Lakers 108, Clippers 97: Postgame

Heading into Wednesday’s contest against a Clippers squad missing its best four players, including the only three experienced posts on the roster (Marcus Camby, Chris Kaman and Zach Randolph), Andrew Bynum may have been licking his chops.

‘Drew’s previous career high was 28 points, but even that seemed a bit high since he failed to get to 20 points in his last four games.

Key word there: “seemed.”

On this night, Bynum was entirely unstoppable, smashing his way to 42 points on 17-of-24 shooting, including a plethora of dunks, not to mention 15 rebounds and three swats.

“He is a great player,” said Clippers rookie center DeAndre Jordan, who himself had a career-high 23 points. “He is big, when he gets in the paint he takes up a lot of space … He uses his arms really well and makes you get over him.”

Joining Bynum in the fun was Kobe Bryant, who put up his second triple-double in three games (and 16th of his career) behind 18 points, 12 assists and 10 rebounds. Bryant has now amassed 45 dimes in his last four games – the most in any four-game stretch of his career – to creep into the league’s top 25 dimers.

The Clippers managed to stay in the game throughout the first half by hitting 56 percent of their shots to trail the Lakers just 58-55 at the break, though the purple and gold turned on the defensive clamps in the third quarter. In that period, the Clips hit just 6-of-17 shots (35.3 percent), half plus one as many as the Lakers (13-of-20) to essentially put the game on ice. The Lakers would lead by as many as 18 in the fourth before allowing the Clips to get within seven whilst trying to get Bynum to 40 points, but the game result was never in question.

The Lakers are back at STAPLES tomorrow evening, this time serving as the home team with the 9-32 Washington Wizards heading into Los Angeles for a TNT game before which the All-Star starters (including Bryant) will be announced.

Until then, a few numbers:

11.25
Average assists for Bryant in his last four games. Chris Paul currently leads the league with his 11.1 dimes per evening average.

19
Points for Lamar Odom in 28 minutes, a new season high. Odom scored 10 of his points in a three-minute stretch to open the fourth quarter, and added nine rebounds with three blocks.

23.8
Three-point percentage for the Lakers on 5-of-21, including a 1-for-8 collective effort from Trevor Ariza and Sasha Vujacic, who combined for just those three points.

24
Season-high field goal attempts by Andrew Bynum to get to his 42 points, as he missed only seven shots. Bynum also converted 8-of-11 free throws.

26
Rebounds grabbed for the entire game by the Clippers, while the Lakers collected 46. The Lakers had only nine fewer offensive boards than total boards from the home team.

31
Minutes played by Derek Fisher, his lowest total in 10 games (Golden State, Dec. 28, 25 min.).

70
Points in the paint for the Lakers, thanks in no small part to Bynum.

92
Shooting percentage by Clippers rookie DeAndre Jordan, who made 11-of-12 shots from the field, nearly all of which were two-handed dunks.

For more on L.A.’s 33rd win, check out our Gameday Page.