Rajon Rondo recovered Brandon Ingram’s blocked shot and buried a buzzer-beating 20-footer Thursday night as the Los Angeles Lakers stunned the Boston Celtics 129-128 in a nationally televised game in Boston.
The game-winner capped a wild back-and-forth that began with back-to-back 3-pointers by the Lakers’ Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and LeBron James that erased a late six-point deficit and produced a 124-all tie with 50.1 seconds remaining.
The Celtics twice subsequently regained the lead, first on two free throws by Jayson Tatum with 34.7 seconds to go, then after a 3-pointer by Kyle Kuzma with 19 seconds to go, one final time at 128-127 on a short jumper by Kyrie Irving with 11.5 seconds remaining.
Down one, the Lakers went to Ingram, whose layup was rejected by Al Horford with three seconds left. The ball went right to Rondo, who drilled his game-winning jumper.
The game featured the two teams most mentioned in the Anthony Davis sweepstakes, which ended Thursday with no winner as New Orleans held onto their star.
The Celtics wound up mostly standing pat at the trade deadline, their only move coming when they sent Jabari Bird and cash to Atlanta for cash. The Lakers made a couple of minor moves, landing Reggie Bullock from Detroit and Mike Muscala from the Los Angeles Clippers via Philadelphia, dealing Svi Mykhailiuk, Michael Beasley and Ivica Zubac in the process.
Neither of the two new Lakers saw action in the game.
James finished with a triple-double for the Lakers with game highs in points (28), rebounds (12) and assists (12).
Kuzma backed James with 25 points, Rondo, Caldwell-Pope and JaVale McGee scored 17 apiece, Lance Stephenson had 14 and Ingram 11 for Los Angeles, which was coming off a 136-94 thumping at the hands of the Indiana Pacers on Tuesday.
Rondo notched a double-double with 10 assists.
Irving had a team-high 24 points and team-high eight assists for the Celtics, who had a five-game winning streak snapped.
Tatum finished with a 22-point, 10-rebound double-double for Boston, while Daniel Theis had 20 points, Terry Rozier 19, Jaylen Brown 18 and Horford 12.
The Lakers outshot the Celtics 51.5 percent to 48.9.
After the Celtics dominated the first half, leading by as many as 18, the Lakers rallied to take a 78-75 lead just past the midpoint of the third period on a 3-pointer by Rondo.
Los Angeles took a 99-93 lead into the fourth quarter, but this time the Celtics rallied, regaining the advantage at 102-101 on a dunk by Theis with 10:10 to go.
Boston held the lead until the 3-pointers by Caldwell-Pope and James in the final 1:22.
—Field Level Media