Lakers Gameday | 02/23/08 | Lakers 113, Clippers 95

Team 1 2 3 4 F
Los Angeles Lakers 29 27 34 23 113
Los Angeles Clippers 21 27 24 23 95

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  • Balanced attack leads Lakers to seventh straight win, share of West lead

    Pau Gasol scored 23 points, five teammates finished in double figures, and the Los Angeles Lakers beat the short-handed Los Angeles Clippers 113-95 Saturday night for their seventh straight victory.

    The Lakers (38-17), tied with Phoenix for the Western Conference lead, also won seven in a row earlier this season, their longest streak since they won 11 straight late in the 2003-04 season before going on to reach the NBA finals.

    The Lakers have also won six straight road games -- their longest such streak in five years.

    Lamar Odom added 20 points and 10 rebounds; Kobe Bryant had 17 points and seven assists; Sasha Vujacic scored 17; Jordan Farmar added 14, and Derek Fisher scored 12 for the Lakers.

    Corey Maggette scored 23 points, Tim Thomas had 20 points and seven rebounds and rookie Al Thornton added 14 points for the Clippers (19-34), who were coming off back-to-back wins for the first time since their 4-0 start to the season.

    Chris Kaman (sore lower back) and Sam Cassell (sprained right wrist) sat out, leaving the Clippers with a makeshift lineup. Kaman is averaging 16.2 points, 13.2 rebounds and 3.0 blocked shots. Injured starters Elton Brand and Shaun Livingston have been sidelined all season.

    The Lakers broke the game open by outscoring the Clippers 28-14 to start the third quarter for an 84-62 lead. Fisher made three 3-pointers for nine points, Odom scored eight and Luke Walton added six during the spurt.

    The Lakers led 90-72 entering the final period. The Clippers drew within 13 when Thomas made their only 3-pointer with 3:19 remaining. But the Lakers scored the next seven points to pull away.

    The Lakers, coming off a thrilling 130-124 victory over the Suns three nights earlier, weren't the same team in the first half, shooting just 43.2 percent in taking a 56-48 lead. Gasol shot 5-for-7, Bryant was 4-for-7 and their teammates went 10-for-30 in the half.

    The Lakers outscored the Clippers 12-3 to finish the first quarter for a 29-21 lead. Farmar scored five points and Bryant added four during the spurt, which put the Lakers ahead for good.

    Game notes
    The game was played before an announced crowd of 20,236 at Staples Center. ... Lakers F Vladimir Radmanovic strained his right calf late in the first quarter and didn't return. ... Clippers coach Mike Dunleavy said he expects Brand and Livingston to play this season, but isn't sure when. "It's not going to be for a while," he said. ... The Lakers go for their eighth straight win Sunday night in Seattle. After that, they'll have 16 home games remaining and 10 road games left. They've played an NBA-low 25 home games. ... Maggette has scored 20 or more points in eight straight games. ... The Clippers used their 22nd different starting lineup of the season. ... The Lakers shot 10-for-26 from 3-point range, while the Clippers were 1-for-14.

    Copyright 2007 by STATS LLC and Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited

    LAKERS-CLIPPERS PREVIEW

    The Los Angeles Lakers are feeling good about themselves lately, but they're not about to overlook their crosstown rivals.

    The Lakers will be trying to match their longest winning streak of the season on Saturday when they face the Los Angeles Clippers.

    The Lakers (37-17) won their sixth straight on Wednesday, beating Phoenix 130-124 on the road. The Lakers, who posted their second-highest scoring total, have averaged 116.0 points during the run while outscoring opponents by nearly 14 per game.

    "We are playing very well, so our confidence is naturally pretty high, and we feel like there are a lot of things we are able to recognize as a group, both on the offensive floor and the defensive floor," said Kobe Bryant, who scored 41 points. "Our confidence stems from the fact that we can adjust play by play and quarter by quarter, and not lose too much rhythm in doing it."

    Wednesday's victory moved the Lakers into a tie for first place in the Pacific Division with the Suns, who were playing their first game with former Laker Shaquille O'Neal. Phoenix moved a half-game ahead of the Lakers with Friday's win over Boston, but the Lakers clinched the season series against the Suns.

    "The really important part of this is the season series," Los Angeles coach Phil Jackson said. "We now have an advantage if this is going to be a tight race as it's been. That's all you get out of a game like that: momentum, obviously, and some confidence for our team."

    Pau Gasol chipped in 29 points and is averaging 21.9 in eight games since joining the Lakers in a Feb. 1 trade with Memphis. Lamar Odom added 22 and 11 rebounds for his third straight double-double.

