BSJ Game Report: Lakers 129, Celtics 128 – Rondo caps comeback with buzzer-beater

(Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

Everything you need to know about the Lakers beating the Celtics 129-128 with BSJ insight and analysis

Box Score

Rondo hits game-winner in shootout: In his first game back at the TD Garden as a Laker, Rajon Rondo finished off a storybook ending for the former Celtic. The point guard corralled a loose ball with one second remaining and knocked down a mid-range jump shot to pull off the road win, capping off an 18-point rally for the Lakers. Rondo finished with a double-double (17 points, 10 assists), LeBron James added a triple-double (28 points, 12 rebounds, 12 assists) while Kyle Kuzma had a monster second half (21 points) to give the Lakers a much-needed win. Kyrie Irving had a team-high 24 points for the Celtics, who blew a six-point lead in the game’s final two minutes in the defeat as Boston had their five-game winning streak snapped.

Lakers set franchise record from downtown: The Celtics have been a top-5 team defending the 3-point line all year long but they let their guard down against Los Angeles, which allowed the Lakers to knock down a franchise-record 22 3-point attempts and shot a season-best 53.7 percent from 3-point range. That type of sharpshooting helped them overcome a miserable shooting night at the free throw line (7-of-18).

Celtics bench plays great before starters blow the game: The Celtics' reserves plus Jayson Tatum played the best basketball for the C’s all night, featuring elite performances from Daniel Theis (20 points), Jaylen Brown (18 points) and Terry Rozier (19 points). That entire group was responsible for building an early double-digit lead and got the Celtics back into the game in the fourth quarter after the Lakers came back against the C’s first unit. Brad Stevens went back to the starters down the stretch in a move that proved to be costly as their woeful defense couldn’t get the stops needed to win the game.