NBA -- Brawl mars Lakers home opener
By Celso Samson Jr.
Mon, 22 Oct 2018
LOS ANGELES -- A melee interrupted what had otherwise been an exciting match-up between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Houston Rockets on Saturday night at the jampacked Staples Center.
The fight, which saw fists flying between LA's Rajon Rondo and Houston's Chris Paul, erupted in the 4:13 mark of the fourth quarter with the Rockets nursing a 109-108 lead. When the smoke cleared and multiple player ejections later, the Rockets eventually prevailed, 124-115.
James Harden led all scorers with 36 for Houston while Paul, who was thrown out of the game, added 28 markers and 10 assists. Clint Capela contributed 19 and 12 boards as the Rockets out-rebounded LA, 54-44. Gerald Green added 13 off the bench.
The Rockets made only 44 of 96 field goals but they converted 16 of 42 treys to help fuel their high-octane offense.
LeBron James had a relatively quiet debut as a Los Angeles Laker, finishing with 24 points, five rebounds and five assists as the purple-and-gold franchise fell to 0-2 following a narrow loss to the Portland Trail Blazers on Wednesday night. The Rockets, meanwhile, rebounded from their 131-119 home loss to the Pelicans two nights before.
Rajon Rondo, who was similarly ejected, had 13 points and 10 assists for L.A. and JaVale McGee, who won a ring with the Golden State Warriors last season, tallied 16 and six rebounds.
The NBA has yet to impose sanctions against those involved in the fight. A ruling is expected to come out anytime soon.
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