Lakers Gameday | 04/07/09 | Lakers 122, Kings 104


Lakers LogoLos Angeles Lakers
(62-16)
Western Conference Standing : 1
Streak: Won 4

Lakers Game day
Kings LogoSacramento Kings
(16-61)
Western Conference Standing : 15
Streak: Lost 5

Injury Report Injury Report
  • Andrew Bynum (torn MCL, right knee) is doubtful.
  • Derek Fisher (sore left foot) is probable.
  • http://nba.com/media/lakers/scores_bg.jpg); background-repeat:repeat-y;">
    Team 1 2 3 4 F
    Los Angeles Lakers 31 40 25 26 122
    Sacramento Kings 37 18 31 18 104
    • Kevin Martin (sore left ankle) - Out

    POST-GAME NUMBERS

  • 50 - Total rebounds for a Lakers team that was active on both ends of the floor all game. The Lakers had six more defensive rebounds than the Kings to win the rebound battle by five, 50 to 45.
  • 42 - The Lakers "Bench Mob" did a great job of closing out the game for the Lakers tonight, scoring 42 points and giving the starters some well deserved rest.
  • 9 - A season high in assists for Luke Walton who in his first eight minutes of playing time had already accumulated four assists. Walton also had 11 points and three rebounds to go along with his assists.
  • +7 - A clean game played by the Lakers who only turned the ball over six times. In addition to that, they were able to create 13 turnovers on the Kings, to end +7 in the turnover department.
  • 6 - The Lakers had great balanced team scoring as six players scored in double figures tonight with Pau Gasol leading the way with 26 points.
    ---Francisco Gomez, Lakers.com
  • LAKERS BEST
    Points
    Pau Gasol
    P. Gasol
    26
    Rebounds
    Pau Gasol
    P. Gasol
    12
    Assists
    Luke Walton
    L. Walton
    5
    Plus/Minus
    Luke Walton
    L. Walton
    +32

    Box Score | Play-by-Play | Quotes

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  • PREVIOUS GAMES
  • 12/12/08: Lakers 112, Kings 103
  • 12/09/08: Kings 113, Lakers 101
  • 11/23/08: Lakers 118, Kings 108

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    STARTERS
    Los Angeles Lakers Sacramento Kings
    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
    Beno Udrih
    B. Udrih
    Guard
    Francisco Garcia
    F. Garcia
    Forward
    andres_nocioni
    A. Nocioni
    Forward
    jason_thompson
    J. Thompson
    Center
    Spencer Hawes
    S. Hawes

    • POST-GAME
    • GAME PREVIEW
    • GAME NOTES
    • SCOUTING REPORT
    • LAKERS UPDATES
    Lakers beat Kings to move within half-game of Cavs

    SACRAMENTO, Calif.(AP) Pau Gasol scored 26 points, Kobe Bryant added 22 and the Los Angeles Lakers overcame a sluggish start to beat the Sacramento Kings 122-104 Tuesday night and move within a half-game of Cleveland for the best record in the NBA.

    Los Angeles fell behind by 12 points midway through the first quarter before finding its stride against the NBA's worst team and avenging a surprising loss earlier this season to the Kings at Arco Arena.

    Losing again to Sacramento could have seriously damaged the Lakers' hopes for home-court advantage throughout the playoffs. Los Angeles (62-16) still needs the Cavaliers (62-15) to lose at least once down the stretch to win the race. The Lakers hold the tiebreaker by virtue of sweeping the season series against Cleveland.

    Lamar Odom added 15 points and 11 rebounds, Trevor Ariza scored 14 points and Gasol had 12 rebounds to go with his 11-for-16 shooting against overmatched Sacramento. Los Angeles has won four straight since losing back-to-back games in Charlotte and Atlanta.

    Spencer Hawes had 21 points and 15 rebounds, Jason Thompson added 18 points and 11 boards, and Francisco Garcia scored 19 for the Kings (16-61), who lost their fifth straight game and have already set a franchise record for most losses in a season.

    What once was a heated rivalry between the two California teams has cooled off in recent years as the Kings have fallen from a perennial contender to a lottery regular. There were many Lakers fans in attendance, chanting "M-V-P!'' for Bryant throughout the game and booing a "Beat L.A.!'' cheer from the Kings contingent.

    After a first quarter in which the Lakers allowed Sacramento open looks on almost every trip, the game had little resemblance to those heated contests earlier in the decade.

    Coach Phil Jackson was so disgusted after the Lakers blew most of a 19-point lead in the fourth quarter of an 88-85 win over the Clippers that he didn't take questions from reporters. He couldn't have been much happier with what he saw in the opening minutes against Sacramento.

    The Kings came out firing, making 11 of their first 15 shots to open a 29-17 lead less than seven minutes into the game on a three-point play by Thompson. Sacramento then missed its next five shots but still took a 37-31 lead into the second quarter after Bobby Jackson's jumper with 4 seconds remaining.

    The lead proved to be short-lived, as the Lakers tightened up defensively in the second quarter and the reserves took advantage of the Sacramento's shoddy zone defense. Los Angeles used runs of 10-0 with Bryant on the bench and then 12-0 with its star back in the game to open up a double-digit lead.

