Lakers Gameday | 03/31/09 | Bobcats 94, Lakers 84


Lakers LogoLos Angeles Lakers
(58-16)
Western Conference Standing : 1
Streak: Lost 2

Lakers Game day

Spurs LogoCharlotte Bobcats
(34-40)
Eastern Conference Standing : 9
Streak: Won 3

Injury Report Injury Report
  • Kobe Bryant (sprained right ankle) is day-to-day.
  • Andrew Bynum (torn MCL, right knee) is out.
  • http://nba.com/media/lakers/scores_bg.jpg); background-repeat:repeat-y;">
    Team 1 2 3 4 F
    Los Angeles Lakers 24 20 20 20 84
    Charlotte Bobcats 25 18 25 26 94
    • None

    POST-GAME NUMBERS

  • 39 - Percentage from the field by the Lakers who just couldn't get into a scoring rhythm against the Bobcats. Derek Fisher was the most efficient player for the Lakers', making three of his four attempts. The Bobcats in the other hand shot 52% from the field and made seven their 17 attempts from beyond the arc.
  • +12 - The difference in offensive rebounds which favored the Lakers as they out boarded the Bobcats 18 to 6. The Lakers ended their night with 42 rebounds while the Bobcats ended theirs with 40 rebounds.
  • 7 - Straight double-double games for Pau Gasol, who was a few assists short of a triple-double against the Bobcats. Gasol finished the night with 16 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists.
  • +6 - The Lakers kept pressure on the ball all game and caused the Bobcats to turn the ball over six more times than the Lakers. Bobcats ended the game with 16 turnovers while the Lakers only had 10 in the game.
  • 4 - Total free throws made by the Lakers who only went to the line six times during the entire game. The Bobcats however made the trip 22 times and converted on 17.
  • ---Francisco Gomez, Lakers.com
    LAKERS BEST
    Points
    Kobe Bryant
    K. Bryant
    25
    Rebounds
    Pau Gasol
    P. Gasol
    11
    Assists
    Pau Gasol
    P. Gasol
    7
    Plus/Minus
    Shannon Brown
    S. Brown
    +5

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    STARTERS
    Los Angeles Lakers Charlotte Bobcats
    Guard
    Derek Fisher
    D. Fisher
    Guard
    Kobe Bryant
    K. Bryant
    Forward
    Trevor Ariza
    T. Ariza
    Forward
    Lamar Odom
    L. Odom
    Center
    Pau Gasol
    P. Gasol
    Guard
    Raymond Felton
    R. Felton
    Guard
    Raja Bell
    R. Bell
    Forward
    Gerald Wallace
    G. Wallace
    Forward
    Boris Diaw
    B. Diaw
    Center
    Emeka Okafor
    E. Okafor

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    Wallace, Bobcats beat Lakers, again, 94-84

    CHARLOTTE, N.C.(AP) Gerald Wallace had 21 points and 13 rebounds, and the Charlotte Bobcats continued their surprising mastery of the Los Angeles Lakers in a 94-84 victory on Tuesday night.

    Raymond Felton added 16 points as the Bobcats completed a season sweep of the Western Conference leaders, who have lost six of seven to Charlotte.

    Failing to reach 100 points in consecutive games for the first time since November, the Lakers dropped their second straight. Kobe Bryant scored 25 points, but hit just 11 of 28 shots. Lamar Odom added 20 points as the Lakers dropped to 4-2 on their seven-game road trip.

    The Bobcats, who set a franchise record with their 34th win, dominated the fourth quarter and held the Lakers to 39 percent shooting to move within one game of the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

    After Bryant had two buckets in an 8-0 run to get the Lakers within 80-78 with 5:32 left, Boris Diaw hit a floater in the lane and Raja Bell made a 3-pointer on the next possession.

    Wallace, playing perhaps the best basketball of his career, then blew by Luke Walton for a reverse layup. Wallace ripped the ball away from Walton on the next possession. The Lakers never recovered, and fell three games behind Cleveland for the NBA's best record and home-court advantage for a possible finals matchup.

    Indiana's victory over Chicago moved the Bobcats within a game of the eighth-place Bulls.

