Post Up: Nik Stauskas, Dame Lillard Spoil LeBron James’ Lakers Debut

by October 19, 2018

Lakers 119 (0-1), Trail Blazers 128 (1-0)

LeBron James didn’t take long to leave a strong first impression on Lakers fans, immediately throwing down back-to-back dunks to open the night in Portland; however, strong shooting nights from Damian Lillard (28 points), CJ McCollum (21) and Nik Stauskas (24) proved to be too much for Los Angeles to overcome as it missed its first 15 3’s en route to 7-for-30 performance for the night. Zach Collins stifled the Lakers’ offense at the rim, too, recording a career-high six blocks.

A Lonzo Ball 3-pointer with 8:07 to go in the fourth quarter cut the deficit to one, but that was as close as the Lakers would get for the rest of the night as the Trail Blazers stretched their lead to as high as 13 points in the final period.

James was strong in his debut, racking up 26 points, 12 rebounds and six assists. Rajon Rondo added 13 points and 11 dimes while Josh Hart had 20 points on 8-for-12 shooting to go with three steals off the pine.

76ers 127 (1-1), Bulls 108 (0-1)

After a rocky start against Boston on opening night, Philadelphia got back on track in front of its home crowd as Ben Simmons stuffed the stat sheet with 13 points, 13 rebounds and 11 assists. Joel Embiid led all scorers with 30 points and added 12 rebounds.

Markelle Fultz earned the start at point guard again, and although he shot only 5-for-15 from the field, he showed off his range and newfound shooting confidence in a pull-up 3 made over Zach LaVine — the first 3 of his NBA career — much to the delight of the home fans.

LaVine led the Bulls with 30 points on 11-for-19 shooting from the field. Jabari Parker added 15 points off the pine in his first game playing for his hometown squad.

Heat 113 (1-0), Wizards 112 (0-1)

John Wall clocked out with a phenomenal all-around performance after amassing 26 points, nine rebounds, a steals and three blocks, but Kelly Olynyk‘s putback with 0.2 seconds to go spoiled the Wiz Kids’ home opener.

Dwyane Wade had nine points, eight rebounds, four assists and two steals off the bench in what’ll be the final season opener of his career. Josh Richardson scored a game-high 28 for the Heat.