Monthly Archive for January, 2011

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Barnes Suffers Tear of Lateral Meniscus

UCLA Health SystemLakers reserve forward Matt Barnes suffered a tear of the lateral meniscus of his right knee in the first half of Friday evening’s game against New Orleans and will need surgery.

His knee was classified as a sprain during the game before diagnostic tests were taken, and the MRI exam on Saturday morning confirmed the tear.

The Lakers will avoid giving a time table on the injury until after the surgery, likely to be early next week, though an exact date is currently being determined.

In 37 games for the Lakers, Barnes averaged 7.4 points, 4.8 rebounds and 0.70 steals while along with Ron Artest being charged with defending the opposing team’s best wing players. While Barnes is out, Artest’s minutes are expected to go up, while Luke Walton and rookie Devin Ebanks could also see increased roles.

Kobe Surpasses Big O for 9th on Scoring List

With a hanging bank shot while driving to his right in the third quarter of L.A.’s Friday evening win over New Orleans, Kobe Bryant became the ninth greatest scorer in NBA history, surpassing hoops legend Oscar Robertson.

Bryant needed 16 points to one-up Robertson, and finished the game with 25 to reach 26,720 for his career.

“Oscar was a big personality, one of the great players of the game, arguably one of the top guards to ever play the game,” said Phil Jackson. “Kobe obviously fits in that category now, and he’s persistently gone on through his career and had the longevity to do this. He really recognizes this as a great mile mark.”

Bryant said that he was of course honored and humbled to surpass a player he grew up modeling part of his game after, as Robertson — along with Jerry West and Michael Jordan — was a big, physical guard who imposed his will on his opponents. Bryant took Robertson’s baseline jumper and made it his own, accounting for more than a few of his 26,000-plus points.

That said, the record Bryant most admires is not Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s all-time scoring record (38,387), but rather Bill Russell’s record for rings (11).

Nonetheless, if Bryant continues his current scoring pace of about 25 points per game, he’ll pass Hakeem Olajuwon (26,946), Elvin Hayes (27,313) and Moses Malone (27,409) later in the season to reach No. 6 on the historical chart.

Lakers – Hornets Postgame Numbers

We highlighted some of the more interesting numbers from L.A.’s Friday evening victory over the New Orleans Hornets at STAPLES Center, which saw the team’s record improve to 26-11 on the season.

26,720 Needing 16 points to surpass Oscar Robertson for sole possession of 9th place on the NBA’s all-time scoring list, Kobe Bryant dropped 25, showing off a motley crew of offensive moves including a left-handed floater while driving left that sealed the win late in the fourth quarter.

50.6 L.A.’s field goal percentage in a very solid all-around performance from the field. The Lakers made 39-of-77 overall buckets, and 5-of-12 three-pointers.

20 Points scored by Pau Gasol, as well as his combined number of rebounds (13) and assists (7) in a terrific all-around game for the Spaniard, his best in a few weeks.

17 Points off the pine for Lamar Odom, who managed 24 against New Orleans last week in his first game off the bench of the season. He added 13 rebounds to match Gasol. This was also the number of points scored by Andrew Bynum, one short of his season high, on 7-of-13 field goals with five boards of his own. All together, it was a dominating performance from L.A.’s front line.

8 First half turnovers for the Lakers, helping the Hornets stay in the game despite 60.6 percent shooting from the home team. L.A., however, took much better care of the rock in the second half, amassing only three more turnovers to finish with 11.

2 Injuries to Lakers players, including a sprained right knee for Matt Barnes and a sprained left ankle for Steve Blake. Barnes will get an MRI in the morning, while Blake returned to the floor after being re-taped in the locker room.

Lakers 101, Hornets 97: Jan. 7 Running Diary

Below is a running diary of L.A.’s Friday night home contest against New Orleans as the Lakers looked for their fifth win in six games since Andrew Bynum returned to the starting line up, with some comments drawn from our @LakersReporter Twitter account, and a few more details in case you missed any of the action:

Lakers: Fisher, Bryant, Artest, Gasol and Bynum
Hornets: C. Paul, M. Belinelli, T. Ariza, D. West, E. Okafor

7:26 The Lakers’ coaching staff always enjoys an aggressive Pau Gasol early in games, which we saw as the Spaniard opened with a jumper, two foul shots and a put-back layup to reach six points with three boards in putting L.A. up 14-11. His scoring has dipped considerably in the past month due primarily to a lack of field goal attempts, but the Lakers weren’t concerned. Moments later, he’d add two more field goals to reach 10 points with four rebounds.

