Anthony Davis scored 35 points with 17 rebounds against his former team and Malik Beasley added 24 points as the visiting Los Angeles Lakers turned a 75-point first half into a 123-108 victory Tuesday over the New Orleans Pelicans.
D'Angelo Russell scored 17 points and Austin Reaves added 14 as the Lakers won for the eighth time in their last 11 games while moving into a playoff spot in the Western Conference during the run.
Los Angeles also improved to 5-3 since star LeBron James departed with a tendon injury in his right foot.
Brandon Ingram scored 22 points for the Pelicans against his former team. Davis and Ingram were key components in a trade between the teams before the 2020 season. Ingram returned after missing the past two games with an ankle injury.
Herbert Jones and Trey Murphy III added 20 points each for the Pelicans, who fell to 3-8 since a road loss to the Lakers on Feb. 15. CJ McCollum, who leads New Orleans with 21.2 points per game, was held to 13.
The Lakers and Pelicans entered with identical 33-35 records as both attempt to land a postseason spot in the West.
The Lakers bolted out to a 39-24 lead after one quarter and were up 75-40 at halftime following their highest scoring half of the season. Los Angeles shot 56.5 percent in the first half and led by as many as 36 points, while New Orleans was at 28.6 percent.
The Lakers made 15 of their 27 attempts (55.6 percent) from 3-point range in the first two quarters. It was the most made 3-pointers in a half in franchise history, with Beasley making seven of them.
Seemingly done for the night, Davis returned to the floor for the Lakers with 9:41 remaining after the Pelicans cut the deficit to 100-81. New Orleans pulled within 107-94 with five minutes remaining before Los Angeles finished off the victory.
New Orleans guard Jose Alvarado missed his seventh consecutive game with a stress reaction in his right leg.
--Field Level Media