Lakers Gameday | 02/23/10 | Grizzlies

Box Score
Play by Play

8 Turnovers in the third quarter alone for LA, helping Memphis post a 33-23 quarter to turn a 5-point halftime deficit into a 5-point lead leading into the fourth quarter.

13 Rebounds for Pau Gasol to pace the Lakers, while Ron Artest and Kobe Bryant added seven each. Gasol also contributed five assists, two blocks, two steals and 22 points.

32 Points for Kobe Bryant on an outstanding performance from the field (13-of-19). He nailed 3-of-4 three-pointers, including two in the final minute.

52 Points in the paint for LA, much improved from its 26 paint points in the team's Feb. 1 in this building. Andrew Bynum had 15 points in only 23 minutes (foul trouble), while Gasol added 22 in 41 minutes.

1,000 Career games for the Lakers played in by Bryant, and what a way to do it.

Mike Trudell, Lakers.com

Lakers - Grizzlies Running Diary
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  • GAME RECAP
  • QUOTES
  • GAME PREVIEW
  • INJURY REPORT
  • GAME NOTES

Kobe returns and sinks Grizzlies, 99-98

Posted Feb 23 2010 11:03PM

MEMPHIS, Tenn.(AP) Kobe Bryant returned to lineup after missing five games with an ankle injury and hit a 3-pointer with 4.3 seconds left to lift the Los Angeles Lakers to 99-98 victory over the Memphis Grizzlies Tuesday night.

Bryant led the Lakers with 32 points, including his team's final nine points. His 3-pointer with 54 seconds left tied the game.

Pau Gasol added 22 points and 13 rebounds for the Lakers, who won for the seventh time in their last eight road games.

The Grizzlies, who lost their fifth straight home game, were led by O.J. Mayo's 25 points. Zach Randolph scored 20 and grabbed 14 rebounds, his seventh straight double-double.

Mayo's two missed free throws with 18.8 seconds allowed the Lakers an opportunity to complete a comeback from nine points down early in the fourth quarter. Had Mayo made his free throws, the Grizzlies would have led by four.

Absent from the Lakers lineup for his longest stretch in five years, Bryant scored nine points in the opening quarter, including a four-point play, and triggered a late first-quarter run with two breakaway dunks to increase the Lakers lead to 11.

Bryant last played Feb. 5 and Los Angeles went 4-1 without him.

The Grizzlies took their first lead early in the third quarter on a 3-pointer by Mayo for a 59-56 advantage and didn't trail again until Bryant's game-winning shot.

Bryant, averaging 42.5 points against Memphis in two previous games this season, began his late nine-point run with a jumper from the left wing with 2:23 to go to trim the Memphis lead to 95-92.

With Bryant scoring 17 of his points in the first half, the Lakers built several 14-point leads before settling for a 53-48 halftime advantage.

NOTES: Grizzlies forward Zach Randolph broke Pau Gasol's single-season franchise record for offensive rebounds (238). Playing in his 56th game of the season, Randolph grabbed four offensive rebounds to increase his total to 242. Gasol played for Memphis from 2001 and 2008.

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 HEAD COACH PHIL JACKSON

On Kobe Bryant:
“He made some passes that were unusual. I think it caught guys by surprise. Otherwise, I thought he played great.”

On the defense:
 “We had nine turnovers in the third quarter. You can’t defend turnovers. They are eventually going to catch up with you.”

On getting involved early:
“We couldn’t keep Pau Gasol or Andrew Bynum on the floor tonight even though he (Pau Gasol) was the best scorer out there on the post. We really wanted to attack him inside and try to get an inside out game.”








LAKERS FORWARD PAU GASOL (22 points, 13 rebounds)

On the win:
 “I think he really stepped up at the end of the game. The first game back and he really played excellent. It feels good to have him back, and I enjoy what he does.”

