Lakers Gameday | 01/08/10 | Blazers

Box Score
Play by Play

2 Fast break points for the Lakers, who had trouble creating easy baskets throughout the evening.

9 Straight losses for the Lakers in Portland.

29 More free throw attempts for Portland than L.A., resulting in 27 more points.

37 Field goal attempts by Kobe Bryant, of which he made 14 (38.8 percent) for 32 points. The avulsion fracture on his right index finger was clearly bothering him once again.

60 Percent shooting for the Blazers in the first quarter, helping create a lead that they’d never relinquish.

Mike Trudell, Lakers.com

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  • GAME RECAP
  • QUOTES
  • GAME PREVIEW
  • INJURY REPORT
  • GAME NOTES

Roy scores 32 to lead Blazers over Lakers 107-98

By ANNE M. PETERSON

Posted Jan 09 2010 12:46AM

PORTLAND, Ore.(AP) Brandon Roy scored 32 points and the Portland Trail Blazers won their ninth straight at home against the Los Angeles Lakers with a 107-98 victory on Friday night.

The Blazers own the NBA's longest home winning streak against the defending NBA champions.

Kobe Bryant had 32 points and eight rebounds for the Lakers, who trailed by as many as 20 points in the fourth quarter but cut the margin to single digits in the final minutes.

The victory is the latest display of Portland's surprising resiliency despite a rash of injuries. The Blazers have won seven of their last 10 games.

The team has lost both of its big men - Greg Oden and Joel Przybilla - to knee injuries for the rest of the season.

The Blazers are also without starting forward Nicolas Batum, who underwent shoulder surgery just before the start of the season. Then forward Travis Outlaw broke his left foot, and forward Rudy Fernandez had to have a surgical procedure for a back injury that was causing him leg pain.

Fernandez is expected to return within the next two weeks, while guard Steve Blake, recently hospitalized for pneumonia, could return by Sunday when the Blazers host the Cleveland Cavaliers.

The Lakers were without Pau Gasol, who missed his third straight game with a sore left hamstring. Coach Phil Jackson has said he doesn't expect Gasol back until Sunday's home game against Milwaukee, at the earliest.

Portland led by as much as eight in the first half before the Lakers tied it at 31 early in the second quarter.

The Blazers went up 47-39 on Roy's driving layup with 4:09 left in the first half, and Juwan Howard's 15-foot jumper gave Portland a 55-43 lead at the break.

Bryant hit a step-back jumper to pull the Lakers to 68-65, and Los Angeles appeared to be gaining momentum, but the Blazers effectively snuffed it when Martell Webster plowed through three Lakers and scooped the ball in to make it 81-71 at the end of the third.

Howard made a 19-foot jumper midway through the fourth, and rookie Dante Cunningham added his own long jumper to put Portland up 92-74 as the game slipped all but out of reach.

It was the Lakers' third straight loss on the road. They fell to the Los Angeles Clippers 102-91 on Wednesday.

NOTES: The Blazers signed F Shavlik Randolph to a 10-day contract on Friday. ... Oregon State running back Jacquizz Rodgers was among those at the Rose Garden. ... It was Portland's 91st straight sellout. ... A fan lofted a sign reading ``Kobe Who?''

Copyright 2010 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





Head Coach Phil Jackson

ON GAME

“I think we were inordinately aggressive in the second and fourth quarter. They got on top very early and you can’t have a discrepancy like we had tonight in the foul shots…I think there are some calls that were bad. You’re always going to have calls that are bad but we just didn’t understand the relevance of what it is to the game. We had some bench players that aren’t used to playing in that situation at times and they don’t understand the gravity of it.”


ON PLAYING IN PORTLAND

“(sarcastically) I just mark ‘L’s on the season right away when we come up…they played very well tonight you have to give them credit for what they do, I don’t think we played exceptionally well, we just cant seem to match the energy. We don’t do a good job of it.”


ON LOSING TRENDS

“I haven’t been happy with our defense both nights (tonight and vs. Clippers). Both clubs aren’t 100-point ball clubs, more like 90-95 and we gave up too many points.”






