Watch Anthony Davis score 42, lead Lakers to key win over Suns


LOS ANGELES — Anthony Davis had 42 points and 12 rebounds and the Los Angeles Lakers never trailed in a 123-110 win over the Phoenix Suns on Sunday night.

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Alex Caruso each had 17 points and the short-handed Lakers won for just the third time in their past 11 games.

LeBron James missed his fourth straight game for Los Angeles because of a sprained right ankle, and Kyle Kuzma was held out because of tightness in his back.

Cameron Payne had 24 points for the Suns, who have lost two of three following a five-game winning streak. Devin Booker added 21 points and Mikal Bridges 15.

An energized Davis led the way for the defending NBA champions as they try to avoid the play-in tournament, with his one-handed alley-oop from Andre Drummond setting the tone as Los Angeles scored the first seven points. The Lakers led 30-19 after the first quarter.

Los Angeles built its biggest advantage early in the fourth to go ahead by 23 points en route to avoid being swept in the three-game season series.

Phoenix could never find enough outside shooting to make a charge until the final quarter. They were 5 for 10 from 3-point range in the fourth.

Deandre Ayton made a reverse layup to get the Suns within 115-108 with 3:57 to play, but the Lakers were able to maintain a cushion until Davis closed it out with an emphatic reverse dunk and hit the subsequent free throw for the final margin.