On the offense:
“A lot better tonight. I think our balance was good. I think we executed really well, especially in the first quarter. We really got our way. Overall, I think the execution was really good. We just turned the ball over way too much. We gave them too many good opportunities. They are a very good transition team. We made it easy for them for awhile.”

On the last game:
“All I wanted to do is to contribute to my team and help them win. That’s what I usually try to do, especially here. It was really bad when we lost last time. It was a tough loss so I am glad we got a nice win tonight. We just have to move on and get ready for tomorrow.”










LAKERS GUARD KOBE BRYANT (32 points,  7 rebounds, 6 assists)

On winning:
“It’s fun. That’s my responsibility to make plays down the stretch. If it’s not taking the shot, then its making the play for someone else. I enjoy it. ”

On consistently making big shots:
“Every time, it just feels like the first time. It truly does. It’s a great feeling. It’s always brand new.”

On offensive execution:
“It’s the best team we have at running that play. We have so many playmakers. Guys are patient off the back so you have to honor that and you have to honor the deep side. A lot goes in it. You have to switch it. You might have a situation like we had in Sacramento. It’s a tough sequence to defend.”

On frustrating O.J. Mayo:
“He played very well tonight. He shot the ball well. He made great decisions. I try to make it tough for him, but he is a phenomenal talent and he is just getting started.”

On Mayo’s missed free throws:
“We have all been there before. I have missed big shots. I have missed big free throws. It happens.”

On playing Dallas tomorrow:
“It is going to be interesting to see how they have evolved and how they play.

 

 






GRIZZLIES HEAD COACH LIONEL HOLLINS

On the technical foul:
“The technical was not the play that won or lost the game. I was upset at Marc (Gasol) for setting an illegal screen. I hit the table, and he called a technical. Kobe (Bryant) hitting a couple of big shots was the game coming down the stretch. That was the game. He (Kobe) kept making plays at the end of the game that kept them (Los Angeles) close. There are a lot of things that were going down coming down the stretch and they’re called breaks. Sometimes the breaks go your way; sometimes they go against you. Tonight, coming down the stretch, it was all set up for Kobe to do his thing and he was able to finish.”

On the final play:
“That’s all we were trying to do was get a look. We set a back screen on Rudy (Gay). I was hoping that Kobe (Bryant) would open up a little bit and he did, but Pau (Gasol) stepped out and took away a real clear shot. We got a shot and it just didn’t go in.”

On the difference between the two meetings with the Lakers:
“Kobe (Bryant) didn’t have to pass it (this time). Tonight, they set a back screen, the same play we ran. Rudy (Gay) helped on (Ron) Artest but couldn’t get over Pau’s (Gasol) screen on a hand-back, so Kobe hit the three.”

On execution:
“We executed (down the stretch). It’s just basketball. Sometimes you get breaks. We blocked Kobe’s shot at the end and the ball hits the support of the backboard and they get the ball. If it just goes up and we can get it they have to foul us again. We didn’t make two free throws when we were up two. It’s just basketball.”

On team effort:
“No question (I’m pleased with the effort). We battled. A great player made a great play. That’s what great players do. You have to give him (Kobe) his due. It hurts. We played well enough to get the win, but obviously when you have a Kobe Bryant who can make plays like he can at the end, playing well doesn’t always matter. We gave ourselves and opportunity to be in the game and win the game, but Kobe was better. That’s the bottom line. We have to muster up the energy to go ahead and play Washington tomorrow night.”








GRIZZLIES FORWARD RUDY GAY (17 points, 6 rebounds)

On the last possession:
“There is not much you can do. He was a few feet from the three-point line and knocked down a big shot which he has done before and probably not for the last time. He’s a great player. We played great defense.”

On the team’s performance:
“During these big games we step up. We have to learn what we do during this kind of games and do it every night.”






GRIZZLIES CENTER MARC GASOL (8 points, 11 rebounds)

On how to improve:
“We are just going to keep playing, keep shooting the ball, and keep talking to each other. If we play together everything will be alright.”

