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NBA: LeBron James helps Los Angeles Lakers beat New Orleans Pelicans to reach play-offs

By BBC
Basketball GETTY IMAGESImage caption: LeBron James is a four-time NBA champion
WED, 17 APR 2024 LISTEN
GETTY IMAGES Image caption: LeBron James is a four-time NBA champion

LeBron James scored 23 points as the Los Angeles Lakers beat the New Orleans Pelicans 110-106 to reach the NBA play-offs.

James, 39, also chipped in with nine rebounds, nine assists and three steals to help the Lakers seal the seventh seed in the Western Conference.

The Lakers face defending champions the Denver Nuggets in the first round of the play-offs.

"We've got a good group going right now," James said.

"We understood after how we had played the last game that they were going to give us everything they had - the whole kitchen sink and the toolbox - and they did that.

"So it was a gritty win for us and we punched our ticket to the post-season."

James is set to feature in the play-offs for the 17th time in his 21-season career.

Meanwhile, the Sacramento Kings ended Golden State Warriors' hopes of appearing in the play-offs with a 118-94 win.

Stephen Curry top-scored for the Warriors with 22 points but Klay Thompson - who has averaged 17.9 points a game this season - failed to score in 32 minutes.

The Warriors have now missed out on the play-offs three times in the past five seasons.

Keegan Murray hit eight three-pointers and ended the match with 32 points and nine rebounds for the Kings, while De'Aaron Fox added 24 points.

The Kings meet the Pelicans on Saturday, with the winner securing the eighth seed and the final play-off spot in the West.

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