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Davis' 32 lead Pelicans over Lakers

The SportsXchange

NEW ORLEANS -- Forward Anthony Davis scored 32 points, including an 11-point fourth quarter, while grabbing 12 rebounds for his fourth double-double in six games to power the New Orleans Pelicans to a 96-85 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers on Friday night at the New Orleans Arena.

With New Orleans clinging to a 76-74 lead with 6:26 left, Davis took a feed from guard Tyreke Evans and slammed it home past forward Jordan Hill.

After guard Steve Blake missed a long-range jumper, Davis outraced forward Pau Gasol down court and took an alley-oop feed from guard Jrue Holiday for another dunk and an 80-74 lead.

When Los Angeles cut the deficit to 84-81 with 3:29 left, the Pelicans ran off 11 consecutive points, with Davis accounting for seven.

The victory evened the Pelicans' record at 3-3 and gave them their first regular-season win over the Lakers following 11 consecutive losses dating back to 2010. Davis also had six blocks and had Gasol changing his shot the entire night.

Guard Eric Gordon added 16 points and center Jason Smith had 14 for New Orleans. The Lakers (3-4) were led by center Chris Kaman with 16 and by forward Nick Young and Blake with 13 each.

The Lakers used an 11-2 run -- with seven points coming on three jumpers by Young -- to take a 59-57 lead, but they scored only five points in the final 5:26 of the quarter as New Orleans regained a 69-66 edge after three quarters. When guard Anthony Morrow connected on a 3-pointer from the right corner to start the fourth quarter, the Pelicans led 72-66.

Davis was so dominant early that he had a double-doubles secured with 4:40 left in the second quarter when he grabbed a rebound of a Kaman miss. That gave him his 10th rebound of the night to go with 13 points.

Leading 40-39, the Pelicans closed out the second quarter with a 15-9 spurt to take a 55-48 halftime lead. Davis was in the middle of the surge, blocking a layup attempt by Gasol and then sprinting down court for an easy layup on the other end after Gasol argued the no-foul call and was left in the dust.

The Pelicans scored the final six points of the half on mid-range jumpers by Holiday, Smith and Gordon.

NOTES: Lakers PG Steve Nash, 39, sat out the game to rest on the second night of a back-to-back. ... NBA commissioner David Stern, who will retire in February, was in New Orleans Friday to tour the Pelicans' $15 million practice facility -- located on the New Orleans Saints' campus -- and he got the thanks of Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal for keeping the franchise in New Orleans when it looked like a relocation might have been a possibility. "I was the instrument of the league that felt the pain of New Orleans after Katrina, and we were determined to do our best and everything possible to make sure we were a part of what we knew would be the growth and the redemption of New Orleans -- and we did it," Stern said. "We are part of a team and delighted to be here to say thank you for making the NBA stronger." ... Pelicans F Ryan Anderson, who has missed the first six games with a broken toe, is getting close to returning. "I've got to hear from the doctor that he's not going to hurt himself by playing," coach Monty Williams said. ... Pelicans F Anthony Davis was the first player with at least 15 points and three blocks in each of the first five games since Hakeem Olajuwon and David Robinson did it in 1992-93. "He's a lot better now," Lakers coach Mike D'Antoni said of the 2012 Olympian he helped coach. "He's just a great feel for the game. He's very athletic. He's a great kid. I'm sure he's great to coach. He was good in college. He came out and I remember Jim Boeheim saying, 'This guy is really good -- defensively, blocking shots, running the floor, great kid, everything you want. And he's just getting better every year, getting stronger, and just learning the game a little better."
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