    "It's one more game, a game that really felt good and was great to win. It was a nice statement," Gasol said. "But now we've got to keep playing and keep winning, keep doing the same thing. It doesn't matter if you go to Phoenix and you win and then tomorrow you lose to the Clippers."

    The Lakers have won four of six against the Clippers (19-33), who also play their home games at Staples Center. The Clippers are mired in last place in the Pacific, but have won back-to-back games for the first time since starting the season 4-0.

    "The records are thrown out when we play the Clippers. It's an obvious fact, and the reality is that they're a talented team," Jackson said. "On their home court, it's going to be very difficult to win the game, we know that."

    Bryant has averaged 25.7 points in 43 career games against the Clippers, but 38.3 in the last 11 meetings.

    The Clippers upset Utah 114-104 on Friday, finally succeeding in their 14th attempt at consecutive wins since their 4-0 start. Rookie Al Thornton scored 14 of his 27 points in the fourth quarter, and Corey Maggette also had 27.

    "I'm glad it happened," coach Mike Dunleavy said. "Now we have to go for three in a row. Utah has been playing great basketball, but our guys played for the whole 48 minutes."

    Brevin Knight had four points and four assists in 22 minutes while starting at point guard for the injured Sam Cassell, who sprained his right wrist in Wednesday's 100-86 victory over Memphis.

    Copyright 2007 by STATS LLC and Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited


    (Noah Graham/NBAE/Getty Images)

    Los Angeles Lakers
    Record: 38-17
    Streak: Won 7

    INJURY REPORT
    Trevor Ariza: Fractured Foot - Out
    Kobe Bryant: Dislocated Pinkie - Will Play
    Andrew Bynum: Left Patella Subluxation - Out
    Chris Mihm: Right Ankle Bursitis - Out
    Los Angeles Clippers
    Record: 19-34
    Streak: Lost 1

    INJURY REPORT
    Elton Brand: Left Achilles Tendon - Out
    Sam Cassell: Sprained Right Wrist - Doubtful
    Paul Davis: Torn Right ACL - Out
    Shaun Livingston: Dislocated Left Knee - Out

    LAKERS BEST
    Points

    P. Gasol
    23
    Rebounds

    L. Odom
    10
    Assists

    K. Bryant
    7
    Plus/Minus

    P. Gasol
    +28

    POST-GAME NUMBERS
  • 20/10 - 20 points and 10 rebounds from Lamar Odom, continuing his string of outstanding play.
  • 41 - points from the Lakers' reserves, led by Sasha "The Machine" Vujacic's 17
  • 23 - more points from newcomer Pau Gasol who continues his seamless adjustment to the Lakers' offense
  • 10 - three point field goals made on 26 attempts for L.A.
  • 8 - of nine wins for the Lakers following the trade for Gasol, pushing them to number one in the Western Conference standings
  • ---Jeff Skibiski, Lakers.com
    PHOTOS

    STARTERS
    Los Angeles Lakers
    Guard

    D. Fisher
    Guard

    K. Bryant
    Forward

    V. Radmanovic
    Forward

    L. Odom
    Center

    P. Gasol
    Los Angeles Clippers
    Guard

    B. Knight
    Guard

    Q. Ross
    Forward

    C. Maggette
    Forward

    T. Thomas
    Center

    A. Williams

    GAME NOTES
    SEASON & SERIES NOTES; CONNECTIONS
    The Lakers lead their season series with the Clippers 1-0 after splitting last season’s series with the Clippers 2-2 for the third consecutive season. The two teams have met 174 times overall and on 108 occasions since the Clippers moved to Los Angeles. Overall, the Lakers have lost just two series in franchise history (1992-93 & 1974-75) to the Clippers. The Lakers are 5-5 in their last 10 games against the Clippers. At home against the Clippers, the Lakers are 13-4 all-time at STAPLES Center and have gone 7-3 in their last 10 home contests. On the road against the Clippers, the Lakers are 6-4 in their last 10 games as a visitor at STAPLES Center. Under head coach Phil Jackson, the Lakers are 22-7 versus the Clippers. In 43 career games versus the Clippers including 35 starts, Kobe Bryant is averaging 25.7 points. Additionally, Bryant has posted two 50-point games against the Clippers, most recently 4/12/07 vs. LAC (other: 50 points 1/7/06 @ LAC). Last season, Bryant averaged 37.0 points against the Clippers. Two Clippers (Elton Brand, Corey Maggette) remain from Lamar Odom’s time with the team while current Clippers head coach Mike Dunleavy led the Lakers to a 101-63 record in two seasons (1990-92) including a Western Conference Championship in 1990-91. Lakers forward Vladimir Radmanovic averaged 10.7 points, 5.7 rebounds and 29.5 minutes in 30 games (11 starts) with the Clippers in 2005-06 after being acquired from Seattle for Chris Wilcox. Clippers guard Dan Dickau (senior) and Lakers forward Ronny Turiaf (freshman) were college teammates during the 2001-02 season at Gonzaga.

