EL SEGUNDO, Calif. — The Lakers needed a night like this.
They finally tucked away a win after almost a week without one, tapping the brakes on a four-game losing streak with a 100-86 victory Friday over the Cleveland Cavaliers at Staples Center.
Montrezl Harrell provided punch by the basket, while Dennis Schröder did plenty of work outside and came up with one of his career's best-blocked shots.
Along the way, the Lakers enjoyed their first double-digit lead since LeBron James went down with a sprained ankle last Saturday.
It didn't start out looking like a victory when the Lakers trailed by seven at halftime, but they owned the third quarter by a massive 28-10 margin, allowing their fewest points in a quarter all season. It was also when Schröder chased down Darius Garland and blocked his shot from behind, caroming it hard off the backboard.
Schröder hadn't blocked a shot like that in a long time, if ever.
"It was a while ago," he acknowledged.
Schröder finished with 17 points, seven assists, four steals, and that one blocked shot.
Harrell continued to crush it on the court this month, finishing Friday's game with 24 points and 10 rebounds. Every shot he made was within a few feet of the hoop, an entertaining array of dunks, lay-ups, and tip-ins. He made 10 of 15 attempts overall.
"His attitude is what it's supposed to be: 'No one can stop me,'" teammate Wesley Matthews said. "He's an animal down there."
James remains weeks away from returning to action, although Anthony Davis is making some slight progress. The injured All-Star has increased his workload in shooting and dribbling, among other on-court activities, the Lakers announced before Friday's tip-off. Davis has missed 18 consecutive games because of calf and Achilles' tendon soreness. There is still no timetable for his return.
The Lakers (29-17) host Orlando on Sunday in another game against a struggling Eastern Conference team. The schedule turns tougher immediately after that, with a home game against Milwaukee and seven consecutive road games.