Lue to meet with Lakers’ Walton about LeBron

UNTV News   •   July 9, 2018   •   2026

FILE PHOTO: Jun 22, 2016; Cleveland, OH, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James celebrates during the NBA championship parade in downtown Cleveland. Mandatory Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

Cleveland Cavaliers coach Tyronn Lue had a brief chat with Los Angeles Lakers coach Luke Walton during summer league action in Las Vegas on Saturday and plans to have dinner with him soon, according to the Los Angeles Times.

The topic of discussion? LeBron James, who jumped from the Cavaliers to the Lakers in free agency last week to sign a four-year, $154 million deal.

Lue will reportedly meet with Walton and Lakers assistant Brian Shaw to tell them what he knows about coaching James.

Apparently, it will be a short conversation.

“I’ll just tell them LeBron’s easy,” said Lue, per the Times. “People get this whole thing built up like he’s hard to coach. It’s not. LeBron’s not the problem. It’s the outside tension that’s the problem. Just put added pressure immediately on the coaches, on his teammates. Now everything you do is under a microscope. … So it’s going to be a totally different change for the Lakers. They’ll be able to handle it.

“LeBron is easy to play with, very unselfish. LeBron can bring guys along, make sure they’re doing the right thing. It’s going to be good. The outside is what you’ve gotta be able to block out.”

James, 33, is the latest — and one of the greatest — legends to play for the Lakers. He has averaged 27.2 points, 7.4 rebounds and 7.2 assists per game in 1,143 career contests.

This marks the first time James will play for a team in the hotly contested Western Conference, which includes heavyweights such as the Golden State Warriors and Houston Rockets. James spent his first seven seasons with the Cleveland Cavaliers, his next four seasons with the Miami Heat, and his last four seasons back at home with Cleveland.

Shortly after James’ decision was announced, the Lakers landed free agent swingman Lance Stephenson for one year and $4.5 million, free agent point guard Rajon Rondo for one year and $9 million and they re-signed guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope to a one-year, $12 million deal. The Lakers also agreed with free agent center JaVale McGee on a one-year, league-minimum contract.

The Cavaliers had hoped to re-sign James, who has appeared in eight consecutive NBA Finals. The Philadelphia 76ers reportedly also had strong interest in the 6-foot-8, 250-pound superstar who entered the league directly out of St. Vincent-St. Mary High School in Akron, Ohio.

—Field Level Media

Magic topple Lakers again

UNTV News   •   November 26, 2018

FILE PHOTO: LeBron James (REUTERS / USA-Today)

Nikola Vucevic scored 31 points and grabbed 15 rebounds Sunday as the visiting Orlando Magic upended the Los Angeles Lakers for the second time in eight days, earning a 108-104 victory.

The Lakers tied the game at 104 with 2:24 remaining on a pair of free throws by LeBron James, but Los Angeles missed four 3-point attempts down the stretch.

Terrence Ross made a cutting layup with 34 seconds remaining to give the Magic a 106-104 lead, and Aaron Gordon sealed the victory on a dunk with 10 seconds remaining.

Gordon finished with 17 points, while Ross had 16 as Orlando ended a two-game slide. The Magic now have four victories in their past six games.

James scored 24 points for the Lakers, who have seven victories in their last nine games, but both of those defeats came to the Magic.

After losing 130-117 at Orlando, the Lakers made a commitment to defense, holding their next three opponents to an average of 95 points per game. That defensive focus was evident early in the Sunday game as the Lakers held Orlando to 19 points in the first quarter.

The Magic, though, turned things around, starting with a 12-2 run with just under three minutes to play in the first half. Orlando held its first lead of the game at 51-49 with less than a minute to play in the second quarter before a James 3-pointer put the Lakers up 52-51 at the half.

The Magic’s surge continued in the third quarter as they opened on a 15-7 run, forcing the Lakers into eight consecutive missed shots during the stretch. Orlando held an 86-71 lead after three quarters, having limited the Lakers to 19 points in the period.

Vucevic’s 31-point performance came after he scored a season-high 36 points the first time the teams met. Two of his three games with at least 30 points this season have come against the Lakers.

D.J. Augustin scored 12 points and had nine assists for the Magic, while Jonathon Simmons added 10 points.

Kyle Kuzma scored 21 points for the Lakers, while Brandon Ingram added 17. Lakers point guard Lonzo Ball scored nine points and pulled down 10 rebounds.

—Field Level Media

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Lakers boast .500 record after win over Kings

UNTV News   •   November 12, 2018

The Lakers’ LeBron James speaks during a news conference on Monday in El Segundo, California. | USA TODAY / VIA REUTERS

The Los Angeles Lakers have a .500 record for the first time this season after a 101-86 win against the host Sacramento Kings on Saturday night.

LeBron James scored 25 points for Los Angeles, which has won four of five and six of nine. The Lakers have another winnable game Sunday against the visiting Atlanta Hawks.

Brandon Ingram had 12 points and eight rebounds, and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Josh Hart and Kyle Kuzma scored 11 apiece for the Lakers. Tyson Chandler had a team-high 12 rebounds off the bench in his second game since joining the Lakers.

De’Aaron Fox scored 21 points to lead Sacramento. Marvin Bagley III had 13 points off the bench and Willie Cauley-Stein had 12 points and 12 rebounds for the Kings, who had won six of eight coming in.

Kuzma made a 3-pointer on the first possession of the second half to extend the lead to 53-44. Los Angeles missed its next seven shots, including three open 3-point attempts on one possession, which would have extended the lead back to double digits.

At the same time, the Kings went on a 7-0 run to get within 53-51 and they pulled as close as one point on two occasions before Lakers backup point guard Rajon Rondo capped a 10-0 run by hitting a wide-open 3-pointer for a 67-56 lead with 3:50 left in the third quarter.

The Lakers took a 76-65 lead into the fourth and Lance Stephenson sank a 3-pointer off a loose ball on the first possession, extending the lead back to 14. They soon went up by 20 on Josh Hart’s 3 with 8:01 left and maintained a double-digit lead the rest of the way.

The Lakers led by 16 midway through the second quarter before taking a 50-44 lead into the half.

James led the way with 15 points in the first half for the Lakers.

—Field Level Media

Chandler set to join Lakers after buyout

UNTV News   •   November 5, 2018

Oct 31, 2018; Phoenix, AZ, USA; San Antonio Spurs guard Patty Mills (left) drives to the basket against Phoenix Suns center Tyson Chandler in the second half at Talking Stick Resort Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

 

Los Angeles native Tyson Chandler is on the verge of signing a contract with the Lakers.

After a contract buyout freed Chandler from the final year of his contract with the Phoenix Suns, he targeted his hometown team.

“We love the fact that we’re going to get another veteran,” Lakers star LeBron James said Saturday night. “A guy who plays hard, a guy who’s very smart and another champion to add to the champions that we have in this system here today, and it adds depth in our frontcourt, which we have had trouble with at times.”

Chandler, 36, is in his 18th season, and was slated to make $13.6 million this season in the final campaign of a four-year contract with Phoenix.

The 7-foot-1 Chandler averaged 3.7 points and 5.6 rebounds in seven games for the Suns this season.

Chandler has career averages of 8.6 points and 9.3 rebounds in 1,086 games with the Chicago Bulls (2001-06), New Orleans Hornets (2006-09), Charlotte Bobcats (2009-10), Dallas Mavericks (2010-11, 2014-15) New York Knicks (2011-14) and Suns (2015-18).

He was the NBA Defensive Player of the Year for the 2011-12 season and played in the All-Star Game the following season.

—Field Level Media

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