Los Angeles Lakers coach Luke Walton for $15,000 for criticizing officiating

Lonzo Ball admits to not being'fully engaged in loss to Timberwolves

During the pre-game warm-ups before their duel with the Denver Nuggets, LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers was making it rain from downtown - right at Stephen Curry range.

"We could feel his anger", Lance Stephenson said afterward about Walton's message at the team's morning meeting on Wednesday, according to ESPN's Dave McMenamin. "But it feels good for us to know what we've been doing over training camp [and] in these first few games to continue to get better". We need to get better at that.

Without suspended starters Rajon Rondo and Brandon Ingram, the Lakers (2-3) won their second straight game with all five starters scoring in double figures.

It was the Lakers' second win in two days after struggling to a 0-3 start to the season.

Notes The Lakers scored 20 fast-break points, well below their season average, but still a robust number.

"[Stephenson's] tenacity, his competitive nature just kinda brought us back into that game", James said.

The Suns' Devin Booker had 23 points, seven rebounds and seven assists but left the game in the third quarter with a strained left hamstring. Deandre Ayton, the first draft pick this year, had 22 points and 11 rebounds. Wednesday night was the first of a three-game suspension for Rondo and a four-game suspension for Ingram.

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LeBron James had a triple-double in his first home win, but the four-time NBA Most Valuable Player gave props to tormentor-turned-teammate Lance Stephenson.

He provided stellar help defense on Denver's Nikola Jokic (24 points, 11 rebounds, six turnovers) while also guarding Jamal Murray (22 points, 10 rebounds) at times.

Jimmy Butler scored 23 points, Derrick Rose had 16 and Taj Gibson 13 for Minnesota.

Suns: Booker fell two points shy of becoming the first Suns player to score 25 points or more in the first four games of a season since Charlie Scott in 1972-73. Harden scored a team-high 29. The Ukrainian guard scored his first National Basketball Association points one night earlier in Phoenix.

Bazemore delivered a clutch monster dunk with just over a minute to go and Trae Young contributed 17 points in the win.

It's still early in the season, but the Suns are averaging the second-most passes per game (through October 23) after passing the ball better than just eight teams a year ago.

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