    Shannon Brown's steal and layup in the closing seconds capped the 40-point quarter and gave the Lakers a 71-55 lead at the half. Brown, Luke Walton, Jordan Farmar and Josh Powell scored 22 points combined off the bench in the quarter.

    Notes: Lakers C Andrew Bynum did not make the trip to Sacramento but could return to the lineup later this week for the first time since tearing a right knee ligament on Jan. 31. ... Kings leading scorer Kevin Martin missed his third straight game with a sore left ankle and is day-to-day. ... Kevin Johnson, the mayor of Sacramento and a former NBA All-Star, attended the game.


    Copyright 2009 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 - KINGS PREVIEW

    If the Los Angeles Lakers thought they could coast through a stretch of games against lesser opponents, they found out quickly they can't afford to take any team lightly.

    After barely hanging on to beat one of the league's worst teams, the Lakers look to continue their push for the top overall seed of the playoffs Tuesday night against the NBA-worst Sacramento Kings.

    With five games remaining, Los Angeles (61-16) has clinched home-court advantage for the Western Conference playoffs and is trying to earn it throughout the postseason. The Lakers are one game back of East-leading Cleveland but own the tiebreaker, having swept the Cavaliers in the season series.

    While Los Angeles is one of the league's elite teams, it looked sluggish down the stretch of Sunday's 88-85 home win over the woeful Los Angeles Clippers.

    The Lakers appeared to be on the verge of an easy win, leading by 19 with six minutes remaining in regulation, but the Clippers went on a 20-2 run to pull within one point with a minute to go. Pau Gasol's driving layup and a pair of free throws by Kobe Bryant in the final minute saved the Lakers from an embarrassing collapse.

    Although Los Angeles managed to win its third straight and improved to 33-5 at home, coach Phil Jackson was not pleased.

    "I was not happy with the ballgame,'' he said. "We didn't do the game plan the right way.''

    The Lakers, who host Denver on Thursday before visiting Portland on Friday, were held to nearly 19 points below their season average. Bryant finished with 18 on 5-of-15 shooting.

    "Disappointed,'' Bryant said about the close call. "We didn't play as hard defensively during the stretch.

    "Offense comes and goes. Sometimes you hit shots, sometimes you don't. You got to defend. Our offense let us down, our defense kept the lead."

    Bryant and the Lakers look to get back on track offensively against a Sacramento team that's allowed an average of 115.3 points in its last 12 games.

    While the Kings have lost 11 of 13 and trail Los Angeles by 44 1/2 games in the standings, the Lakers aren't going to overlook them. Los Angeles beat the Kings in the two meetings at Staples Center this season but lost 113-101 at Sacramento on Dec. 9.

    The Kings (16-60) fell to Golden State 105-100 on Sunday to set a single-season franchise record for defeats, breaking the mark held by the 1989-90 club.

    Like the Clippers on Sunday, Sacramento also had a late comeback fall short. The Kings trimmed a 17-point fourth-quarter deficit to three on Jason Thompson's jump shot with 1:10 to go, but could get no closer.

    "We came out with no energy and no effort,'' Sacramento interim coach Kenny Natt said. "Basically, we just goofed off in this game for three quarters, and then decided to play. By that time, they've already made their move and had the cushion. That's the story of our team right now.''

    Bobby Jackson had 17 points to lead seven players in double figures for the Kings, who lost their fourth in a row.

    Sacramento could be without starting center Spencer Hawes against the Lakers after he left in the first half Sunday with double vision after being poked in the eye. Hawes, listed as day-to-day, had averaged 17.5 points and 8.0 rebounds in his previous four games.


    Copyright 2009 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 lead their season series with Sacramento 2-1 after winning last season’s series with the Kings 3-1 for the second consecutive season. The two franchises have met 268 times overall and 104 times since the Kings moved to Sacramento. The Lakers lead the all-time series with the Kings 182-86 (74-30 vs. Sacramento). In their last 10 meetings, the Lakers are 7-3 against Sacramento. The Lakers are 13-7 all-time against the Kings at STAPLES Center and have gone 6-4 in their last 10 home contests. At ARCO Arena, the Lakers have gone 5-5 in their last 10 games and had their four game win streak in Sacramento snapped earlier this season with a 101-113 loss 12/9/08. Last season, on April 6, 2008, the Lakers defeated the Kings by 22 points, their largest victory in Sacramento since a 23-point win 3/23/89. Two seasons ago in 2006-07, the Lakers were whistled for 42 personal fouls in their 132-128 overtime victory January 4, 2007 at ARCO Arena, establishing a new Los Angeles era franchise record. The Lakers last committed 42 personal fouls back on 2/17/57 versus St. Louis when the team was still in Minneapolis. Additionally, the Lakers and Kings combined for 80 personal fouls and 102 free throws on the night, which was, at the time, the most fouls committed by two teams in more than seven years. Under head coach Phil Jackson, the Lakers are 22-13 against the Kings. In 46 career games against the Kings including 38 starts, Kobe Bryant is averaging 25.8 points. The Lakers and Kings haven’t met in the postseason since the 2002 Western Conference Finals. While Kobe Bryant and Derek Fisher both played in that series, only Bobby Jackson remains on their roster from that season following an offseason trade that brought Jackson back to Sacramento.

