NEW YORK, Jan. 31 (Ticker) -- One night after accusing the New York Knicks of quitting, coach Larry Brown packed it in early.

Brown was ejected midway through the third quarter as the defenseless Knicks showed little fight in their ninth loss in 10 games, a 130-97 beating at the hands of the Los Angeles Lakers, who got 40 points from Kobe Bryant.

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The fans filled Madison Square Garden - "The World's Most Famous Arena" - to see Bryant, the world's most famous player since his 81-point eruption nine days ago. Instead, they saw another lackluster effort from the Knicks.

The Knicks were even worse than they were in Monday's 120-101 loss in Atlanta, after which Brown - when asked if his team had quit - said, "It looked that way. Didn't it look that way to you? It sure looked that way to me."

It looked that way again Tuesday. The Knicks surrendered another 60-point first half and were never in it in the second half.

With 5:46 left in the third quarter, Brown had had enough and came onto the court to argue with referee Steve Javie, who promptly ejected him.

Afterward, reporters endured a lengthy wait for Brown, but he never came out to discuss the game or the ejection with the media. Instead, assistant Herb Williams - who coached the rest of the game - met the media and defended Brown's actions.

"Every second that he's over there on the bench, he's trying to fight for the team," Williams said. "He's trying to get every advantage that he can. That's his style. He's going to fight for his team. That's him, night in and night out. He's always going to fight and try to protect his team as best as possible."

"He was very upset," Knicks rookie forward Channing Frye added. "He voiced his opinion and that is just the way it goes. He has passion for the game and he has passion for his players. Things aren't going right and he voiced his opinion."

During their slide, the Knicks have lost by at least 15 points five times and allowed at least 105 points seven times. In their only win, they nearly blew a 25-point lead at home against Orlando.

The Lakers didn't need an explosion from Bryant, who nevertheless scored 25 points in the first half, helping them open a 60-44 advantage. He took a seat with his fourth foul in the third quarter but still notched his league-leading 14th 40-point game of the season.

"I waited until the five-minute timeout in the fourth quarter (to take Bryant out)," Los Angeles coach Phil Jackson said. "We talked at halftime about not getting caught up in the anixety about scoring."

When the game was ending, Bryant got a standing ovation from a contingent of Lakers fans near the visiting bench. He also heard some chants of "MVP" from fans of both teams as he finished the month averaging 43.4 points.

"It feels good," Bryant said. "It lets me know they appreciate what I do on the floor."

"Forty points is not that hard to average," Los Angeles guard Smush Parker joked. "It's easy. Kobe Bryant is a great player. It's incredible. It's fun to play with him. It's fun to be in the backcourt with him. It's fun to watch."

Bryant made 7-of-17 shots and 23-of-26 free throws, setting the Garden record for free throws made and tying the mark for attempts established by Bernard King vs. New Jersey on December 25, 1984.

"I was aggressive," said Bryant, who also went 23-of-26 from the line at Cleveland on January 30, 2001. "I saw how they played defense and decided to come at them."

The Lakers shot 58 free throws to 24 for the Knicks, which also may have upset Brown.

"Things happen," New York point guard Stephon Marbury said. "Coach was frustrated with the way were playing, especially the way the game was being called from his point of view. Things like that happen."

In improving to 1-1 on a seven-game road trip, Los Angeles also got a lift from native New Yorkers Parker and Lamar Odom. Parker had 15 points and five assists and Odom added 11 and 13 rebounds.

"(The attention on Bryant) definitely helped me," said Parker, who played collegiately at Fordham. "To be starting for the Lakers is incredible. They're a team with so much history and it's always fun to come back home and win in front of your hometown friends and family."

"I kept myself in the game by rebounding the ball," said Odom, who had shot 9-of-27 in his previous three games. "There's a lot of ways I can help this team. I just got to play good basketball, be smart with the basketball."

Everyone got into the act for the Lakers, who shot 57 percent (39-of-68) and scored 130 points for the first time in six seasons. Teenage rookie Andrew Bynum scored a career-best 16 points on 7-of-7 shooting in a garbage-time fourth quarter and Sasha Vujacic added 11, making all four of his shots.

Qyntel Woods scored 15 points and Quentin Richardson added 14 for the Knicks, who shot 42 percent (36-of-86) and were outrebounded, 46-35. New York used its 27th different starting lineup and became the fourth team to reach 30 losses.