Lakers Gameday | 06/09/09 | Magic 108, Lakers 104 - NBA Finals Game 3; background-position:center; background-repeat:no-repeat;">
Team Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Final
Los Angeles Lakers 31 23 21 29 104
Orlando Magic 27 32 22 27 108

Lakers Game Leaders; background-position:center; background-repeat:no-repeat;">
Kobe Bryant Kobe Bryant
31 Points
Field Goals: 11 of 25
FG: 44%
Trevor Ariza Trevor Ariza
7 Rebounds
Defensive: 4
Offensive: 3
Kobe Bryant Kobe Bryant
8 Assists
3 Rebounds
4 Three Pointers
Pau Gasol Pau Gasol
23 Points
2 Blocks

  • Lakers 104, Magic 108: Postgame 3
  • Lakers - Magic Running Diary 3
  • Playoff Podcast #23: Matt Money Smith

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    Post-Game Numbers
  • 75 - Magic shooting percentage at halftime on a ridiculous 24-of-32, though the Lakers weren’t bad at all with 22-of-41 (53.7 percent) shots. L.A. actually had control for most of the half, but a late Magic charge produced a five-point cushion at the half.
  • 62.5 - Orlando’s Finals record shooting percentage for the game on 40-of-64 field goals. They also shot 23-of-30 (76.7 percent) from the line.
  • 38 - Combined points from Rafer Alston and Mickael Pietrus, who combined for just six points in Game 2 and 20 points in Game 1 (14 from Pietrus).
  • 18 - Second chance points for the Lakers to just five for the Magic, in part because of Orlando’s hot shooting (which didn’t allow any follow ups). The Lakers grabbed 11 offensive boards to five from Orlando.
  • 13 - Turnovers for both teams, which produced 16 points, respectively.
  • 11 - Points off L.A.’s bench from both Lamar Odom (eight of which came in the fourth quarter) and Jordan Farmar, who played 16 minutes off the bench. Shannon Brown didn’t see the floor, and Sasha Vujacic saw only three minutes off action at the end of the first and start of the second quarter.
  • 5 - Three pointers from the Magic on 14 attempts, meaning Orlando shot 35-of-50 on two-point field goals, otherwise known as 70 percent.
    --Mike Trudell,

    Los Angeles Lakers Orlando Magic
    Derek Fisher
    D. Fisher
    Kobe Bryant
    K. Bryant
    Trevor Ariza
    T. Ariza
    Pau Gasol
    P. Gasol
    Andrew Bynum
    A. Bynum
    Rafer Alston
    R. Alston
    Courtney Lee
    C. Lee
    Hedo Turkoglu
    H. Turkoglu
    Rashard Lewis
    R. Lewis
    Dwight Howard
    D. Howard

    Lakers Gameday Articles and Updates; background-repeat:repeat-y">
    Magic win Game 3, cut Lakers' lead to 2-1

    ORLANDO, Fla.(AP) Missing for two games, Orlando found its Magic touch.

    Making easy shots and tough ones from everywhere, the Magic won their first game in two visits to the NBA finals as Dwight Howard and Rashard Lewis scored 21 points apiece in a 108-104 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers in Game 3 on Tuesday night to pull within 2-1.

    Orlando shot a finals record 63 percent - including another finals record 75 percent in the first half - to snap a six-game finals losing streak and avoid falling into an 0-3 hole that no team in postseason history has been able to escape.

    Kobe Bryant, seeking a fourth title and his first since 2002, scored 31 points for the Lakers but the superstar had just 10 points in the second half and went only 4 of 15 from the field after the first quarter. He also missed five free throws, points that could have given the Lakers that 3-0 lead.

    Game 4 is Thursday night, and Game 5 - now necessary - will be at Amway Arena on Sunday.

    With their season 48 minutes from all but disappearing, the Magic, hosting their first finals game since 1995, had five players score at least 18 points. Rafer Alston, who was just 3 of 17 from the field n the first two games, had 20 and Hedo Turkoglu and Mickael Pietrus 18 each.

    "We've got to play like this,'' Howard said of the balanced scoring. "When guys are attacking we're tough to guard.

    "We moved the ball a lot tonight,'' he said. "We got some good shots. We didn't rush anything.''

    Pau Gasol scored 23 points but had just three rebounds and the Lakers were only 16 of 26 from the line.

