GAMEDAY LINKS: Team Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Final
Box Score Los Angeles Lakers 22 25 35 11 103
Play by Play Washington Wizards 24 22 24 19 89

Bryant' 3-pointers lead Lakers over Wizards 103-89

WASHINGTON (AP) Kobe Bryant took over the game by scoring 16 of his 24 points in the third quarter, and Andrew Bynum added seven points in his season debut Tuesday night as the Los Angeles Lakers beat the undermanned Washington Wizards 103-89.

Bryant scored 12 straight Lakers points during a 17-2 third-quarter run that put the game away. The Lakers won for the fifth time in six games, including three of the first four on their seven-game East Coast road trip.

Bryant's hot streak came shortly after a dubious NBA hat trick. Fouled while attempting a 3-pointer, he missed all three free throws to the boos and laughter of the Verizon Center crowd.

A few minutes later, Bryant had quieted the Wizards fans and had the large contingent of Lakers fans cheering. His fadeaway 3-pointer from the left baseline rolled around the rim and fell in. Then came a 3-pointer from the right baseline. Then he was fouled attempting another 3, and this time he made all three free throws. Then came another 3 that made the score 80-64.

Bryant played only 24 minutes - scoring exactly a point per minute on the floor - and finished 7 for 13 from the field, including 4 for 6 from 3-point range.

Bynum, who had offseason surgery to repair a partially torn ligament in his right knee, came off the bench and played 17 minutes, shooting 1 for 5 from the field and 5 for 8 from the free throw line.

Pau Gasol added 16 points, nine rebounds and seven assists for the Lakers. Lamar Odom had 18 points and 10 rebounds, and Shannon Brown scored 16 points.

The Lakers have been winning, but not by comfortable means. The two-time defending champs faced fourth-quarter deficits in seven of their previous nine games - including a 115-108 win over the Wizards in Los Angeles last week - but this time Washington didn't have the firepower to come even close.

No. 1 overall pick John Wall missed yet another game, this time with tendinitis in his right knee. He's sat out eight of 23 this season, mostly with left foot and left knee injuries. Forward Andray Blatche was also inactive with soreness in his left knee, and forward Yi Jianlian sprained his right knee in the first quarter and did not return.

Nick Young, who always seems to play well against teams from his native southern California, scored 21 points off the bench to lead the Wizards, who have lost five straight and nine of 10. Starting guards Gilbert Arenas and Kirk Hinrich combined to shoot 8 for 25 from the field.

Notes: Washington coach Flip Saunders explained Wall's latest ailment: "He had some tendinitis in his knees in the summertime. When you're inactive and you don't play, and you don't play for two or three days, and then you go out and play a game, tendinitis will flare up. We've got to keep him on a stricter program as far as conditioning when he's not playing to make sure we can strengthen that." ... The Wizards, who have struggled all season at the gate, couldn't even sell out the Lakers. Attendance was more than 3,000 short of a sellout. ... Lakers G Sasha Vujacic, the subject of a possible impending trade, suited up but did not play.

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

84.6 Combined shooting percentage for Lamar Odom (5-of-5) and Pau Gasol (6-of-8) in the first three quarters, as the two bigs showed fresh legs and minds with the return of Andrew Bynum.

40 Free throws attempted by the Lakers. Despite missing 11 of those attempts, L.A. still made 17 more FT’s than the Wizards (12-of-16).

23 L.A.’s biggest lead in a contest that wasn’t close throughout, the road team holding a double-digit lead almost throughout. The Wiz, playing without their two best players in injured John Wall and Andray Blatche, led by at most two early in the first quarter.

17 Minutes played by Bynum in his first contest after 25 missed games. He scored seven
points, five coming at the free throw line, while making only 1-of-5 field goal attempts, plus four rebounds and two blocks. His return was certainly a successful one for the Lakers.

12 Points scored in a two-minute period between the 3:56 and 2:01 marks of the third quarter, thanks to 3-of-3 shooting from three and 3-of-3 free throws drawn on a three-point attempt. He finished the game with 24 points in just 24 minutes, getting ample rest for the back-to-back at Indiana on Wednesday.