Lakers Center Andrew Bynum

ON GAME

“I think defensively we got to be more solid. Everybody is missing assignments from top to bottom and it’s causing us to get frustrated I think…We got to do better defensively. I just think we’re not playing smart. Guys out there are definitely trying we’re just not playing smart.”


ON LOSING IN PORTLAND

“We got to go out and try and break the curse, it’s hard. It’s really hard for us to win here.”







COACH NATE McMILLAN

“I thought it was a great win for us in the sense that we played great basketball tonight. To beat the Lakers, we needed this type of effort from start to finish from both groups. Defensively, we played the way we’ve talked about. We need to play that way and be consistent with that – being physical, making them work. Offensively, we got the movement tonight. We attacked; I thought we pushed the ball. Both units played well. “


“You can go down the list of every guy that played and they did something special. From LaMarcus having to guard Bynum. I thought Martell played one of his best games as a pro tonight having to guard Kobe and keep him in front of him and stay focused on the offensive end of the floor. He rebounded the ball. Brandon accepted the challenge tonight and stepped up and played well… Howard again. Our young guys DC and Jeff came in and played with some energy. Then Bayless came in – 21 points off the bench. And my main man Miller played great basketball. It was good. We need to play that way and we got that game.


“The main thing is to try and deny him his catch. Towards the end, we had control of the game so they were giving it to him up the floor and he was putting his head down. Kobe took 37 attempts tonight. Just stay in front of him and make him shoot the ball. He can do that, but try and keep him off the free throw line.


“We were great attacking and getting to the free throw line tonight. That’s the game we want to play. When we play that game attacking the basket, rebounding the ball, and moving the ball, we’re normally in good shape.








BRANDON ROY

“Anytime you play the Lakers, everybody is excited about it. I keep saying sometimes your best defense against the best player in the world is to attack him so I just wanted to be aggressive the times he was on me and try to wear him out as much as I could on that end. I think Martell did a great job defensively. We got a huge win.”


On what the win says about the Blazers:

“It says we are going to keep fighting. We are going to keep scrapping. We played with a lot of effort tonight. Really, that’s the only way we’re going to beat the Lakers – if we come out and play with a lot of energy. I think we did that tonight so I’m proud of these guys. But again, it’s still the middle of the race so we’ve got a lot of work to continue to do and have to look forward to Cleveland on Sunday.”


“…It feels good, it gives us confidence. At the same time, we did a great job of playing a full 48 minute game. It does give us confidence going into Cleveland, but again, we’ve got to start from square one and play the same type of basketball.”






ANDRE MILLER

“That we pretty much kept them under control the whole game – that’s what I liked most. The times I’ve played against them, they’ve got a star over there that’s going to get it going eventually. I’ve been on some teams with guys who can defend and Martell Webster played really good defense.”


“We talked about staying aggressive on offense. Our defense has been a little bit up and down throughout the season but we showed signs we could play defense. Tonight we did that a little bit.”








MARTELL WEBSTER

On defensive effort:

“It wasn’t necessarily me going out there trying to show something, but I’ll tell you one thing – it’s easier to get motivated when you’re playing a team like that and a player like that. I kinda took it – I had my heart on my sleeve a little bit. I wanted to prove that I could get down, to myself, and guard him.”


On coach calling it (one of) his best game as a pro:

“Thank you coach, appreciate it. I heard him say it and I really appreciate that. If that’s the best one…it’s not going to be the only one. I just want to kind of ride that, use it as a stepping stool and motivation and carry over into this Cleveland game.”






Lakers vs. Blazers Game Preview

By MATT BEARDMORE

Posted Jan 08 2010 1:03AM

The Los Angeles Lakers haven't played in Portland in nearly nine months. The defending champions would likely try to avoid the Rose Garden altogether considering their recent struggles there.

Los Angeles will try to snap an eight-game slide in Portland on Friday night when the Trail Blazers look for an improved defensive effort.