0:31.9 Phil Jackson replaced Andrew Bynum with Lamar Odom with about four minutes left, leaving the too-effective-to-rest Gasol out there, which would pay off again late as he found Shannon Brown on a back cut for the final bucket of the period, giving the Lakers a 27-24 lead. Yet it was the second quarter in New Orleans last week in which the Lakers blew the game open…

8:14… And they looked intent on doing the same early in the period, getting Bynum’s second bucket of the period after a pretty layup from Odom to open a 35-28 lead. Gasol, Bynum and Odom were a combined 9-for-11 at that point, taking advantage of the Hornets’ lack of size.

5:33 Despite shooting just 26 percent from three in the season, former Laker Trevor Ariza made his second triple of the game, and fourth field goal in five tries, to bring the Hornets within three. The Lakers had eased off a bit defensively, perhaps because shots were coming so easily at the other end, to allow New Orleans to stay in the mix.

0:49.4 Bryant’s long two gave him a game-high 12 points on 5-of-7 shooting, continuing a terrific performance from the field for the whole Purple and Gold team that had ‘em at 62 percent, and up 49-41. The Hornets managed to pull a few points back with a triple and two Chris Paul free throws (just his third and fourth points of the half), the Lakers taking a 51-46 lead into the half.

10:15 To open the game, we talked about how much L.A.’s coaches like when Gasol gets off early. They also like when fellow 7-footer Bynum establishes good low-post position, and then takes his time with his moves and shots. En route to his 15 points on 6-of-8 shooting, Bynum did just that, taking his defender deep, waiting to get ‘em off balance, and simply rising and dropping home shot after shot, his latest keeping L.A. up five.

5:49 The Hornets, however, responded with an 8-0 run capped by Marco Belinelli’s triple to take a 62-61 lead. The Lakers suddenly went cold from the field despite creating good shots, with Bryant missing all three of his attempts to that point in the quarter.

2:02 Leading the charge out of that poor offensive stretch was, naturally, Bryant, who set up Gasol and then Artest for back-to-back buckets, then made 1-of-2 two free throws to tie Oscar Robertson as the 9th all-time leading scorer in NBA history. Moments later, Bryant would bank in a hanging, running jumper to surpass the Big 0 and push his way further into the record books. Pretty amazing, and hard to put into perspective while he’s still playing at such a high level.

6:11 Having already lost Matt Barnes to a sprained right knee late in the first half, the Lakers were happy to see Steve Blake come back out of the locker room after getting the left ankle he’d jut sprained. Blake, one of the tougher players in the league, was available for return if Phil Jackson deemed it necessary. The Lakers, meanwhile, continued to hold off a Hornets’ team playing with quite a bit of grit, looking for revenge after L.A.’s blowout win a week earlier in the Big Easy.

5:04 In that road win, Odom went off for 24 points, his career high off the bench. Tonight, he was even better despite a few less points, nailing three straight shots in the fourth to reach 17 points with 12 rebounds, two assists and two blocks, putting L.A. up 89-83.

1:23 Perhaps the most impressive of Bryant’s motley crew of tough shots on this evening was a left-handed floater over N.O.’s defense as he cut diagonally left through the paint, putting L.A. up 97-92 and essentially sealing the team’s fifth victory in six games since Bynum returned to the starting line up. Gasol would add three late foul shots to cap a terrific game in which he scored 20 points with 13 rebounds and seven assists. The final: Lakers 101, Hornets 97, L.A. winning for the fifth time in six games since Bynum returned to the starting line up.

Third All-Star Voting Returns

The latest All-Star voting returns show more of the same; Kobe on top.

Bryant continues to lead all vote getters by a healthy margin with a total of over 1.39 million. Pau Gasol remained third at forward trailing Kevin Durant and Carmelo Anthony, while Andrew Bynum is still second at center behind Yao Ming.

(If an injured player is voted to start, commissioner David Stern chooses an injury replacement for the roster and the conference’s coach tabs a reserve to start)

Voting online remains open for another 17 days. Make a push for Pau by voting now. CLICK HERE TO VOTE NOW!!!

