Los Angeles Lakers stars LeBron James and Anthony Davis immediately embraced Lonnie Walker IV after defeating the Golden State Warriors in Game 4 of the Western Conference semifinals Monday night at Crypto.com Arena.
James, 38, placed his forehead on Walker and likely credited him for the Lakers coming out on top by a three-point margin.
During his postgame interview with Chris Haynes, James was eager to speak about Walker, who put up 15 crucial points in 27 minutes off the bench.
“It’s not even about tonight,” James said. “I’ve been telling him, I said, ‘Lonnie, stay ready. We’re going to need you at some point.’ And for him to be as young as he is, for him to have that professionalism, come out, stay ready when his number is called. We don’t win this game without Lonnie Walker tonight, that’s for sure.”
Walker, 24, was a starter early in the season and fell out of the rotation after the All-Star break. He only played 14 minutes in the entire first-round series against the Memphis Grizzlies.
Lonnie Walker IV stays ready
Walker stayed ready to lead the Lakers to victory when he was need despite getting DNP (Coach’s Decision) time and time again.
He scored 12 points in 24 minutes off the bench during LA’s Game 3 win, but it was in a 30-point blowout. Most of his scoring happened during garbage time.
Game 4, however, was nip-and-tuck the entire way through. Walker’s scoring was during crucial moments of the game, proving he can perform well under pressure.
The former San Antonio Spurs player also added three rebounds, two assists and two steals. One of those boards was in crunch time while the Lakers protected a one possession lead.
Game 5 is back at Chase Center on Wednesday and all eyes will be on Walker to repeat his performance, this time on the road.
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