    Their playoff push - and the Lakers' lone trip to Charlotte this season - produced an overflow crowd of 19,568, the largest for a Bobcats game in their 4-year-old arena.

    Even elusive Bobcats managing partner Michael Jordan showed up, sitting in a courtside seat that has been empty for several weeks.

    Jordan, likely to be voted into the Basketball Hall of Fame on Monday, was spotted coming out of the visiting coaches locker room just an hour before tipoff with Phil Jackson, his coach for his six NBA-title seasons in Chicago.

    "Good luck, Phil Jackson,'' Jordan said as the Lakers coach stopped for his pregame media availability.

    "He knows his team has to win games,'' replied Jackson. "Right now he's trying to psych us out.''

    Surprisingly, the Bobcats have done that to the Lakers despite never finishing better than 33-49 in their first four seasons.

    Wallace, who sustained a partially collapsed lung and broken rib on a flagrant foul by Andrew Bynum in Charlotte's double-overtime win in Los Angeles in January, hit 10 of 16 shots and added four assists.

    After shooting 35 percent and scoring a season-low 76 points in Atlanta on Sunday, the Lakers had an extended practice on Monday, but their offense remained stagnant.

    Bryant shot just 7-for-19 from the field while playing through an upset stomach on Sunday. He was on the court shooting more than two hours before Tuesday's game, but was just 4-for-14 at halftime as the Lakers clung to a 44-43 lead.

    Bryant heated up in the third quarter, hitting consecutive 3-pointers to put Los Angeles ahead 60-53 with 4:34 left.

    Then Charlotte came alive. As the Lakers got sloppy, the Bobcats went on a 19-4 run, with D.J. Augustin's layup giving Charlotte a 72-64 lead with 10:53 left in the fourth quarter.

    The Bobcats stretched the lead to 80-70 on Augustin's 3 with 7:47 left.

    Notes: Lakers F Adam Morrison never got off the bench in his first game back to Charlotte since the Feb. 7 trade. Morrison chatted with several ex-teammates in pregame warmups. ... Charlotte F Vladimir Radmanovic, acquired for Morrison, had a bizarre basket early in the fourth quarter when a pass bounced off his hands, went high in the air, off the glass and in. ... The Bobcats signed G Dontell Jefferson for the rest of the season, the day his second 10-day contract expired.


    Copyright 2008 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 - BOBCATS PREVIEW

    The Los Angeles Lakers already have clinched the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference, but they didn't look like an elite team in their last game.

    That has been a familiar sight for the Charlotte Bobcats, who have routinely kept Los Angeles from playing its best.

    The Lakers look to bounce back from their worst offensive performance of the season and avoid their sixth loss in seven games against the Bobcats when the clubs meet Tuesday night in Charlotte.

    Los Angeles (58-15) has been the West's most dominant team all season, riding MVP candidate Kobe Bryant and fellow All-Star Pau Gasol to the top of the conference and the second-best record in the NBA.

    The Lakers, though, haven't had any answers for the Bobcats (33-40) in recent years. Though Charlotte hasn't finished a season with a winning record since joining the league as an expansion team in 2004, it's won five of the last six meetings with Los Angeles, a perennial contender.

    With a 5-4 all-time record against the Lakers, the Bobcats are one of only two teams - alongside Boston - with a winning record against them since they moved to Los Angeles in 1960.

    In the first matchup this season, Charlotte won 117-110 in double overtime Jan. 27 in Los Angeles. It was the third time in five meetings the teams have needed overtime, and the Bobcats have won all three.

    After that most recent loss, Lakers coach Phil Jackson couldn't explain why Charlotte has had his team's number.

    "You know, it's the way the roll of the dice goes, and this was one of those games," he said.

    Charlotte forward Boris Diaw had 23 points, nine rebounds and nine assists in that January win, and point guard Raymond Felton added 21 points, 11 rebounds and nine assists.

    Bryant had 38 points before fouling out late in the first overtime. He's averaging 35.3 points in eight career games against the Bobcats but has only won three.