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Forwards: Kevin Durant (OKC) 945,944; Carmelo Anthony (Den) 742,284; Pau Gasol (LAL) 702,859; Tim Duncan (SA) 551,226; Blake Griffin (LAC) 540,701; Dirk Nowitzki (Dal) 518,682; Lamar Odom (LAL) 285,667; Luis Scola (Hou) 258,407; Kevin Love (Min) 233,273; Caron Butler (Dal) 186,626.

Guards: Kobe Bryant (LAL) 1,391,597; Chris Paul (NOH) 724,605; Manu Ginobili (SA) 504,123; Steve Nash (Pho) 397,975; Deron Williams (Utah) 384,515; Russell Westbrook (OKC) 327,453; Tony Parker (SA) 298,771; Jason Kidd (Dal) 260,569; Vince Carter (Pho) 228,698; Eric Gordon (LAC) 190,636.

Centers: Yao Ming (Hou) 754,583; Andrew Bynum (LAL) 493,237; Nene (Den) 292,829; Marc Gasol 263,000; Brendan Haywood (Dal) 245,737; Emeka Okafor (NOH) 227,621; Chris Kaman (LAC) 148,389; Marcus Camby (Por) 148,322; Andris Biedrins (GS) 91,600; Robin Lopez (Pho) 81,148.


Forwards: LeBron James (Mia) 1,194,091; Kevin Garnett (Bos) 850,687; Amar’e Stoudemire (NYK) 826,628; Paul Pierce (Bos) 465,270; Chris Bosh (Mia) 334,921; Josh Smith (Atl) 225,951; Carlos Boozer (Chi) 222,431; Danilo Gallinari (NYK) 168,519; Danny Granger (Ind) 158,836; Andre Iguodala (Phi) 150,840.

Guards: Dwyane Wade (Mia) 1,167,649; Rajon Rondo (Bos) 929,781; Derrick Rose (Chi) 917,753; Ray Allen (Bos) 494,489; John Wall (Was) 212,238; Gilbert Arenas (Orl) 193,056; Brandon Jennings (Mil) 172,076; Raymond Felton (NYK) 144,707; Jamal Crawford (Atl) 123,531, Joe Johnson (Atl) 119,455.

Centers: Dwight Howard (Orl) 1,205,159; Shaquille O’Neal (Bos) 506,621; Joakim Noah (Chi) 197,407; Andrew Bogut (Mil) 159,560; Al Horford (Atl) 149,908; Roy Hibbert (Ind) 133,416; Andrea Bargnani (Tor) 126,185; Brook Lopez (NJ) 104,784; JaVale McGee (Was) 82,650; Ben Wallace (Det) 61,051.

Lakers 99, Suns 95: Jan. 5 Running Diary

Below is a running diary of L.A.’s Wednesday night game at Phoenix as the Lakers looked for their fourth win in five games since Andrew Bynum returned to the starting line up, with some comments drawn from our @LakersReporter Twitter account, and a few more details in case you missed any of the action:

Lakers: Fisher, Bryant, Artest, Gasol and Bynum
Suns: S. Nash, V. Carter, G. Hill, M. Gortat and R. Lopez

8:52 The Suns went off the reservation a bit with their line up, looking to match up with L.A.’s length by starting Marcin Gortat at the four and Robin Lopez at the five, moving Mickael Pietrus to the bench. Since neither Gortat nor Lopez is much of an offensive threat, Phoenix looked different from the team revolving around three-point shooting on the wings, content to let the bigs set screens for jump shots from Vince Carter and Grant Hill. Those two vets, however, both hit two perimeter J’s to give Phoenix an early 9-6 lead, while L.A. pounded the ball inside to Andrew Bynum (four points).

4:00 After letting Bynum carry the heavy load inside to open the quarter, as he drew three PF’s and scored four points despite missing 4-of-6 free throws, Kobe Bryant started to take advantage of the open space on the court with Phoenix packing the paint. He sank his next three shots, including a three from his favorite spot of last season’s Western Conference Finals, kicking off a run that would continue in earnest once he went to the bench.

1:24 Since entering near the at the 5:27 mark, Lamar Odom amassed six rebounds with four points and an assist, leading a 16-0 Lakers burst capped by five straight points from Shannon Brown out of transition run outs. Though L.A. had played the night before, their legs looked more than fresh in building a 29-17 lead. Phoenix managed a put-back layup from sub Jared Dudley to stop the run, and he added two free throws with 0.8 seconds left to cut L.A.’s lead to seven (31-24) at the break.

