Below is a running diary of L.A.’s Thursday evening road contest at Oklahoma City, the Lakers coming a tough road win at Dallas on Wednesday, 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, World Peace, Gasol and Bynum
Thunder: R. Westbrook, D. Cook, K. Durant, S.Ibaka, K. Perkins
12:00 Hi folks, and welcome to OKC. There was some question about whether or not key sixth man James Harden would play for the Thunder after tweaking his wrist last night, but he was set to play, leaving Thabo Sefolosha and Nick Collison – both good role players – as the only outs for the home team. L.A. was fully healthy, but had some tired legs after a tough win in Dallas the night before. They weren’t able to bring it against the Knicks after a tough win at Boston early this month, but we’ll see what we get tonight.
3:59 After eight minutes, the results were pretty good. L.A. was largely able to control tempo, and used a 6-0 run capped by a fast break dunk from Bynum (you’d expect that more from Durant or Westbrook, right?) that gave L.A. a 13-11 lead and forced Scott Brooks into a time out. In came subs Harden, N. Mohammad for OKC, and Murphy/Barnes/Blake for L.A.
0:00 A really strong defensive first quarter helped the Lakers claim a 23-19 lead, the Thunder shooting just 37 percent (7-for-19) and Kobe hitting three straight shots after starting 1-for-6 to reach 10 points, one more than Durant. Another key: the Lakers held OKC without a single fast break point, showing that they controlled tempo.
8:47 With OKC backup PG Eric Maynor out for the season with a torn ACL and Harden not in to run pick and roll with Harden, the Thunder second unit wasn’t as formidable, L.A. keeping its four-point lead behind two Blake jumpers.
5:33 Not hard to see why the Thunder were able to erase a six-point Lakers lead to take a 34-33 lead: seven fast break points in the first six minutes of the second quarter after zero in the first quarter. Harden’s dunk off his run out from Kobe’s missed three is your example.
0:00 OKC found some momentum through the middle of the quarter, but an off-balance three from World Peace (his first triple was perfectly balanced, as LAL’s coaches have been stressing) sank through, and Fisher followed with a fast break runner to put L.A. up a point. Their lead was two with one second left, looking like 43-41 heading into halftime, but instead OKC managed to score five points in the final second, getting a Westbrook three, then a steal and jumper from Durant in 0.8 seconds to make it 46-43. A terrible ending to an otherwise solid half for the Lakers.
Continue reading ‘Lakers 85, OKC 100: Feb. 23 Running Diary’