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Lakers suffer fifth straight loss despite LeBron James' 39 points vs Nets

The Los Angeles Lakers (16-18) dropped a fifth consecutive game as they failed to complete a fourth quarter comeback against the Brooklyn Nets (22-9) on Christmas Day at Crypto.com Arena.

LeBron James ended the night with 39 points, 9 rebounds and 7 assists, but it was not enough for the Lake Show to avoid staying below .500, currently in eighth place of the Western Conference standings. Russell Westbrook recorded a triple-double with 13 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists, but only scored four of his 20 shot attempts from the floor.

The King opened the score with a layup on a night that saw him pass Kobe Bryant as the player with most points on Christmas in NBA history, but Lakers would not regain the lead until the third quarter. Heading into the second half, Nets led by four points, losing the lead for a moment before stretching it out to 20 points to start the final stanza.

What seemed like an insurmountable lead would soon get trimmed down to leave the scoreboard even, but Lakers were unable to capitalize down the stretch.

Patty Mills steps up in Kevin Durant's absence

James Harden returned to play after missing four games in health and safet protocols, where Kevin Durant remains. Harden was expected to lead Brooklyn in scoring on his return, and he did just that with 36 points, adding 10 rebounds and 10 assists to complete a triple-double.

Patty Mills stepped up with 34 points in 36 minutes, scoring eight of 13 shots from beyond the arc, and 11 of 17 from the field. Mills was three assists shy of a double-double while contributing on the defensive end with two boards and one steal.

Fourth quarter comeback

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