LOS ANGELES, California — Paul George scored 37 points ( 4 rebounds, 4 steals) to lead the Olkahoma City Thunder to a 107-100 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers on Wednesday night at the Staples Center.
PG 13, who was greeted with boos from the crowd — partially over his decision not to return home and play for the Lakers in free agency — prepared himself for the moment — letting his play do the talking.
“I’m not the only guy from SoCal, the LA area, that didn’t decide to play here,” George said. “You can go down the whole list of guys from this beautiful city. It is what it is. The decision has been made. No ill will.”
The Thunder improved to 24-13, as six players including George reached double digits in the scoring column.
Russell Westbrook had 14 points, 16 rebounds and 10 assists — recording his 115th career triple-double. The Thunder will square off against the Portland Trail Blazers on Friday.
Express yourself PG! @Yg_Trece with the 😡🔨.
— OKC THUNDER (@okcthunder) 3 januari 2019
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope scored 18 of his 25 points in the first half for the Lakers. Brandon Ingram added 17 points and JaVale McGee contributed 15 points, 8 rebounds and 4 blocks.
“I thought the effort and competitive level was top-notch for us,” Lakers coach Luke Walton said. “We were getting good looks. We just weren’t making them.”
The Lakers 21-17, were without Lebron James (groin injury), veteran point guard Rajon Rondo and Michael Beasley who missed his 13th consecutive game. They will host the ailing New York Knicks on Friday.
Photo Credit: Getty Images