    For a while, it appeared the Magic, who shot just 36 percent while dropping Games 1 and 2 at Staples Center, couldn't or wouldn't miss.

    From 20 feet, swish. From 10 feet, nothing but net. Layups, runners, banks, pull-ups, didn't matter. You name it, if it went up, more times than not it went in.

    "Well, it was going in the basket. That always works,'' Magic coach Stan Van Gundy said. "That formula's always tried and true.''

    Orlando made 24 of 32 shots in the first half and only cooled off a little in the third quarter as they entered the fourth at a 65 percent clip and clinging to an 81-75 lead.

    Bryant sat out the first 4:47 of the fourth, and when he finally subbed in, the Lakers were still down by five and unable to do anything to stop the Magic's marksmanship.

    But then, Orlando began to misfire at the worst time possible.

    After Pietrus was long with a wide-open 3, Gasol was fouled at the other end and made two free throws to make it 99 all with 2:41 remaining. Orlando's rowdy crowd, which waited 14 years for a chance to welcome the Larry O'Brien Trophy to town, grew nervous.

    "Oh, boy,'' muttered one fan near the media section.

    But Pietrus calmed fears by dunking in a rare miss to put the Magic up two, and when Lewis hit a jumper - it was originally called a 3 but replays showed his right foot was on the line - Orlando was up 104-101.

    Howard was called for a questionable foul on a drive by Bryant, who then split his two free throws. When he went to the Lakers bench during a timeout that followed, Bryant hit himself in the head for letting two more valuable points slip away.

    Orlando couldn't capitalize, though, and the Lakers got the ball back when Lewis missed a baseline jumper and the rebound went off him and out of bounds.

    Bryant, who scored 17 in the first quarter and 21 by halftime, then maybe tried to do too much. He crossed over to get past Pietrus, but Howard, the league's defensive player of the year known mostly for his blocks underneath, made like a point guard and tipped the ball away. Pietrus was fouled and made both to make it 106-102.

    The Lakers suddenly became desperate. Instead of working the ball in to Gasol or Lamar Odom, they fired away from outside.

    They couldn't shoot with the Magic.

    Bryant missed a 3, Trevor Ariza misfired on one, Bryant clanged another and Derek Fisher was long as the Lakers went 0 for 4 on a possession where they had to have points. Bryant did score on a putback with .05 seconds left, but it was too late and although there was still time left, confetti began to fall to the court.

    Orlando, which was swept by the Houston Rockets 14 years ago, could finally celebrate winning one on pro basketball's biggest stage.

    Bryant fouled Lewis with .02 seconds to go, and as Magic fans hugged and danced at an outcome they longed for, he dropped two more to seal it.

    The last time Orlando hosted a finals game, Howard was a 9-year-old kid in Atlanta and Shaquille O'Neal was the Magic's Superman.

    Outside the cramped arena, which had a red Superman cape hanging off one wall, Orlando fans, one of them dressed as Jack Nicholson and carrying a sign that read: "Jack, You Can't Handle The Truth,'' gathered on the sidewalks hoping this would be a night their team could get back into the series.

    They believed.

    This was their magic night.

    Notes: It was hardly a Hollywood crowd. Hollywood, Fla., maybe. But Tiger Woods, a Magic season ticket-holder and longtime Lakers fan, sat courtside a few seats from film director Spike Lee, whose neon green shirt made him look like a giant highlighter. Rapper 'Lil Wayne, Duke and U.S. Olympic coach Mike Krzyzewski and Bengals quarterback Carson Palmer were also on hand. ... Orlando's 0-6 start in the finals was the second longest in league history, surpassed only by the Baltimore Bullets, who dropped their first nine. ... Van Gundy, a college point guard at SUNY-Brockport, still holds the school record for free throw accuracy (154 of 171), a mark he dismisses. "I probably got to the line 120 times in four years,'' he said, "and I was playing for my father. So that tells you how good I was. I was an awful player.''

    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 Assistant Coach Brian Shaw took a few moments of his time to share with us what the Lakers have to concentrate on for this crucial Game 3 of the NBA Finals.


    ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) Kobe Bryant has changed his look.

    Gone is the teeth-baring, nose-flaring, eyes-on-the-prize scowl that the Los Angeles Lakers star showed again and again in Game 1 of the NBA finals. The intensity diminished after Game 2, his expression morphing into one of relief and sheer luck.

