 points with 25 rebounds in the Los Angeles Lakers’ 120-109 National Basketball Association victory over Western Conference high-fliers Minnesota.

Davis added five assists, a career-high seven steals and three blocked shots for the Lakers, who are locked in a battle for a play-in berth.

The Timberwolves came into the game second in the West and slipped to third, one and a half games behind conference leaders Oklahoma City.

The Thunder thumped the Memphis Grizzlies 124-93 in Oklahoma City. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander scored 23 points and rookie Cason Wallace added 23 off the bench for the Thunder, who won their third straight.

There was some bad news for Oklahoma City, however, as Jalen Williams exited in the second quarter with a sprained right ankle.

The injury news looked even worse for the Houston Rockets, who rallied from a 13-point deficit to beat the Kings 112-104 in Sacramento.

But they saw their leading scorer Alperen Sengun leave the court in a wheelchair after he fell awkwardly while challenging Domantas Sabonis under the basket in the final minute.

Rockets coach Ime Udoka said that Sengun was having X-rays on his right knee and the star center reportedly was scheduled for an MRI exam on his right knee and ankle on Monday.

Turkey’s Sengun is averaging a career-high 21.2 points and 9.4 rebounds per game.

“You hate to see that, especially so late in the game,” Udoka said. “It doesn’t diminish the win in general. I think it was one of our best road wins. (Sengun) had a huge part in that.”

In Los Angeles, Davis and the Lakers took advantage of a depleted Timberwolves lineup. Four key absentees included Karl-Anthony Towns — sidelined indefinitely after knee surgery — and center Rudy Gobert, who sat out with a tight hamstring.


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