    LAKERS SCOUTING REPORT

    The Kings bring a much different team to this game than the one we saw on December 12th, the last time we played them.  They have changed coaches and traded players.  They are 16-60 and have lost four in a row and six out of seven.  Their best player, Kevin Martin, has missed the last couple of games with a sore ankle.  What we must understand is that none of that matters when the ball is tossed up tonight.  The Sacramento crowd that was small for many games this season will fill Arco Arena and will be loud.  They still have players who have had big games against us in the past and are capable of making one last big stand this season.  Once again this game will be more about us bringing the right mentality and executing our game plan in order to continue our improvement as we march towards the playoffs. 

    The two main new players that Sacramento brought in via the mid-season trades are Andres Nocioni and Rashad McCants.  Nocioni is an aggressive, active player who can shoot the three but is very dangerous on his strong drives to the basket.  His energy level can help lift his teammates and can cause problems for the opponent.  McCants comes off the bench to provide offense and he is also a three point threat.  These players combined with Beno Udrih, Bobby Jackson, Francisco Garcia and the improved Spencer Hawes, give the Kings enough talent to beat us if we overlook them.

    When Kenny Natt took over for Reggie Theus as coach of the Kings he simplified their playbook.  They are back to running some of the same high post options that came to be called “Sacramento Action” as a generic term around the league.  These sequences allow players such as Martin to do what they do best – move without the ball in order to create easy open shots.  Our defensive communication will  be put to the test tonight.
    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 10th 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.

    60 WIN SEASONS
    With 60 victories this season, the Lakers have now reached the 60-win mark for the 11th time in franchise history, having previously done so in 1971-72, 1972-73, 1979-80, 1984-85, 1985-86, 1986-87, 1987-88, 1989-90, 1997-98 and 1999-2000. Since Dr. Jerry Buss took over the team prior to the 1979-80 season, the Lakers have now posted 9 60+ win seasons, while marking Phil Jackson’s 7th 60-win season in 18 seasons as an NBA head coach.

    THIRD TIME’S A CHARM
    With their victory April 1 at Milwaukee, the Lakers snapped their FOURTH two-game losing streak of the season. Since the acquisition of Pau Gasol on February 1, 2008, the Lakers have yet to lose three consecutive games. Los Angeles has now lost two-straight games EIGHT times overall since acquiring Gasol (6 regular season, 2 playoff streaks). In fact, the Lakers last three-game losing streak came just a week before the trade, with consecutive losses at San Antonio, at Dallas and vs. Cleveland from 1/23/08 through 1/27/08. Earlier this season, the Lakers defeated Memphis March 3 to stop their third two-game losing streak of the season, Cleveland January 19 to snap their second two-game losing streak of the season and Memphis December 22 to snap their first two-game losing streak of the season.

    POINTS ABOUT POINTS
    The Lakers are currently ranked 3rd in the NBA in points scored (106.9) and 13th in the NBA in points allowed (99.4) through 76 games this season. Through their first seven games of the season (7-0), the Lakers allowed just 86.7 points and held their opponents under 90 five times including two sub-80 games. Yet for the majority of the season, over their last 69 games (53-16), the Lakers have surrendered an average of 100.8 points per game (6955). Over their last SEVEN games, however, the Lakers have held their opponent under 100 points in each game, with opponents averaging 88.6 points per game (620) over the current stretch. Only FOUR times this season, including their opening 7-game stretch, have the Lakers held three consecutive opponents under 100 points: (12/22 @ MEM, 12/23 @ NO, 12/25 vs. BOS), (1/19 vs. CLE, 1/21 @ LAC, 1/22 vs. WAS, 1/25 vs. SA) and their current streak (3/24 @ OKC, 3/26 @ DET, 3/27 @ NJ, 3/29 @ ATL, 3/31 @ CHA, 4/1 @ MIL, 4/3 vs. HOU), going 19-2 in those games. When holding opponents under 100 points this season, the Lakers are 35-5 overall.

    Since moving to LA, the Lakers have led the NBA in scoring four times (1965-66, 1971-72, 1985-86, 1997-98) but have never led the NBA in fewest points allowed. Additionally, the Lakers are ranked 3rd in the NBA in point differential, winning by an average of 7.5 points per game through 76 games this season. The franchise record for point differential in a season is +12.3 established by the 1971-72 Lakers. The next highest mark in franchise history was +9.3 by the 1986-87 Lakers, making the ‘71-72 season the only year in which a Lakers team has ever averaged victory by double-figures. Phil Jackson’s 1999-00 Lakers rank 3rd on this list with a +8.5 margin of victory.

    PHIL JACKSON PASSES PAT RILEY FOR MOST GAMES COACHED IN FRANCHISE HISTORY
    Currently with 732 games on the sidelines as head coach of the Lakers, Phil Jackson is now the team’s longest tenured head coach ever after passing Pat Riley (727) for the most games coached in franchise history on March 27 at New Jersey. Just two games earlier, 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. Jackson equaled 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.