Los Angeles held the lead for much of the game after a back-and-forth start, and in the third quarter, they jumped to a 15-point lead after a 10-1 run to start the period.
The game could’ve went smoothly for the Lakers the rest of the way as they looked assertive with their size advantage, but the Suns showed resilience and came back in the fourth quarter, even reclaiming the lead during the final minutes.
But when the Lakers’ offense stalled during pivotal moments, they turned to James to lift them to victory.
The 18-year veteran helped close out Phoenix with some extremely tough baskets, en route to a 23-point performance that saw him make 9-of-16 (56.2 percent) of his shots, including a 4-of-9 (44 percent) clip from 3-point range.
Take a look at the clutch fadeaway and 3-pointer James made:
Los Angeles shot 45 percent from the field and 30.8 percent from 3-point range, which could’ve been better considering they missed several open looks, a similar takeaway from their Game 1 shooting display.
But if they can get the shooting woes out of their system, they’ll improve their odds of winning Games 3 and 4, both occurring in Staples Center.