10:29 Steve Blake buried back-to-back jumpers to open the second for the Lakers, and Brown followed with two free throws after drawing a foul in transition, but the Lakers missed two defensive rotations at the other end to concede open threes to Jared Dudley and Channing Frye, negating their own offense.

7:45 Tough break for the Lakers with Odom’s third personal foul, his going to the bench immediately followed by Phoenix getting a transition layup from Hill off Blake’s turnover to tie the game. Blake, however, drained his third shot of the game at the other end in four attempts, a triple, to put L.A. back up three at 42-39.

2:01 Phoenix continued a much better second quarter thanks in large part to Dudley, who buried his second triple after converting his second offensive-rebound layup to reach 16 points. Nash followed a triple of his own to give the Suns their first lead since early in the game, and after Nash drew Artest’s charge, Dudley hit yet another to make it a 50-46 Phoenix lead. L.A. would pull three points back before halftime to trail by a point at the break. Bryant had 10 points, while nine of his teammates scored at least one bucket.

8:00 Much like the third quarter against Detroit, L.A. came out with solid defensive intensity, and took advantage of their stops to go on a 12-5 run that opened an eight-point lead. Bryant made all three of his shots in the stretch, while Bynum converted two easy looks inside.

3:30 Ron Artest continued a solid individual game by hitting his second triple of the game, and following up by working the offensive glass to earn L.A. two extra shots on a possession, even though he wouldn’t be credited with a rebound as he forced Gortat to knock the ball out of bounds. Meanwhile, Matt Barnes would enter to give Artest a break, charged with limiting Dudley at the other end after Phoenix’s SF scored 19 first half points.

0:08.0 Bryant’s 1-of-2 free throws allowed L.A. a 80-73 lead after the third quarter, thanks to an Odom-inspired 7-2 run featuring his ridiculous spinning, banked leaner and his pretty dish to Barnes on the next possession.
Continue reading ‘Lakers 99, Suns 95: Jan. 5 Running Diary’

Bryant NBA’s 10th All-Time Leading Scorer

Perhaps a thunderous tomahawk jam would have been a more fitting way for Kobe Bryant to surpass Dominique Wilkins for 10th place on the NBA’s all-time scoring list, but during the third quarter of L.A.’s Tuesday win over Detroit, a running layup did the trick just the same.

“[Passing] Dominique, that was a big deal,” said Bryant’s teammate Lamar Odom. “It was great that he let us be a part of history.”

With 17 points in 29 minutes before sitting out the fourth quarter of a blow out, the Black Mamba reached 26,671 points in his career, surpassing ‘Nique’s 26,668.

It’s been a constant assault up the chart of late for No. 24.

Back on December 10th, Bryant used 23 points at Chicago to surpass John Havlicek (26,395) for 11th on the list, and should he continue at his current pace of 25.4 points per game, he’ll climb all the way up to sixth place by season’s end.

Waiting in front of Bryant are Oscar Robertson (9th/26,710*), Hakeem Olajuwon (8th/26,946), Elvin Hayes (7th/27,313) and Moses Malone (6th/27,409). As Bryant said in the below video, it’s difficult to put into perspective while one’s focus is exclusively on winning another championship, but the numbers speak for themselves. Last season alone, Bryant leapfrogged Alex English (25,613), Reggie Miller (25,279), Jerry West (25,192), Patrick Ewing (24,815) and Allen Iverson (24,368).
*Bryant needs just 40 points to surpass the Big O, a feat he could accomplish by going off in Phoenix on Wednesday night, or more likely by sticking around his average to get there on Friday against New Orleans.

When he passed West with a dunk at the 4:14 mark of the third quarter last February in Memphis, finishing the game with 44 points (West’s retired number), Bryant became the leading scorer in Lakers franchise history. Going back one year further to 2008-09, Bryant passed Hall-of-Famers Charles Barkley (23,757), Robert Parish (23,334), Adrian Dantley (23,177), Elgin Baylor (23,149), Clyde Drexler (22,195), Gary Payton (21,813) and Larry Bird (21,791).