    A botched layup by Magic rookie Courtney Lee is perhaps the biggest reason why these finals are not tied and why Bryant isn't smiling even with his team up 2-0. That level of seriousness might be cause for Orlando to grimace.

    The Magic nearly returned from Los Angeles with the best-of-seven series tied. Instead, they're down 2-0, and now Bryant has a promise for Game 3 on Tuesday night.

    "We're about to kick it up,'' he said. "You'd better believe it. We're close. You see what I'm saying? This is the finals. We're going to be ready to go.''

    For all the bravado, the Lakers can be careless, a team with holes and an inability to finish off an opponent as a champion must. They let Houston extend a series despite the absence of Yao Ming. Denver outmuscled and outhustled a Lakers team that seemed to lose its enthusiasm until Game 6 of the conference finals.

    Los Angeles believes those days are over.

    "We're playing tougher,'' forward Pau Gasol said. "We understand what it takes to go get the championship.''

    This is a franchise closing in on its 15th title. It is facing Magic team still searching for its first finals victory. Bryants insists this is no time to get comfortable.

    "What's there to be happy about?'' he asked. "The job's not finished.''

    The Magic have had their shots - one in particular - to change the series.

    Lee missed a wide-open, alley-oop layup that would have won Game 2 at the fourth-quarter buzzer Sunday night. It was another chapter in a long history of Magic misery, one that now has them 0-6 in finals games.

    Call it the "alley-oops.'' This mistake, however, might hurt the most.

    Orlando has been able to come back from seemingly every heartbreak this season - injuries, four last-second losses in the playoffs and series deficits in two rounds. But this could be too tough a challenge. Only three teams have won a title after losing the first two games in the finals, most recently Miami over Dallas in 2006.

    "We've just got to go home and take care of business,'' Magic center Dwight Howard said. "The Lakers did a good job of protecting their home, and now it's our turn to do the same thing. We've been in some tough situations. We've just got to fight our way out.''

    Magic coach Stan Van Gundy led the Heat to start that 2005-06 season before stepping aside. He was still on the Heat payroll helping Pat Riley from afar.

    "Dallas never won another game,'' Van Gundy said. "You know, series can change.''

    The Magic would need quite a turnaround. Their backcourt has been dreadful. Rafer Alston and Jameer Nelson, who returned for the finals after being out since early February because of shoulder surgery, were so inconsistent that Van Gundy benched them for most of the fourth quarter to have 6-foot-10 forward Hedo Turkoglu run the point.

    The Magic had 20 turnovers, just 22 assists and no true ballhandler to make the Lakers pay for double-teaming Howard. With Nelson coming off the bench in place of reliable reserve Anthony Johnson and Alston having already said he wasn't pleased with his minutes in Game 1, Van Gundy might face another dilemma.

    "We were just trying to see if we could get somebody out there who would make shots off of the double teams and off the pick-and-rolls and things like that,'' Van Gundy said. "I thought our guys fought hard, but we couldn't make enough plays. And the 20 turnovers crushed us.''

    The Lakers know the Magic, too, could change in a moment.

    One of the streakiest teams in the league all season, Orlando has shot well at home. It plays with a carefree attitude, and Bryant says that's reason to be wary.

    "This is a very loosey-goosey team we're playing against,'' he said. "You seen some of the shots they hit. Those are tough shots - supposed to be tough shots. For them it's like shooting fish in a barrel. They're just thinking about Game 3, and so are we.''

    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

    Just by the hair of our chin-y, chin, chin.  We dodged a major bullet in game two but if we want to take a commanding 3 games to none lead in this series we must do a better job of defending the play Orlando calls “CHIN”.  In this play, the point throws the ball to Turkoglu who has popped high off of a brush screen by Lewis.  Magic Chin PlayAfter the point passes to the Turk, he cuts off the back screen (although the way Orlando runs this there is rarely a true, hard back screen) and goes to the weakside corner.  Howard then sets the high screen and roll with Turkoglu and they have scoring options from a variety of spots.  First, Turkoglu can drive to the basket or pull up for the jumper depending on how the defense is playing.  He can hit Howard (or Gortat) rolling hard to the basket.  Lewis stays up high on this play and if his man helps on the roller then Turkoglu can pass it back to Lewis for the open three.  Meanwhile there are shooters in each corner if the defense tries to help from those locations.  This is a very popular play in the NBA and with good reason.  With the skill sets of the Orlando players, they are perfectly suited to use this action frequently.