View More Photos

Points Bryant 24, 7-13 FG
Rebounds Odom 10, 2 OFF 8 DEF
Assists Gasol 7
Steals Blake 2
Blocks Bynum 2



On Bynum's return to the lineup:

"I thought his first few minutes were good and then he tired after that…noticeable difference. He gave us something that we needed at the time. We had both Lamar and Pau with two fouls."

On continuing to work him back into the lineup next game:
"I'll try to work him out somewhat similar to what we did tonight, short minutes, relief minutes and see how he goes in the game. I was ready to put him back in if we needed to tonight but that was a game in which we didn't have to push it down the end."

On the Gasol and Odom combination:

"I thought Lamar was effective. I thought they both played very well tonight. I thought the passing was good, the interior game."


On coming back after injury:

"It was great getting to play again. It was a big moment for me because I've been wanting to get back. Now that I am back I just want to help my teammates out and get back in the rotation. For a while I'm going to be coming off the bench until I get back in the swing of things. I'm happy to be back."


On the game:

"It got going for me in the third quarter. I had a good matchup in the second half overall and we were moving the ball around really well. It was good seeing Bynum back, he makes a big difference for us. We were concentrating tonight and making good decisions. We have a lot of great defenders and we executed really well."


On playing with a new starting lineup:

"Every time you lose someone, roles change. When you continue to lose people, you're looking at a guy like [Trevor] Booker who's an energy guy for you, but now he has to become a main guy. You're asking for somebody that is really not ready to do that, but I thought overall as a team we competed."

On playing shorthanded and losing Yi Jianlian in the first quarter:
"You can't worry about things that you have no control over. At no point did I think our guys didn't play hard and compete tonight. I think that's something that we've got to build on. I told the team afterwards, they played how you want to play as a team. They share the ball tremendously; they are very unselfish in how they play; they have a killer instinct; and they do the dirty work inside."

On Kobe Bryant's performance:
"After [Bryant] missed those three free throws, I called Nick Young and Gilbert Arenas over and I said I just want you guys to be ready, because Kobe is the type of player who the more the challenge, the better he rises to the occasion. I know he's going to get aggressive and he got going and just got on a roll. That's what he does, and that's why he's going to go down as one of the greatest who has played the game."


On what he tries to do to help his team:

"You got to bring it every night; we're trying to build something. I'm just trying to bring it, energy, energy-wise, scoring-wise, anything I can do for my teammates and my team."

On seeing so many of his teammates injured:

"It's tough, that part of the NBA, people have injuries but you hate to be one of those teams that keep having players getting injured."

On his hot shooting start:
"I kind of got it going (early). They kind of keyed in on me in the second half, and they made the defense more tough."

On covering Kobe Bryant:
"It's tough, because you don't know whether to play up, because he will try to blow by you or pump fake. When he has got it going he will pump fake, I am jumping that because he has just hit two in a row. He's a tough player to guard. You got to keep battling though, you aren't to go to stop Kobe Bryant and keep him at zero, because he will find a way. He has been in the league and has seen all kinds of defenses."


On how he felt the big men did being shorthanded:

"I think we did a pretty good job tonight, the bigs did. That's a game we'll look to improve on."

On how they defended him:
"They tried to not let me get easy baskets. I still got a couple, but they did a pretty good job of keeping me away from the basket."

On his attitude coming out and starting in the second half:
"I just wanted to bring a lot of energy and play great defense, and take what comes to me on the offensive end."

On guarding the big men of the Lakers:
"It's tough especially when Bynum came into the game and they had Bynum and Gasol in there; two big bodies and I had to guard one. I just tried to keep a body on him at all times."


On Kobe Bryant's performance:

"That's what he does. He came down and hit pull up threes, face up threes with hands in his face and there's pretty much nothing you can do about that."


On the team's injuries:

"It's tough, we've been hit by this injury bug for the last couple of years, but we'll keep fighting and keep pulling for each other…I see something new every year. All they can do is get healthy and join the rest of the team."