On the team’s performance:
“We played one of the best teams in the league tonight and for a bit of time we were ahead. We played some pretty good basketball. I think we did well.”

On the plan for the last possession:
“Talking and helping. He hit a big shot. It wasn’t a free throw. It was a fadeaway three-pointer and he made it. He’s one of the best.”

On guarding Kobe Bryant:
“You always try to hope he misses and play good defense, so if he gets a shot it is a tough shot. It was a tough shot and he made it. There is nothing you can do. It was a fadeaway three-pointer. Not many guys can make that.”

On the team:
“We already know we are playing a lot better. We already know we can play the best teams in the NBA and do a great job. Nobody comes here thinking we are the team from last year. They come here knowing that we are a different team and more aggressive. We play hard and don’t give up.”






GRIZZLIES GUARD MIKE CONLEY (7 points, 2 rebounds)

On what they can learn:
“We can learn from every loss and every game. It was a game where we had to make a lot of plays down the stretch and they had to make a lot of plays down the stretch. Hopefully we get better from it and take it into tomorrow’s game and the rest of the season.”

On going into the next game after a loss:
“It does make it tough but you’ve got to have a short memory. The great thing about the league is you get to play another day. We have to focus on tomorrow’s game and try to get the win.”

On the next opponent (Washington Wizards):
“They are a team that has been playing better. They aren’t the team we played earlier in the season. They got a lot of guys in the trades so we’ve got to be ready to go.”

 



Lakers vs. Grizzlies Game Preview

By MATT BEARDMORE

Posted Feb 22 2010 1:15PM

Kobe Bryant couldn't take the last-second shot in the defending champions' last game, but he might have the ball in his hands if there's a similar situation Tuesday.

With Bryant possibly set to return after missing the last five games with a sprained left ankle, the well-rested Los Angeles Lakers visit the Memphis Grizzlies.

Bryant, who hasn't played since Feb. 5, was receiving treatment in the Lakers' training room Thursday when Derek Fisher missed a 21-footer as time expired in an 87-86 loss to visiting Boston.

"We couldn't find a way to score in the last few minutes," said coach Phil Jackson, whose team made one field goal in the final 7:14. "I think we had some pretty good shots. We just couldn't convert."

Pau Gasol, who had 22 points, refused to use Bryant's absence as an excuse.

"No matter who's out, no matter what the circumstances are in the game, we still have to want to win the game, no matter who we're playing against," Gasol said. "We had a chance."

The Lakers have not played the last four days and the time off could be enough to get Bryant back in the lineup for the Western Conference-leading Lakers (42-14), who are 4-1 without the 12-time All-Star.

Bryant, 34 points shy of passing Reggie Miller (25,279) for 13th all-time in scoring, is averaging 38.0 in his last five games in Memphis. After scoring 41 in a 114-98 home win over the Grizzlies on Nov. 6, Bryant matched a season high with 44 and passed Jerry West as the Lakers' all-time leading scorer in a 95-93 loss at FedEx Forum on Feb. 1. Swarmed by Grizzlies defenders in the final seconds, Bryant passed to Ron Artest, who missed a 3-pointer as the Lakers had their four-game winning streak in Memphis snapped.

The Grizzlies (28-27), who also broke a five-game losing streak to Los Angeles in that matchup, have dropped four straight at home since that contest.

Memphis, tied with Houston for 10th in the West, rebounded from Friday's 100-87 double-overtime loss to visiting Miami with a 104-94 victory at New Jersey on Sunday.

The Grizzlies trailed by 18 points in the first half but rallied for just their third win in 11 games.

"We just had to relax a little bit and come out and play," said O.J. Mayo, who scored 10 of his 24 during a 17-0 second-half run.

If Memphis is going to avoid its first five-game slide at home since a six-game stretch from Feb. 20-March 21 of last season, it will likely have to improve on offense. Since averaging 107.1 points during their franchise-record 11-game home winning streak from Dec. 18-Jan. 25, the Grizzlies are scoring 92.7 per game while dropping five of six at FedEx Forum.