Lakers 108, Pistons 83: Jan. 4 Running Diary

Below is a running diary of L.A.’s Tuesday night game against Detroit as the Lakers looked to get back in the win column, with some comments drawn from our @LakersReporter Twitter account, and a few more details in case you missed any of the action:

Lakers: Fisher, Bryant, Artest, Gasol and Bynum
Pistons: B. Gordon, T. McGrady, T. Prince, C. Villanueva, B. Wallace

6:43 The steady of improvement of Andrew Bynum continued early in Tuesday’s game, as the 7-footer made his first four shots, all in close, to reach eight points for the Lakers. Pistons center Ben Wallace simply couldn’t deal with Bynum’s length, but the 23-year-old did pick up his second foul moments later, bringing Lamar Odom into the contest. Bynum has been working with assistant coach Chuck Person on establishing low-post position particularly on the weak side of the floor when the ball is on the strong side, and is seeing fruitful results despite minimal field goal attempts.

2:00 While Bryant couldn’t get his shot to fall, missing his first five attempts, he was effective in full-on dish mode. His fifth assist of the period came on a pretty drop off pass to Gasol, as the Lakers amassed 18 points in the paint much to their coaches’ pleasure.

0:00 The Lakers finished the first quarter with a 24-19 lead despite shooting only 38.5 percent, thanks largely to their six offensive rebounds and zero turnovers. That allowed the Lakers to attempt twice as many shots, making Detroit’s 53.8 percent shooting matter little. It was a solid all-around quarter of basketball despite the poor shooting from Bryant in particular (0-for-9, with several shots rimming out) after one of the more interesting pregame sessions we’ve had this year, featuring Phil Jackson addressing a practice confrontation with Ron Artest and Mark Cuban’s calling Jackson Lakers VP Jeanie Buss’s “Boy Toy.”

10:56 Bynum didn’t have a chance to carry his early rhythm from the first quarter into the second, as he picked up his third personal foul almost immediately and went to the bench for the rest of the half. Get ready for big minutes from Pau Gasol…

9:22 Gasol, who’d finish the half with 13 points and six rebounds, both highs for the game, put the Lakers up 10 by converting two free throws. The Spaniard’s production from a scoring standpoint has been down of late, mostly because he took nine shots or fewer in three of the team’s previous five games, three of which were losses. He took eight in the first half, making five, a good indicator that L.A. was focusing on getting Gasol more opportunities.

1:47 The Lakers finally turned the ball over for the first time, but then forced Detroit’s ninth TO on the opposite end in a game they still controlled, leading 43-37. The Pistons trimmed that lead in half at the break (45-42), using Rip Hamilton’s second three off the bench of the period to stay within range.

10:30 Artest hit the first shot of the game, a three from the corner, and added the first shot of the second half by dropping another triple. Derek Fisher followed with one of his own, his first make of the game, to put the Lakers up nine points.

6:43 With the Lakers up comfortably, we saw a moment of NBA history, on a driving hoop through traffic as Kobe Bryant became the NBA’s 10th all-time leading scorer with 26,668 career points, surpassing Dominique Wilkins. Earlier this season, Bryant surpassed John Havlicek for 11th, and if he continues at his current scoring pace, he’ll move all the way up to 6th on the all-time list.

0:28.5 Artest concluded a terrific quarter for the Lakers with a fastbreak dunk off his steal, producing a 31-17 edge in the period to take command of the game with a 17-point lead. Bryant reached 17 points, eight assists and seven rebounds, and Gasol 21 points with seven assists to pace the home team.

9:09 During Monday’s practice, Phil Jackson put his players through a tough running drill known as “82′s”, in which the Lakers have to make 82 layups in a certain number of minutes, otherwise be forced to do the drill again. Apparently, it worked out pretty well, since the Lakers sprinted past Detroit in transition throughout the evening to the tune of a 19-2 edge in fast break points after Steve Blake and Shannon Brown converted three layups in a two-minute stretch, pushing L.A.’s lead to 89-61.

7:00 The lead kept growing, as Odom followed his three-pointer with three free throws after drawing a foul on a three-point attempt, making it a 29-point Lakers lead. Odom checked in with 16 points, seven boards and four assists at that point, while Brown and Blake had combined for 15 bench points of their own.

3:29 Trying to continue to provide some intrigue for the fans in a blow out, Luke Walton sandwiched corner triples around a technical foul presumably for trash talking a few Pistons. The second triple made 102-76, and the Lakers would end up with a 108-83 margin in sweeping the Pistons on the season.

26,671 Career points for Kobe Bryant, who surpassed Dominique Wilkins for 10th on the NBA’s all-time scoring list with a third quarter layup.

