Morning Wrap: Lakers finish off Blazers; Clippers close out chance next

The Morning Wrap shares the day’s top five stories from our reporters at the Southern California Newspaper Group. … Sign up to have our top sports stories delivered to your inbox with our daily newsletters

ONE: Lakers reporter Kyle Goon writes: So the Lakers advanced, but not without effort. A 131-122 Game 5 victory didn’t inspire the kind of confidence a championship contender should. But days after acknowledging that closeout games are the hardest to win, James didn’t let the Lakers miss the opportunity: He scored 36 points in a triple-double, and helped feed Davis’ 43.

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TWO: Clippers reporter Mirjam Swanson writes: And so the playoffs resumed with three games Saturday and, on Sunday, another three contests scheduled, including the Clippers’ Game 6 matchup against the Dallas Mavericks. With Leonard, last season’s NBA Finals MVP, contributing 32.8 points, 9.4 rebounds and 4.8 assists in the best-of-seven Western Conference first-round series, the Clippers are ahead 3-2 following their franchise-record-setting 154-111 rout in Game 5. That game was Tuesday, but with everything that transpired during the week that NBA players walked off the job to protest the Aug. 23 police shooting of Jacob Blake in Wisconsin, it feels longer ago.

THREE: Dodgers reporter Bill Plunkett writes: If the Dodgers are one of the many teams circling around Rangers right-hander Lance Lynn — and they are — they did what they could to lower the price. The Dodgers got to Lynn for four runs in six innings Saturday on the way to handing him and the Texas Rangers a 7-4 defeat at Globe Life Field.

FOUR: Rams reporter Kevin Modesti writes: For the second consecutive year, John Wolford is accomplishing about as much as an NFL player can in August. In 2019, the undrafted free agent quarterback from the short-lived Alliance of American Football used a strong performance with his arm and legs in the Rams’ four preseason games to vault into a job on the practice squad.

FIVE: Angels reporter Jeff Fletcher writes: Jo Adell’s first few weeks in the big leagues haven’t gone quite as the Angels had hoped for their top prospect. It would take a little time, perhaps, for him to get his big league footing. He seemed to get it on Saturday night, blasting his first two homers in the Angels’ 16-3 victory over the Seattle Mariners.