The Lakers have won six of seven on the road, holding opponents to an average of 90.1 points.

Gasol, averaging 18.4 points, 12.4 rebounds and 3.2 blocks during Bryant's absence, will play his fourth game in Memphis since getting traded to Los Angeles late in the 2007-08 season. Gasol had 10 points and nine rebounds in the Feb. 1 loss, while his younger brother, Marc, scored 11 with 13 boards for the Grizzlies.

Zach Randolph, who will try to post his seventh straight double-double, is averaging 21.5 points and 16.0 rebounds against the Lakers this season.

Rudy Gay led the Grizzlies in scoring with 22 and 25 points, respectively, in the previous two matchups with Los Angeles. He is averaging 23.7 in the Lakers' last three visits to Memphis.

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
(strained tendon, left ankle / avulsion fracture, right index finger) is probable.
Andrew Bynum
(bruised right hip) is probable.
Sasha Vujacic
(sprained right shoulder) is out.
Luke Walton
(pinched nerve, back) is out indefinitely.

Grizzlies

Ronnie Brewer (partially torn right hamstring) is out.












SEASON & SERIES NOTES; CONNECTIONS
The Lakers and Grizzlies have split the first two games of their season series 1-1 with one game remaining. The Lakers, who have dropped just two season series to the Grizzlies all- time (2004-05, 0-3 & 2005-06, 1-3), swept last season’s series with Memphis 4-0. This will be the 56th meeting between the two franchises and the 33rd since the Grizzlies moved to Memphis. The Lakers lead the all-time series 41-14 but are just 19-13 versus the Grizzlies since the team moved to Memphis. In their last 10 meetings with Memphis, the Lakers are 7-3 and have won 5 of their last 6 overall against the Grizzlies. In Memphis, the Lakers have gone 5-5 in their last 10 road games but have won four of their last five at FedExForum. The Lakers are 5-5 in their last 10 home games against Memphis and are 15-5 all-time at STAPLES Center against the Grizzlies. Under head coach Phil Jackson, the Lakers are 27- 10 against the Grizzlies. In their last meeting of the 2008-09 season 4/12/09 at STAPLES Center, the Lakers held Memphis to a Grizzlies series-low 75 points, surpassing the old record of 79 points set back on 2/14/05 @ Memphis. Individually, Kobe Bryant is averaging 24.6 points for his career against the Grizzlies in 49 games (42 starts). In 2007-08, Bryant scored an NBA season-high 53 points March 28, 2008 at STAPLES Center. Three seasons ago in Memphis, Bryant scored a series-high 60 points, becoming only the 3rd player in NBA history to score 50 or more points in three consecutive games 3/22/07. Additionally, the Lakers acquired Pau Gasol from Memphis in exchange for Kwame Brown, Javaris Crittenton, Aaron McKie and the draft rights to his brother, Marc Gasol, on February 1, 2008. On December 22, 2008, the brothers Gasol faced off in the NBA for the first time, with Pau (15 points, 7 rebounds, 6 assists, 2 blocks) bettering his brother Marc’s line (8 points,7 rebounds). In five games against his former team, Pau is averaging 14.8 points (74), 9.0 rebounds (45), 3.8 assists (19), 1.00 steals (5) and 1.00 blocks (5). Both brothers played for Spain in the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Pau remains the franchise leader in a number of statistical categories, including points (8,966), rebounds (4,096) and blocks (877), in six-plus years with Memphis.

FISHER 3 POINTS SHY OF 9,000 FOR HIS CAREER

Entering Tuesday’s game at Memphis, Derek Fisher (8,997) sits just three points shy of the 9,000-point career milestone. With the Lakers, Fisher has scored 6,205 career points, moving past Wilt Chamberlain (5,985) and Happy Hairston (5,993) this season and into 17th place on the franchise’s all-time scoring list. Next on the Lakers all-time scoring list are Elden Campbell (16th/6,408) and Vlade Divac (15th/6,531).

