Russell Westbrook banked a 3-pointer at the end of regulation to send the game into overtime. His performance propelled the Los Angeles Lakers to a 128-123 overtime victory over the Toronto Raptors. Westbrook delivered a triple-double, 22 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists in the victory. 

With 0.4 seconds in the fourth quarter, Westbrook put up a contested 3-pointer tying the game and sending it into overtime.

“Big-time IQ right there on his part,” LeBron James said postgame of Westbrook’s game-tying moment. “A big-time shot by a big-time player.” LeBron James put up 36 points, nine rebounds and seven assists as his scorching scoring season continues. 

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The Lakers needed this win badly to stem the tide on what has been a deeply disappointing season. They currently sit in ninth place in the Western Conference, 10 games below .500. 

The Raptors who were on a five-game winning streak, remain in seventh place in the Eastern Conference.

What this victory means for the Lakers

Considering how poorly the Lakers have been performing, this was a much-needed win. The fact that it came in overtime raises questions about the Lakers’ inability to close games in regular time. LeBron continues to score at the highest level but the rest of his teammates have let him down so far. That has been a contributing factor to their losses. It is difficult to say that this win represents a turning point but it is definitely a step forward. Up till now, it has been for them to win games. Luckily, Anthony Davis is expected to return in the next two weeks and his presence will be vital as the Lakers navigate the play-in games.