On Monday night, the Los Angeles Lakers picked up a big-time win over the Memphis Grizzlies in Game 4. It was a closely-contested game that came down to the final moments when the Lakers were able to send the game to overtime, where they would eventually win.
But while most will remember LeBron James’ clutch layup, Anthony Davis’ big-time block, and the pairs’ string of shot-making in overtime, Jarred Vanderbilt played a huge role, too. After the game, head coach Darvin Ham showed love to Vanderbilt.
“We need that,” Ham said when discussing D’Angelo Russell’s clutch threes. “Just like we needed Vando’s energy early. Vando knocked down a couple of corner threes. His presence. His activity on Ja. It’s obviously not an easy matchup by any stretch of the imagination.”
Vanderbilt took the Morant matchup head-on. He spent 4:08 guarding Morant, which was the second-most of any Lakers player. The only player who guarded Morant for more game time was Dennis Schroder, who was matched up against the Grizzlies star for 6:11.
By the end of the night, Vanderbilt had accrued quite an impressive statline. For a guy that doesn’t usually put up great stats, he did in game 4. He finished the game with 15 points, six rebounds, one assist, and three blocks. Vanderbilt shot 6-of-9 from the field and 2-of-5 from behind the three-point line.
As for Morant, he still put up decent stats, but the Lakers made it hard on him. He dropped 19 points, four rebounds, seven assists, three steals, and one block. Morant shot 8-of-24 from the floor and 1-of-6 from three-point land.
Anthony Davis Credits Lakers Teammates
Meanwhile, after the game, Davis had a lot to say about his teammates. He dished out a ton of credit for James, Russell, and some other players for their huge nights in the Lakers victory.
“We got that chemistry,” Davis said via the NBA Interviews YouTube channel. “Obviously, it was a performance for me tonight on the offensive end. He [James] just took over down the stretch. Got us a bucket to go into overtime. D-Lo [Russell] with two huge threes to get us back in the game. To cut it to one. Dennis [Schroder] playing through his pain. Austin [Reaves], Rui [Hachimura], all our guys, man. It was a good team effort. This team is not going to go away. It was a must-win game for us, and we played well down the stretch and just covered for one another.”
Lakers’ Jarred Vanderbilt Praises LeBron James
In addition, Vanderbilt had some strong praise for James, preaching about how impressive his performance was in Game 4.
“Man, it’s just a testament to who he is and what he’s about,” Vanderbilt said of James. “He’s about winning and he did whatever he needed to do to win tonight and that was rebounding, getting 20 boards or getting the block or even a last-second box-out. He took two charges on Ja Morant. Those are just winning plays, and when your leader is kind of doing that, everybody just kind of follow suit and he set the tone for that. So it was great.”