60 Points in the paint for the Lakers, 20 more than Detroit.

29 Assists for the Lakers, showcasing a game of good ball movement. Bryant led the way with eight, while Lamar Odom, Ron Artest and Steve Blake added four apiece.

19 Fast break points for the Lakers, who got out and ran particularly well in the second half, when they amassed 15 of those points.

6 Turnovers in the game for the Lakers, a major improvement in ball control from a sloppy Sunday loss to the Grizzlies (20 turnovers). Meanwhile, L.A. forced 19 Pistons turnovers, and scored 25 points off those mistakes.

Phil Jackson Talks Artest, Cuban, Etc.

Below is a transcript of a selection of Phil Jackson’s comments in his regular media session prior to L.A.’s Tuesday evening home game against Detroit, including Jackson’s reactions to a “man-to-man” confrontation with Ron Artest at practice and some comments from Mark Cuban.

You can also listen to the audio by clicking play at the bottom of the post.

On if a Yahoo! report referring to a practice confrontation initiated by Ron Artest were accurate:
Jackson: No, that’s not accurate. But it’s close to accurate. It was not a loud confrontation, it was a man-to-man confrontation. It was obviously out of character for both that to happen in practice and for Ron. It wasn’t about (my) embarrassing (Ron) in public, it was about some of the issues that had been brought up and were focused (on) him. It was direct, but it wasn’t loud … It’s nothing more than what could normally happen at a practice. Obviously there is a spy, or camera, or leak or something went on at our practice, but those are the things that happen at practice. It’s not the first time, and it’s not going to be the last. Ron came in and apologized not only to me but in front of the team for what he said was a distraction at practice. That was his own desire to do so, I didn’t solicit it from him.

In Ron’s defense, I’ve been trying to motivate him through a variety of activities, starting from the very beginning. Talking about his activity level, and sometimes about his bizarre behavior. He wants it to be in private. I just said, ‘Don’t act it out in public and then we can keep it private.’

On if the conversation will affect the way Jackson interacts with Artest:
Jackson: Sure.

On Dallas Mavericks Owner Mark Cuban’s comments to his assessment of Caron Butler’s injury:
Jackson: Mark must be really worried. If he’s got to comment on that, he must be really worried. I feel badly for (the Mavericks), that’s what I was saying. It’s hard to replace a player that good. They do have a good player that’s sitting behind him. Shawn (Marion) is a fine player, but it’s not Caron Butler. It’s hard to replace a player like that.

On Cuban referring to Jackson as Lakers VP Jeanie Buss’s “Boy Toy.”
Jackson: I love it. I consider myself an old man. That I’m a “Boy Toy,” that’s terrific … Mark gets riled up when I make comments about his team, but they were leading the league. It’s a big blow to a team that’s playing that well.

On why he feels reactions to the comments he makes are so strong:
Jackson: They must be misconstrued. Either that, or the tenor in which I say them must not go the same way as the tenor of what the conversation is about. The one that is probably the most egregious is the Houston thing about disrespecting Rudy (Tomjanovich), because that was so off the cuff and so solicited by the reporter itself that it was kind of unfair to take those things on.

Lakers – Grizzlies Postgame Numbers

We highlighted some of the more interesting numbers from L.A.’s Sunday evening loss to the Memphis Grizzlies at STAPLES Center, which saw the team’s record fall to 23-11 on the season.

1 Offensive boards in the first half for the Lakers. They managed five in the second half, but six was still just half of their usual 12.21.

5 Blocks for Andrew Bynum, who was L.A.’s lone bright spot in the contest. He added nine points and 11 rebounds in 27 minutes and continues to look a bit better physically every game. Nov. 29, 2009 was the last time ‘Drew registered five blocks in a regular season game.

7 More rebounds claimed by the Grizzlies, who controlled the glass throughout the contest.

14 More paint points for Memphis (50-36).

17 Points in the third quarter for Kobe Bryant, who’d finish with a team-high 28 on the night. That didn’t seem to help L.A.’s D, however, as the home team conceded 31 points in the quarter to allow Memphis a 15-point lead heading into the fourth quarter.

20 Turnovers for the Lakers, a big problem throughout the contest. Memphis took exactly twice as good care of the ball (10 TO’s).

27 Points for Rudy Gay, who continued his terrific year by leading the Grizz to their second win over the Lakers in three games.

46.5 L.A.’s shooting percentage, which wasn’t the problem, as the lack of offensive rebounds and high volume of turnovers didn’t create enough shots.