The Western Conference-leading Lakers (28-7) make their first visit to the Rose Garden since a 106-98 loss on April 10.

"Even when we're having championship runs, we usually come up here and get our butts kicked,'' Kobe Bryant said after scoring 32 points in that defeat. "They play us tough here.''

The Trail Blazers' home winning streak against the Lakers is their longest current streak at home against one team. Los Angeles' skid in Portland is its longest active road losing streak versus one opponent.

"Outside of the fact that (the Trail Blazers are) a good basketball team, we've had some slippage in execution," Lakers guard Derek Fisher said following Thursday's practice. "If I recall correctly, we've gotten off to some poor starts (in Portland). We'll do ourselves a lot of good by getting off to a good start tomorrow night."

The Lakers, though, will be trying to do that without Pau Gasol, who will miss his third straight game with a left hamstring injury. Coach Phil Jackson said Thursday that he doesn't expect Gasol back until Sunday at the earliest.

Without Gasol in the lineup the last two games, the Lakers - among the league leaders with 104.0 points per game - are averaging 89.5. They shot 38.4 percent from the field in Wednesday's 102-91 loss to the Los Angeles Clippers.

"With that type of lineup, without Pau in there, we've got to find some other guys going, and they're not clicking right away," Jackson said.

While the Lakers will try to avoid their first three-game road losing streak since Feb. 27-March 9, the Trail Blazers (22-15) are looking to bounce back from a pair of poor defensive performances.

After holding teams to an average of 94.0 points during a 6-1 run from Dec. 20-Jan. 2, Portland is giving up 107.0 points on 51.6 percent shooting in its last two games - both losses.

The injury-ravaged Trail Blazers are without centers Greg Oden and Joel Przybilla for the rest of the season with knee injuries, but coach Nate McMillan expects an improved defensive effort from his team.

"That's a killer, 54 points in the paint, 27 second-chance points, I mean we just got pounded - really the last two nights - in the paint," McMillan told the team's official Web site following Tuesday's 109-105 loss to Memphis.

LaMarcus Aldridge returned against the Grizzlies after missing two games with an ankle injury, but Portland used only seven players.

"I don't buy that at all," Jackson said of the Trail Blazers being more vulnerable due to their slew of injuries. "They're going to have an defensive plan. They have two exceptional offensive players in (Andre) Miller and (Brandon) Roy. They can still find the offense to generate points."

Miller is averaging 20.3 points, 8.7 assists and 6.0 rebounds in his last three games.

Roy scored 25.5 points per game with 6.5 assists and 5.0 rebounds in two home wins over the Lakers last season.

Bryant, the league's second-leading scorer at 30.0 points per game, is averaging 34.1 in his last 12 games in Portland.

Bryant scored 31 in the Lakers' last victory at the Rose Garden - 86-83 on Feb. 23, 2005.

Copyright 2010 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
Kobe Bryant
(avulsion fracture, right index finger) will play.
Luke Walton
(pinched nerve, back) is out.
Pau Gasol
(strained left hamstring) is out.

Mavs

Steve Blake (pneumonia) is doubtful.
Nicolas Batum (right shoulder) is out.
Rudy Fernandez
(sciatic pain) is out.
Greg Oden
(left knee) is out.
Travis Outlaw
(left foot) is out.
Joel Przybilla
(right knee) is out