On the third quarter:

"Teams like that, they try to beat you up at the beginning of the game, and if they can't do that they try to knock you out at the beginning of the third. That's what good teams do and we knew that coming out... the third quarter killed us."



Los Angeles spent its day off in Washington with President Obama, who congratulated the Lakers on winning last season’s title.

Kobe Bryant and his teammates know they have a lot of work to do to win another championship and schedule another day with the President.

Coming off a sluggish performance over one of the league’s worst teams, the Lakers look for a crisper effort Tuesday night against the Wizards, another bottom feeder they had some trouble against last week.

Los Angeles (17-7) has won four of five following a four-game losing streak, but its last three victories weren’t particularly inspiring.

This stretch started with last Tuesday’s 115-108 win over Washington. The Lakers led by just four points with 1:20 left before pulling away to win their eighth straight in the series. Bryant scored nine of his 32 points in the final 5:23 of the game, while Lamar Odom added 24 points.

A night after its close call against the Wizards, Los Angeles defeated the lowly Clippers 87-86 on Derek Fisher’s layup at the buzzer.

The Lakers then traveled to Chicago on Friday, finishing with a season low in points in an 88-84 loss, and then to New Jersey, where it hung on to win 99-92 on Sunday after falling behind by a point with 5:36 to play.

“We have to muster up the energy and muster up the motivation to play every night,” said Bryant, who scored 14 of his 32 points in the fourth quarter against the Nets. “I’m (annoyed) about it. We’re not doing a good job of doing it.”

The two-time defending champs have now faced fourth-quarter deficits in seven of their last nine games after trailing in the final period in just four of their first 15.

“We can’t be great every single night,” said Odom, who finished with 22 points and seven rebounds Sunday. “But it’s just the way we’ve been going for us for the last 10 to 15 games. We get a lead, give it away and have to fight back. We’re not playing to our potential. Not taking anything away from the Nets, but we’re just not playing well right now. It’s a little disappointing.”

The Wizards’ play has also been disappointing, but unlike the Lakers, they haven’t been finding ways to win.

Washington (6-16), which fell to New York 101-95 on Friday, has lost four straight and eight of nine.

Coach Flip Saunders believes his team must pick up its intensity to have any chance of competing.

“We came back in L.A. because we played hard,” Saunders said after Monday’s practice. “We’re at a point right now because our talent level is not up to the team’s we’re playing at is that we’re just going to have to play harder than people.”

Saunders also said John Wall’s status for this game is questionable with knee soreness.

Wall, who sat out Wednesday’s 116-91 loss to Sacramento with a sore foot, struggled to find his shot against the Knicks, finishing with eight points on 4 of 14 shooting. He has missed seven of Washington’s first 22 games with foot and knee injuries, but had 22 points and a career-best 14 assists against the Lakers last week.

Nick Young also played well at Staples Center, finishing with a season-best 30 points on 10 of 18 shooting, and could be poised for another big game. In six career games against the Lakers, the former USC guard is averaging 18.3 points, his most against any opponent and 8.9 points better than his career average.


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 Andrew Bynum (right knee surgery) is questionable.
Theo Ratliff
(sore left knee) is out.

Mavs Josh Howard (torn ACL) is out.
Andray Blatche (left knee soreness) is out.
John Wall (right knee tendinitis) is out.

12/07 - WAS @ LAL W 115-108
12/14 - LAL @ WAS

One of the advantages of playing a team twice in the span of a week is that there are few drastic changes that can be made in that short amount of time in the NBA season. Since we played the Wiz last week we have played 3 other games and had about a practice and a half (and traveled across the country). It is almost like a playoff preparation for the second matchup in that we will look almost exclusively at our game against the opponent.