MINUS 24
On February 6th at Portland, Kobe Bryant missed his 1st game since 3/7/07, snapping a streak of 235 consecutive games played. Bryant’s streak ranked 5th among active players prior to his absence. So far this season, Bryant has missed five games, bringing his career total to 91 missed games in this his 14th NBA season. In games that Bryant has not played but been on the team’s roster, the Lakers are 57-34 overall. However, since 2003-04, in 45 games without Bryant, the Lakers are just 21-24.

FISHER PLAYS IN 1,000th CAREER GAME; BRYANT ONE GAME SHY OF 1,000 FOR HIS CAREER
In the Lakers 96-81 victory over the Utah Jazz on February 10, Derek Fisher played in his 1,000th career regular season game. Of his first 1,000 career games, 816 came in a Lakers uniform. Fisher currently ranks 9th (818 games) in franchise history for games played behind Byron Scott (8th/846). Having missed the last five games due to a sprained left ankle, the next game Kobe Bryant plays in will be the 1,000th regular season contest of his career. Bryant, who entered the season ranked 2nd on the Lakers all-time games played list, will be just the second Laker in franchise history to reach the 1,000 game milestone, joining Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (1,093) in that exclusive club. In terms of playoff games, Bryant (175 games) currently ranks 3rd in franchise history behind Abdul Jabbar (180) and Earvin “Magic” Johnson (190) while Fisher (160) ranks 5th in franchise history behind Michael Cooper (168).

GASOL’S HISTORIC LINE
In the Lakers 101-89 victory over the Spurs on February 8, Pau Gasol recorded game-highs in points (21), rebounds (19), assists (8) and blocks (5). Since the NBA began tracking blocked shots prior to the 1973-74 season, only six other times in NBA history has a player recorded 21+ points, 19+ rebounds, 8+ assists and 5+ blocks in a single game. Gasol, who accomplished that feat for the 7th time in league history, became 6th player ever to do so and the first since Shaquille O’Neal in January of 2000.

BRYANT MOVES PAST JERRY WEST FOR FIRST ON LAKERS ALL-TIME SCORING LIST (14th ON NBA LIST); REGGIE MILLER 33 POINTS AWAY
With a slam dunk at the 4:14 mark of the third quarter February 1 at Memphis, Kobe Bryant moved past Jerry West (25,192) for first on the Lakers all-time scoring list and 14th on the NBA’s all-time scoring list, finishing the game with 44 points (West’s retired number). Bryant (25,246) is now 33 points shy of Reggie Miller (25,279) for 13th on the NBA’s all-time scoring list. Next on the all-time list are Alex English (12th/25,613), John Havlicek (11th/26,395) and Dominique Wilkins (10th/26,668).

Less than a month earlier, with 22 points 1/5 vs. Houston, Bryant moved past Patrick Ewing (24,815) for 15th on the NBA’s all-time scoring list. In November, with his free throw at the 6:07 mark of the third quarter 11/19 vs. Chicago, Bryant moved past Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (24,176) for 2nd on the Lakers all-time franchise scoring list while 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.

BACK-TO-BACK
Tuesday’s game at Memphis is the first of a back-to-back set against the Grizzlies and Mavericks. This season, the Lakers are 9-5 in the first game and 10-4 in the second game of back-to-backs. On the year, the Lakers will play 20 sets of back-to-back games, the most the team has played in a single season since playing 22 sets of back-to- backs during the 1999-00 campaign. Last year, the Lakers played 19 sets of back-to-backs, going 14-5 in the first game and 14-5 in the second as well. Charlotte, Detroit and Milwaukee lead the league with 23 back-to-backs each in 2009-10 while New Orleans (15) and San Antonio (17) will play the fewest sets this season.