    BRYANT, YOUNGEST EVER TO 20,000 CAREER POINTS, PASSES DAVID ROBINSON FOR 27th ON ALL-TIME LIST
    With 41 points 2/20 at Phoenix, Kobe Bryant moved past David Robinson (20,790) for 27th on the NBA’s all-time scoring list. Bryant, now with 20,815 points, trails Bob Pettit (20,880) by 65 points for 26th all-time. Walt Bellamy (20,941) is next on the list at 25th all-time. This season alone, Bryant has now moved past Terry Cummings, Walter Davis, Clifford Robinson, Bernard King, John Stockton, Tom Chambers, Mitch Richmond, George Gervin and Robinson.

    Additionally, at 29 years, 122 days, Bryant became the youngest player in NBA history to reach 20,000 career points and the third player ever to reach 20,000 points under the age of 30, ranking ahead of Wilt Chamberlain (29 years, 134 days) and Michael Jordan (29 years, 326 days). Bryant is the 31st player in NBA history to have reached 20,000 career points. Last season, Bryant became the youngest player to reach 17,000, 18,000 and 19,000 career points.

    Already the youngest player in league history to accumulate 10,000 – 19,000 career points, Bryant was the 29th fastest to 15,000, the 22nd fastest to 16,000, the 20th fastest to 17,000, the 16th fastest to 18,000, and the 15th fastest to 19,000 points in terms of games. Bryant’s 39-point game in New York December 23 was the 811th for his career, making him the 15th fastest player to 20,000 points in league history, five games shy of Larry Bird (806 games) for 14th. Wilt Chamberlain was the fastest ever to 20,000 career points, doing so in a mere 499 games. (statistical assistance courtesy of Elias Sports Bureau)

    BRYANT’S STREAK ENDS AT 51 STRAIGHT FREE THROWS
    From February 8 - 20 over a span of five games, Kobe Bryant converted 51 consecutive free-throws, going 14-of-16 from the charity stripe 2/8 at Orlando but converting his final 10 attempts, then connecting on 11-of-11 (2/10 @ MIA), 9-of-9 (2/11 @ CHA), 13-of-13 (2/13 @ MIN), 6-of-6 (2/19 vs. ATL) and his first two attempts 2/20 at Phoenix, ultimately finishing the game 8-of-10 from the charity stripe. The streak is the second longest in franchise history behind a string of 62 consecutive free-throws Bryant converted in 2006. Over a span of SEVEN games from January 11-22, 2006, Bryant went 12-of-13 from the charity stripe against Portland but converting his final seven attempts, then connecting on 8-of-8 (1/12 vs. CLE), 11-of-11 (1/14 @ GS), 9-of-9 (1/16 vs. MIA), 13-of-13 (1/19 @ SAC), 9-of-9 (1/20 @ PHO) and making his first five 1/22 vs. TOR, surpassing the then franchise record of 43 consecutive free throws which he himself established from March 4-10, 2005. Prior to Bryant’s runs of 62, 51 and 43 consecutive free-throws, the franchise record was held by Gail Goodrich who twice converted 40 straight during the 1972-73 season and again in 73-74. The NBA record for most consecutive free throws made is held by Michael Williams who while with the Timberwolves, made 97 straight from 3/24/93 – 11/9/93.

    BACK-TO-BACK
    Saturday night’s game against the Clippers is the first of a back-to-back set with the LA Clippers and Seattle. With their victories 2/19 vs. Atlanta and 2/20 at Phoenix, the Lakers swept their fifth set of back-to-backs this season, also having posted back-to-back victories 2/10 at Miami & 2/11 at Charlotte, 1/13 vs. Memphis & 1/14 at Seattle, 1/8 at Memphis & 1/9 at New Orleans and 12/4 at Minnesota & 12/5 at Denver. On the season, the Lakers are 9-3 in the 1st game and 8-4 in the 2nd game of back-tobacks. Los Angeles will play a total of 17 back-to-back sets during the 2007-08 season, the same as last season, after playing 19 sets of back-to-backs in each of the two seasons prior to 2006-07. Last season, the Lakers were 7-10 in the 1st game and 8-9 in the 2nd game of back-to-backs.

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