We highlighted some of the more interesting numbers from L.A.’s Tuesday evening win over Minnesota at STAPLES Center, the eighth straight victory for the Purple and Gold to open the 2010-11 campaign:
3 First half steals from Ron Artest, who continues to lead the Lakers in swipes on the young season (1.87 coming into the game).
5 Double-doubles for Pau Gasol in eight games after his 18-point, 10-rebound effort to follow up Sunday’s triple-double.
9 Game-high assists for Minny’s Sebastian Telfair, forced into 39 minutes of duty since Luke Ridnour (hamstring) and Jonny Flynn (hip) were both out due to injury. No Lakers player had more than four assists (Ron Artest, Derek Fisher).
12 More rebounds collected by the Wolves than the Lakers. Phil Jackson gave Minnesota credit for “working harder,” particularly on the glass.
13 Seasons since the Lakers started 8-0, when the 1997-98 squad opened 11-0. L.A. also started the 1987-88 season 8-0 before dropping its ninth game.
24 Rebounds by Minnesota’s Kevin Love, including 11 on the offensive end. Love added 23 points and five assists in a losing effort.
26 Minutes played by Lamar Odom, saddled with foul trouble throughout, though his seven straight points in the fourth quarter helped L.A. close the game. He finished with 15 points, eight boards and three assists.
27 Turnovers committed by the Wolves, compared to 18 from L.A., a deciding factor in the contest. That was about the only thing Wolves Coach Kurt Rambis didn’t like about his team’s effort: “This was the best game of the year by far in terms of executing what we want to get accomplished at both ends of the floor,” he said.
31.8 Minnesota’s second half field goal percentage, including 2-of-11 from three, after a perfect 5-of-5 first quarter from the Wolves, as the Lakers picked things up defensively down the stretch.
33 Season-high points scored by Kobe Bryant, though it did take him 28 field goal attempts to get there. Bryant had a hard time earning foul calls from repeated drives to the hoop in the second half.