    Bryant was nursing a stomach ailment and struggled through the Lakers' last game, an 86-76 loss at Atlanta on Sunday. Los Angeles was held to a season-low point total and 35.0 percent shooting for its second-lowest mark of 2008-09.

    Gasol had 21 points and 11 rebounds while going 7-for-10 from the field, but the other starters combined to shoot 29.1 percent (16-for-55) as the Lakers fell to 4-1 on their season-high seven-game road trip.

    Bryant scored 17 points and went 7-for-19 from the field after getting limited to 14 points and 5-for-19 shooting in a win at New Jersey on Friday night. Bryant, averaging 27.2 points, isn't expected to miss any time with the stomach problem, but it's unclear if it will affect his game Tuesday.

    "My stomach's OK now," Bryant said after Sunday's game. "When my medicine wears off, it's going to be interesting."

    The Bobcats, two games behind eighth-place Chicago in their chase for the first postseason berth in team history, can reach a franchise-record win total with a victory over the Lakers. They've matched their previous best of 33, set in 2006-07, by winning five of their last seven.

    Gerald Wallace had 23 points, nine rebounds and eight assists in a 96-85 victory over New York on Saturday.

    Wallace is averaging 20.2 points, 9.1 rebounds and 3.8 assists while shooting 59.7 percent from the field over his last 12 games. He credits first-year Bobcats coach Larry Brown for his recent success.

    "I'm learning every day and I'm getting a whole lot better," Wallace said. "I see a lot of the things (Brown) was complaining and fussing about and going off on me about at the beginning of training camp. I'm starting to see the effects they've had on me as a player. Every day I learn something new from him."


    Copyright 2008 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
    GAME NOTES
    NOTES & CONNECTIONS

    The Lakers currently trail the season series with Charlotte 0-1 after splitting last season’s series 1-1. The two teams have met nine times in all with the Lakers trailing the all-time series 4-5. The Bobcats are one of only two teams in the NBA that the Lakers have a .500 or losing record against (Boston). At STAPLES Center, the Lakers are 2-3 all-time against the Bobcats while in Charlotte, the Lakers have gone 2-2. Under head coach Phil Jackson, the Lakers are 2-5 against Charlotte. In their most recent meeting at STAPLES Center, the Bobcats defeated the Lakers 110-117 in double-overtime, marking the third OT contest (2nd multi-overtime game) between the two teams in the brief series history. In 2006-07, the Lakers lost on the road to the Bobcats 124-133 in triple overtime to conclude a six-game road trip. It was the Lakers third ever triple-overtime game in the Los Angeles era and the team’s longest game since a four-overtime contest in January of 1980 at Cleveland. In their second meeting that season, Kobe Bryant connected on a game-tying three with 1.6 seconds to play, forcing overtime. The Lakers, however, were outscored 15-6 in the extra period, dropping their first ever game to the Bobcats at home. In eight career games against Charlotte, Kobe Bryant is averaging 35.3 points with a high-game of 58 points coming in the triple-overtime contest 12/29/06. On February 7, the Lakers acquired Adam Morrison and Shannon Brown from Charlotte in exchange for Vladimir Radmanovic. Additionally, Michael Jordan, Managing Member of Basketball Operations for the Bobcats, won six NBA Championships with the Chicago Bulls under current Lakers head coach Phil Jackson.

    LAKERS SCOUTING REPORT

    The Charlotte Bobcats are fighting to get the eighth playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. We must understand this fact because the Bobcats will play extremely hard. This team bought into Coach Brown’s system and they seem to have figured out their roles as they make this late season push.

    Defensively, the Cats like to apply pressure after free throws, timeouts, and at the start of quarters. They will bring this pressure up-court and then try to deny our wing entries so we must be ready to bring our offense up a little higher and the use of our automatic pressure release options will be critical. Wallace loves to run through passes in order to get the steal so the passer must be crisp with the pass (and use some solid ball fakes – fake a pass to make a pass) and the receiver must meet the ball. Their activity level on the defensive end increases when they go to their small lineup – Wallace plays the 4 – and this is the lineup that hurt us last time we played them. The bottom line is we must use their aggressiveness against them.