SEASON & SERIES NOTES; CONNECTIONS
The Lakers split last season’s series with Portland 2-2 for the second consecutive year, last winning a season series during the 2004-05 campaign. Overall, the Lakers have taken just two season series from the Trail Blazers in the 1990’s and 2000’s combined (2004-05: 2-1 and 1992-93: 3-2). This will be the 193rd meeting between the Trail Blazers and Lakers with Los Angeles leading the all-time series 108-84. The Lakers are 5-5 against the Trail Blazers in their last 10 overall games. At STAPLES Center, the Lakers are 15-4 against the Trail Blazers all-time and have won 14 of their last 16 including five straight. In Portland, the Lakers have dropped eight straight to the Trail Blazers and are 2-14 in their last 16 games at the Rose Garden. Under head coach Phil Jackson, the Lakers are 17-18 against the Trail Blazers during the regular season. In their first meeting last season, the Lakers held the Blazers to their lowest scoring total in series history in a 96-76 opening night victory 10/28/08. In 2006-07, Kobe Bryant scored 65 points March 16 at STAPLES Center, surpassing his own series record of 50 points established at home back on April 14, 2006 (on the same day Bryant surpassed Elgin Baylor’s single-season franchise scoring record of 2,719 points). In 46 career games against Portland including 40 starts, Kobe Bryant is averaging 27.7 points against the Trail Blazers. In his last 15 regular season games against the Blazers, Bryant is averaging 34.3 points (515). Portland guard Rudy Fernandez played for Spain internationally along with Pau Gasol. Fernandez was on the 2008 Olympic silver medal team with Gasol while both also played together on the gold medal winning Spanish 2006 FIBA World Championships team.

BRYANT EARNS WESTERN CONFERENCE PLAYER OF THE MONTH

On January 6th, Kobe Bryant was named Western Conference Player of the Month for December 2009. The award is Bryant’s 12th Western Conf. Player of the Month honor and 13th Player of the Month award overall. Bryant was also named NBA Player of the Month for December of 2000, a year before the award was divided into Eastern and Western Conferences for the 2001-02 season. The award is the first of the season for Bryant, who has won multiple Player of the Month awards in a single season four times (2005-06, 2006-07, 2007-08, 2008-09). Bryant’s previous Western Conference Player of the Month awards came in January 2009, December 2008, April 2008, February 2008, March of 2007, December 2006, April 2006, January 2006, March 2004, January 2003 and November 2001.

Bryant led the NBA in scoring for December (31.3 points) while helping the Lakers to a Western Conference-best 12-3 record. Finishing in the Western Conference top 10 in assists (5.0), FT% (.857), steals (1.90) and minutes (40.1), Bryant also connected on buzzer beaters to defeat both Miami and Milwaukee. Recording two double- doubles, including a season-high 44-point, 11-assist effort 12/29 vs. Golden State, he also won back-to-back Conference Player of the Week awards (12/21, 12/28).

WITH OR WITHOUT PAU
After missing the Lakers first 11 games of 2009-10 with a strained right hamstring, Pau Gasol made his season debut 11/19 vs. Chicago, playing 22 games before missing the Lakers last two games 1/5 vs. Houston and 1/6 @ LA Clippers with a strained left hamstring. In 22 games with Pau in the lineup this season, the Lakers are 19-3 while defeating teams by an average of 9.9 points per game (218). Additionally, in games which Gasol has played, all five starters have scored in double-figures five times and five or more Lakers have posted double-figures 13 times. In the 13 games this season without him in the lineup, not once has either occured. In games played without Gasol since he joined the Lakers, Los Angeles is 16-8 overall (6-4 in 2007-08, 1-0 in 2008-09 and 9-4 in 2009-10). With Gasol in the lineup, the Lakers are 105-25 (.808) in the regular season since he joined the team in February of 2008 (22-5 in 2007-08, 64-17 in 2008-09 and 19-3 in 2009-10) and 30-14 (.682) in the playoffs.

3-TIME ALL STAR GAME MVP KOBE BRYANT LEADS ALL PLAYERS AFTER 4th ROUND OF ALL-STAR BALLOTING
On January 7th, the NBA announced its FOURTH returns of 2010 NBA All-Star balloting with Kobe Bryant (1,793,782) leading ALL players in All-Star voting, ahead of Cleveland’s LeBron James (1,769,287) and Miami’s Dwyane Wade (1,719,359). In the West, Denver’s Carmelo Anthony (1,568,259) and Dallas’ Dirk Nowitzki (826,130) are the top two vote-getters at forward, Bryant and Houston’s Tracy McGrady (746,625) lead the guard voting and the Suns’ Amar’e Stoudemire (1,304,470) leads the center voting. In the East, James and Boston’s Kevin Garnett (1,467,365) lead the forward voting, Wade and Philadelphia’s Allen Iverson (930,713) are the top two vote- getters at guard and Dwight Howard (1,681,897) leads all Eastern Conference centers in balloting.