Read Full Scouting Report @ Lakers Courtside Connection


The Lakers currently lead the season series with Washington 1-0, after sweeping last season's series with Washington 2-0 for the third consecutive year. This will be the 178th meeting between the two franchises with the Lakers leading the all-time series 114-63. Over the past 30 years, the Lakers have lost just two season series to Washington (1975-76; 1-3 and 2004-05; 0-2). The Lakers are 8-2 in their last 10 overall meetings with the Wizards but have taken their last eight straight from Washington. At STAPLES Center, the Lakers are 10-2 all-time against the Wizards. In Washington, the Lakers have won four straight and have gone 7-3 in their last 10 games at Verizon Center. Under head coach Phil Jackson, Los Angeles is 17-4 against Washington. On December 17, 2006 at STAPLES Center, Gilbert Arenas and Kobe Bryant became only the seventh pair of opponents to put up 60-plus points and 45-plus points in the same game. In that game, Arenas became just the 8th player to score 60+ points against the Lakers while establishing a series record for points. Bryant's Los Angeles series record 55 points against Washington came against the Michael Jordan-led Wizards in March of 2003 at STAPLES Center. In 25 career games including 21 starts, Bryant is averaging 25.4 points against Washington. Additionally, Luke Walton and Wizards guard Gilbert Arenas played collegiately together at the University of Arizona. Lakers General Manager Mitch Kupchak was a member of the 1977-78 Washington Bullets NBA Championship team. Wizards guard Nick Young played collegiately at USC (2004-07) and in high school locally at Cleveland HS in Reseda, CA. Wizards assistant coach Mike Wells was an assistant coach on the Lakers bench for the 2004-05 season.

With 23 points at Chicago (12/10/10), Kobe Bryant (26,430) passed John Havlicek (26,395) for 11th on the NBA's all-time scoring list. Should he continue to score anywhere near his current pace (26.7 ppg), Bryant would move to 6th on the all-time list by season's end. Next on the all-time list ahead of Bryant are Dominique Wilkins (10th/26,668), Oscar Robertson (9th/26,710), Hakeem Olajuwon (8th/26,946), Elvin Hayes (7th/27,313) and Moses Malone (6th/27,409).

Bryant has been steadily moving up the list over the past few years and last season alone, passed Alex English (25,613), Reggie Miller (25,279), Jerry West (25,192), Patrick Ewing (24,815) and Allen Iverson (24,368). In passing West with a slam dunk at the 4:14 mark of the third quarter February 1, 2010 at Memphis, finishing the game with 44 points (West's retired number), Bryant became the leading scorer in Lakers franchise history. In 2008-09, Bryant passed Hall-of-Famers Charles Barkley (23,757), Robert Parish (23,334), Adrian Dantley (23,177), Elgin Baylor (23,149), Clyde Drexler (22,195), Gary Payton (21,813) and Larry Bird (21,791).

With his 29th point February 1, 2010 at Memphis, Kobe Bryant surpassed Jerry West as the Lakers all-time leading scorer. Additionally, having scored all his points with the Lakers, Bryant moved to sixth on the NBA's franchise career points list. On December 10, 2010 at Chicago, Bryant moved past John Havlicek (26,395) for 4th on this list. To date, only three players in league history have scored more points for a single franchise than Bryant.

Tuesday's game at Washington is the first of a back-to-back set with the Wizards and Pacers. This season, the Lakers are 3-1 in the first game and 3-1 in the second game of back-to-backs. On the year, the Lakers will play 15 sets of back-to-back games as opposed to the 20 they faced a season ago. The only other time the Lakers have played 15 or fewer sets of back-to-backs came in the team's first ever NBA season (1948-49) when they also played 15 sets of back-to-backs. Chicago, Milwaukee and Atlanta lead the league with 23 back-to-backs each in 2010-11 while Oklahoma City (17), Phoenix (16) and the Lakers (15) will play the fewest sets this season.

Known for his clutch shooting, Derek Fisher delivered once again for the Lakers in their 87-86 victory over the Clippers on December 8th, this time in game-winning fashion with a running three-foot layup high off the glass as the buzzer sounded. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, since the stat began being tracked prior to the 2000-01 season, Fisher now has five game winning field goals, four in the regular season and one in the playoffs (FGM in last 10 seconds of the 4th quarter or overtime). Only two, however, have actually come with the Lakers; the other being his famous 0.4 second buzzer beater 5/13/04 at San Antonio (74-73 win). Fisher's other game winners came with Utah (2/10/07 vs. NY (104-102 win) and Golden State (3/25/05 vs. MIL (118-117 win), 12/28/05 vs. BOS (111-109 win)).
Last season, teammate Kobe Bryant connected on six game-winners; the most game winning field goals of any player in a single season over the last 10 years (Carmelo Anthony ranks second on this list with five game-winning field goals in 2005-06). Since the start of the 2000-01 season, Bryant has 20 field goals that have given his team the lead within the last 10 seconds of a fourth quarter or overtime, the most in the league over that span.

