By Johnny Askounis/ email@example.com
The Los Angeles Clippers dropped an early 22-point lead but still topped the Los Angeles Lakers, 116-109, Tuesday evening. Paul George made 26 out of his game-high 33 points in the second half of the 2020-21 NBA Regular Season opening night contest.
In his Clippers debut, Serge Ibaka produced 15 points, six rebounds, and one block as the starting center. French Nicolas Batum also started for three points, six assists, six rebounds, and two steals. Croatian Ivica Zubac added 11 points, six rebounds, one assist, one steal, and one block off the bench. Kawhi Leonard had 26 points in the win replying to the brief pregame ring ceremony of the defending champions.
A couple of European starters for the Lakers as well. German Dennis Schroder posted a 14-point, 12-rebound double-double and also recorded eight assists. However, Marc Gasol did not attempt a shot in 12 minutes, was held to one rebound and one assist for the night. LeBron James ended up with a team-high 22 points.
Earlier, the Brooklyn Nets claimed the home win, 125-99, versus the Golden State Warriors in the first game of the 2020-21 season. Kevin Durant returning to action following the long injury layoff scored 22 points against his former team. Kyrie Irving went for 26 points and Caris LeVert punched in 20.
French Timothé Luwawu-Cabarrot made a five-point contribution and also grabbed two rebounds in seven minutes. Latvian Rodions Kurucs threw in three points and one rebound.
On the losing end, Stephen Curry registered a 20-point, 10-assist double-double. Serbian Alen Smailagic (knee) was ruled out for the opener. Two-way Nico Mannion was out as well.
Photo Credit: Los Angeles Clippers