Pau Gasol (754,070), who made his second All-Star team last season as a reserve and became the 27th Laker in franchise history to be name an All-Star, ranks 4th in balloting among West forwards behind Anthony, Nowitzki and San Antonio’s Tim Duncan (776,225) but ahead of Oklahoma City’s Kevin Durant (556,847) while Andrew Bynum (743,182) ranks 2nd among West centers behind Stoudemire. This marks the final balloting update leading up to the announcement of the All-Star starters on Thursday, January 21st prior to the TNT doubleheader.

In each of the last two seasons, Bryant has led the Western Conference in all-star balloting. Last season, he accumulated 2,805,397 votes, finishing third in overall balloting behind Dwight Howard (3,150,181) and LeBron James (2,940,823). In 2007-08, Bryant garnered 2,004,940 votes to finish fourth in overall voting behind Kevin Garnett (2,399,148), James (2,108,831) and Howard (2,066,991). In 2006-07, when he earned his second All-Star MVP, Bryant finished third overall in balloting behind James and Yao Ming. A three-time All-Star MVP (2002 Philadelphia, 2007 Las Vegas, 2009 Phoenix), Bryant is an 11-time All-Star and has started 11 consecutive All-Star games. Bryant, who was the youngest All-Star in NBA history in 1998, led all players in NBA All-Star balloting in 2003.

WIRE-TO-WIRE
With their 88-79 victory over Houston January 5th, the Lakers posted their 4th wire-to-wire victory of the season. The Lakers recorded their first wire-to-wire victory of the year with a 104-88 win 11/8 vs. NO, their second with a 130-97 win 11/28 @ GS and their third with a 108-88 win 12/6 vs. PHX. Last season, the Lakers claimed nine wire- to-wire victories (games in which they never trailed) during the regular season, tied for 3rd most in the league (Phoenix) behind Cleveland (14) and Orlando (13). The Lakers also won in wire-to-wire fashion twice during the 2009 Playoffs (4/29 vs. Utah & 5/17 vs. Houston). Additionally, the Lakers were one of only two teams last season (Cleveland) to never lose in wire-to-wire fashion during the regular season. In the playoffs, however, the Lakers played two games in which they never led, falling twice to Houston in the Conference Semifinals (5/10/09 at HOU and 5/14/09 at HOU). In the regular season, the Lakers have not lost in wire-to-wire fashion since 1/17/08 vs. PHX.

BRYANT PASSES PATRICK EWING FOR 15th ON NBA’S ALL-TIME SCORING LIST
With 22 points 1/5 vs. Houston, Kobe Bryant moved past Patrick Ewing (24,815) for 15th on the NBA’s all-time scoring list. Earlier this season, with 41 points 11/6 vs. Memphis, Bryant moved past Allen Iverson for 16th on the all-time list. Bryant has been steadily moving up the list the last few years and last season alone, passed Charles Barkley (23,757) for 17th, Robert Parish (23,334) for 18th, Adrian Dantley (23,177) for 19th, Elgin Baylor (23,149) for 20th, Clyde Drexler (22,195) for 21st, Gary Payton (21,813) for 22nd and Larry Bird (21,791) for 23rd. Next on the all-time list ahead of Bryant (24,870) are Jerry West (14th/25,192) and Reggie Miller (13th/25,279).

Additionally, with his free throw at the 6:07 mark of the third quarter November 19th vs. Chicago, Bryant moved past Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (24,176) for 2nd on the Lakers all-time franchise scoring list. While only Jerry West (25,192) has scored more points with the Lakers than Bryant (24,870), at his current scoring average (30.0 ppg), Bryant would surpass West approximately 11 games from now 1/27/10 at Indiana.