    On the offensive end Coach Brown keeps it somewhat simple. They stress floor balance and are at their best when Felton, Augustin, and Diaw are able to penetrate. Felton and Augustin do a good job of pushing the ball and Wallace gives them a very good lane runner as well as a lob candidate at all times. Raja Bell and former Laker Vladi Radmanovic will run to the three point line and spot up waiting for their little guards to break down the defense, penetrate, and kick it out to them. The bottom line on this end of the floor is that we cannot allow them to do what they do well – i.e. Bell = catch and shoot; Diaw = drive right; Okafor = ducking in and offensive rebounding; Wallace = slashing/cutting/driving/and posting on drops.

    It is important that we get back on the right track tonight in Charlotte. Once again this game will be a physical as well as a mental battle. We have been on the road for 11 days and we must overcome the mental fatigue that sets in towards the end of a long trip. We have two games left and we must take care of business.
    Read more...

    LAKERS UPDATES

    LAKERS CLINCH #1 SEED IN THE WEST
    With their March 27 victory over the Nets, the Lakers clinched the #1 seed in the West to secure home-court advantage throughout the Western Conference playoffs. Since the NBA went to the Conference format prior to the 1970-71 season, the Lakers have held the #1 seed 14 times prior to this season (1972, 1977, 1980, 1982-90, 2000, 2008), winning the West 11 times and the NBA Championship on seven occasions. The Lakers now own the #1 seed for the TENTH time since the current format featuring 16 teams was instituted prior to the 1984 NBA Playoffs. Additionally, with their March 12 victory over San Antonio, the Lakers clinched the Pacific Division title. In meeting their magic number, the Lakers marked their 56th postseason appearance in 61 NBA seasons, their 20th Pacific Division title in their 39th season in the division and their 28th playoff berth in 30 seasons since Dr. Jerry Buss purchased the team prior to the 1979-80 season.

    PHIL JACKSON PASSES PAT RILEY FOR MOST GAMES COACHED IN FRANCHISE HISTORY
    With 728 games on the sidelines as head coach of the Lakers, Phil Jackson passed Pat Riley (727) for the most games coached in franchise history on March 27 at New Jersey, after tying Riley a day earlier on March 26 at Detroit. Additionally, Jackson passed the team’s first ever head coach, John Kundla (725), for the second most games coached in franchise history on March 23 at Oklahoma City after matching Kundla March 21 at Chicago, where he spent nine seasons as the Bulls head coach while accumulating a 545-193 (.738) regular season record and six NBA Championships.

    OPPONENTS UNDER 80
    With their 92-77 victory over the Pistons March 26, the Lakers held their opponent to under 80 points for the THIRD time this season, but for the first time since opening the season with consecutive victories over the Blazers (96-76) and the Clippers (117-79). Only once have the Lakers held an opponent under 80 in three consecutive games since the inception of the shot clock in 1954-55, doing so from January 9-14 of 2004. The NBA record for consecutive games in which an opponent has scored fewer than 80 points is eight games, established by the Detroit Pistons from March 4-21 of 2004. For a season, the 2003-04 San Antonio Spurs hold the league record with 28 such games while the Lakers franchise record is eight games also established in 2003-04.

    HITTING THE ROAD
    Holding the league’s best road record at 27-9, the Lakers are currently 4-0 on their season-long 7-game road trip and have won their last SIX away games total. With their victory February 8 over the Cavaliers, the Lakers concluded their 6-game road trip a perfect 6-0 and departed Cleveland with the NBA’s best road record (18-5, .783) after averaging 116.5 points per game on the Eastern swing. The win also helped the Lakers become just the THIRD Lakers team since neutral site games were eliminated in 1974-75 to win six or more games on a single road trip. By ending the Cavaliers 23-game home win streak, the Lakers matched their most successful road trip ever; a 6-0 trip in February of 2000 that was part of a 19-game win streak for the team. The only other Lakers 6-plus win road trip came last season when the Lakers concluded a franchise record 9-game continuous road trip with a record of 7-2, compiling the league’s best record ever in nine or more continuous road games since neutral-site games were eliminated in 1974-75. (San Antonio went 8-1 on a 2003 road trip but came home before it ended).