Entering the Lakers game in Washington, Derek Fisher has played in 437 consecutive regular season games dating back to April 15, 2005, the longest consecutive games streak among all active NBA players. Fisher moved into the top position after Portland's Andre Miller (632) missed the Blazers game against Phoenix (12/7/10) due to NBA suspension. Additionally, Fisher has started 315 consecutive regular season games dating back to January 15, 2007, tops among all active players by more than a season's worth of games (2nd – Luis Scola). Former Laker A.C. Green holds the NBA record for most consecutive games played with 1,192 dating from 11/19/86 – 4/18/01 while a member of the Lakers, Phoenix Suns, Dallas Mavericks and Miami Heat.

With their 115-108 victory over Washington on December 7th, the Lakers recorded their FOURTH wire-to-wire win of the season. The Lakers other wire-to-wire victories came against the Warriors (10/31 vs. GS, 11/21 vs. GS) and Grizzlies (11/2 vs. MEM). Last year, the Lakers claimed NINE wire-to-wire victories (games in which they never trailed); seven during the regular season and two during the 2010 Playoffs (4/18 & 4/27 vs. Oklahoma City). During their previous championship run in 2008-09, the Lakers claimed 11 wire-to-wire victories; nine during the regular season and two during the 2009 Playoffs (4/29 vs. Utah & 5/17 vs. Houston). Last season, the Lakers also lost twice in wire-to-wire fashion (98-107 1/8/10 @ POR and 75-91 3/26/10 @ OKC).

The Lakers ended their first 4-game losing streak since April of '07 with a 113-80 victory over Sacramento (12/3/10). It's the second-largest margin of victory to end a losing streak of at least four games the Lakers have ever had. The Lakers ended a four-game losing streak by beating the Hawks by 46 points on January 9, 2004 (113-67).*

With 28 points, nine rebounds and five assists while shooting 10-for-10 from the field and 8-for-8 from the free throw line, Pau Gasol became just the third player in the NBA's shot clock era to record a perfect shooting night from the field and the line with at least 25 points, five rebounds and five assists. The only other players to accomplish this rare feat are Gary Payton in January of 1995 (32 points, 5 rebounds, 6 assists (14-14 FG, 3-3 FT)) and Charles Barkley in March of 1989 (31 points, 7 rebounds, 6 assists (10-10 FG, 9-9 FT)). Additionally, Gasol became the fifth Laker in franchise history to convert at least 10 field goals without a miss in a single game and the first to do so since Byron Scott went 10-for-10 2/26/86 at Dallas. Wilt Chamberlain converted a franchise record 14-of-14 field goals without a miss 3/11/69 vs. Detroit with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (11-11 FG twice) and Mitch Kupchak (11-11 FG) rounding out the list.

With 41 points November 28th versus Indiana, Kobe Bryant scored 40+ points for the 105th time (regular season) in his NBA career. Bryant last topped the 40-point mark in the regular season back on February 1, 2010 at Memphis when he scored 44 points while passing Jerry West to become the Lakers all-time leading scorer. Last season, Bryant eclipsed the 40-point mark eight times, with the Lakers going 7-1 in those games. In the history of the NBA, only two players have more career 40-point games: Wilt Chamberlain (271) and Michael Jordan (173). The Lakers are now 72-33 all-time in games that Bryant scores 40+ points. Bryant holds the Lakers franchise record for 40- point games in a single season, recording 27 during the 2005-06 campaign. Bryant also holds the franchise record for most consecutive 40-point games (9), established during the 2002-03 season. Only Wilt Chamberlain (14 twice, 10 once) has had longer consecutive 40-point game streaks in league history than Bryant.

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