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Lakers top Spurs for 1st road victory in James' return

Michael Gonzales / National Basketball Association / Getty

SAN ANTONIO (AP) — LeBron James scored 21 points in his return from a five-game absence, Anthony Davis had 25 points and 15 rebounds and the Los Angeles Lakers beat the San Antonio Spurs 105-94 on Friday night for their first road victory of the season.

James wasted no time returning to form following a strained left adductor, hitting a 16-foot jumper 17 seconds in for the game’s first points. James was 8 for 17 from the field and had eight rebounds and five assists.

Davis, who averaged 31.8 points and 17.4 rebounds during James’ absence, was five points shy of his fifth straight 30/15 game.

San Antonio lost its seventh straight, the second-longest losing streak in the NBA this season. The Spurs have lost 13 of 14 after a 5-2 start.

The teams will meet again in San Antonio on Saturday night.

Tre Jones had 19 points for San Antonio. Devin Vassell added 18 and Keldon Johnson had 15.

Lonnie Walker IV had 18 points in his return to San Antonio after signing with the Lakers in the offseason.

Walker, who was 4 for 9 on 3-pointers, turned to the Spurs’ bench, shaking his head and shrugging his shoulders after a 3-pointer that gave the Lakers a 51-37 advantage.

San Antonio opened the game 2 for 19 on 3-pointers, finishing a season-low 6 for 33.

With James and Davis sitting, San Antonio closed the third quarter on an 11-2 run in cutting Los Angeles’ lead to 79-74. James led an 11-0 run after the Spurs closed to 81-78.


Lakers: Los Angeles coach Darvin Ham initially said James’ status was uncertain 1 1/2 hours prior to tipoff. Twenty minutes later, the Lakers officially cleared the four-time MVP to play. … Davis was listed as probable with lower back tightness. … Juan Toscano-Anderson returned after suffering mid-back soreness. … Walker was honored with a video highlighting his four seasons in San Antonio after pre-game introductions. Walker and Spurs coach Gregg Popovich embraced and spoke prior to tip-off.

Spurs: San Antonio’s current skid equals the seven-straight losses Detroit suffered from Nov. 9 to Nov. 20. Charlotte has the longest streak, dropping eight straight from Oct. 31 through Nov. 12. … C Zach Collins returned after missing 10 games with a non-displaced head fracture of the left fibula. In nine games this season, Collins is averaging 8.3 points, 4.7 rebounds and 2.8 assists in 17.7 minutes. … F Doug McDermott sat out after suffering a sprained left ankle in Monday’s home loss against New Orleans. … G Josh Richardson missed his second straight game with a sore right ankle.

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