    Obviously another area that we must improve is our rebounding.  We were beaten on the boards 44-35.  The Magic converted their 10 offensive rebounds into 10 second chance points and we must do a better job in this area.  The rebounding stat often tells the story of which team is the aggressor.  If we want to put ourselves in a position to win this game we must absolutely be the aggressors.
    Click here to read all of the scouting reports against the Orlando Magic...



  • This is the Lakers 24th trip to the NBA Finals since moving to Los Angeles (30th overall) and 15th since Dr. Jerry Buss purchased the team prior to 1979-80.
  • In 23 trips to the NBA Finals since moving to Los Angeles prior to the 1960-61 season, the Lakers are 9-14 all-time (14-15 overall) and 8-6 under Buss.
  • The Lakers are 83-86 all-time in the NBA Finals (63-71 Los Angeles, 20-15 Minneapolis).
  • Since the NBA went to the 2-3-2 format prior to the 1985 Finals, the Lakers are 6-4 overall & 5-1 when holding home-court advantage (1987, 1988, 2000-02, 2004).
  • The Lakers are 11-3 all-time in the NBA Finals when holding home court advantage (7-3 Los Angeles, 4-0 Minneapolis).
  • The Lakers are now 15-15 in Game #1 of the NBA Finals (11-13 Los Angeles, 4-2 Minneapolis).
  • When winning Game #1 of the NBA Finals, the Lakers are 9-5 all-time (5-5 Los Angeles, 4-0 Minneapolis). Game 1 winner in NBA Finals history is 45-17 all-time … In 2-3-2 Finals format, Game 1 winner is 18-7 all-time.
  • The Lakers are now 14-16 in Game #2 of the NBA Finals (12-12 Los Angeles, 2-4 Minneapolis).
  • When winning Game #1 and #2 of the NBA Finals, the Lakers are 4-1 all-time (3-1 Los Angeles, 1-0 Minneapolis).
  • The Lakers are 17-12 in Game #3 of the NBA Finals (12-11 Los Angeles, 5-1 Minneapolis).
  • When leading 2-0, the Lakers are 2-3 in Game #3 of the NBA Finals (1-3 Los Angeles, 1-0 Minneapolis).
    The Lakers 101-96 victory over the Magic June 7 marked the 13th time (5th straight season) the home team has won the first two games since the NBA Finals went to the 2-3-2 format in 1985. In 11 of the previous 12 instances, the home team winning both Games One and Two has gone on to win the NBA Championship (the lone exception since 1985 came in 2006, when Dallas won the first two games at home but lost the next four straight to Miami). In NBA Finals history, a team has now gone up 2-0 in The Finals 31 times, with only three teams ever coming back from a 0-2 deficit to win the NBA Title (1969 Boston Celtics, 1977 Portland Trail Blazers, 2006 Miami Heat).

    With the Lakers and Magic tied up 15-15 at the end of the first quarter in Game 2 on June 7, the two teams combined for just 30 first quarter points, establishing an NBA Finals record for the fewest combined points in a first quarter since the inception of the shot clock in 1954-55. The prior Finals first quarter combined low was 31 points, when the Celtics led the Lakers 16-15 after the first period in Game Four of the NBA Finals on 4/29/69. Overall, the fewest combined points in a quarter in the Finals since the inception of the shot clock is 27, which has occurred three times, most recently by the Spurs (15) and Cavaliers (12) in Game Three of the 2007 Finals.

    With Kobe Bryant’s 40-point effort in Game 1 of the 2009 NBA Finals June 4, there have now been 46 40-plus point games in the history of the NBA Finals, 26 of which have been accomplished by Lakers. Jerry West leads all Lakers with 10 40-plus point performances in the NBA Finals, followed by Shaquille O’Neal (5), Elgin Baylor (4), George Mikan (2 with Minneapolis), Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (1), Kobe Bryant (1), Wilt Chamberlain (1), Magic Johnson (1) and James Worthy (1). Elgin Baylor holds the NBA Finals record for most points in a game (61), established 4/14/62 @ Boston.; background-repeat:repeat-y">