GAMEDAY LINKS: Team Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Final
Box Score Sacramento Kings 30 29 26 15 100
Play by Play Los Angeles Lakers 33 22 16 24 95


Cousins scores 27, Kings stun Lakers 100-95

By GREG BEACHAM

LOS ANGELES (AP) DeMarcus Cousins had 27 points and 10 rebounds, Omri Casspi added 20 points and the Sacramento Kings snapped an eight-game losing streak to the Los Angeles Lakers with a stunning 100-95 victory over the two-time defending champions on Friday night.

Kobe Bryant passed Hakeem Olajuwon for eighth place on the NBA's career scoring list while scoring 21 of his 38 points in the first quarter, but the Lakers apparently got caught looking ahead to Sunday's NBA finals rematch with Boston.

Samuel Dalembert scored 18 points as the Kings (11-33) jumped to a 20-point lead in the third quarter against the Lakers' disinterested defense.

The Kings then survived the Lakers' late rally for their first win over their one-time archrivals since December 2008.

Even though captain Derek Fisher put a two-day ban on all talk and thought about the Celtics during Thursday's practice, the Lakers resembled the disorganized, disinterested bunch that overlooked Milwaukee in an embarrassing home loss four days before the Miami Heat's visit on Christmas - another blowout defeat.

Shannon Brown scored 17 points, but Pau Gasol struggled with nine points on 4-of-11 shooting, and Lamar Odom had just four points while missing all seven of his field goal attempts. Los Angeles has won 10 of 13, but just three of its last six heading into Sunday.

Cousins scored 22 points in the first half before finishing one point shy of his career high for the Kings, who pulled the upset despite having the NBA's third-worst record after losing eight of their previous 10.

The Kings hadn't beaten the Lakers anywhere since December 2008, and this victory was their third impressive road win in the past three weeks. Sacramento also won at New York and Portland before posting its first road win over the Lakers since March 2008.

Dalembert and Casspi led a crisp 18-4 run after halftime, and Sacramento eventually went ahead 81-61 midway through the third quarter. Dalembert took over where Cousins left off exploiting Los Angeles' 7-footers from the perimeter, hitting his first five shots after halftime.

The Lakers trimmed the lead to 14 points heading into the fourth quarter, and consecutive dunks by Bryant and Gasol cut Sacramento's edge to 93-89 with 3:19 to play. But the Lakers got just one point out of their next three possessions, and Casspi tipped home Tyreke Evans' missed jumper with 1:29 to play before the Kings hit free throws in the final minute.

Evans had 13 points for Sacramento, and Carl Landry added 12.

In Bryant's first game since earning a starting spot at Staples Center next month in his 13th All-Star game, the leading All-Star vote-getter needed 13 points to pass Olajuwon. He got them all in the first 8 1/2 minutes, breaking downcourt for a one-handed jam for the decisive 24,947th point.

The Kings were in top offensive form despite Bryant's monster first quarter, scoring from all over the court against Los Angeles' step-slow defense to take a 59-55 halftime lead.

NOTES: Cousins and Gasol exchanged angry looks and lightly bumped chests with 2:52 to play after Gasol forced a turnover by pressuring Cousins near the Lakers' bench. ... The lead changed hands on 11 consecutive scoring possessions during a five-minute span in the second quarter. ... Fans entering Staples Center were told they might appear in "Jack and Jill," a movie starring Adam Sandler, Al Pacino and Katie Holmes. Director Dennis Dugan ("Happy Gilmore") was in the building with a crew. ... Fans near courtside included Joe Walsh, Nicky Hilton and Robert Horry.


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26,972 Points scored in the career of Kobe Bryant, which places him at No. 8 on the all-time scoring list. With his 13th point in the first quarter that came on a one-handed dunk, Bryant surpassed Hakeem Olajuwon (26,946 points).

45 Combined points for DeMarcus Cousins (27) and Samuel Dalembert (18), whom Phil Jackson said "took it to our guys" from the outset. Cousins caught fire in the first quarter and Dalembert in the third, together helping the Kings outrebound the Lakers 42-36.

38 Points in a losing effort for Bryant, who started the game hot but finished only 2-of-12 in the fourth quarter to get to 13-for-27 in the game.

21 First quarter points for Bryant on 8-of-11 field goals.

4 Shots made by both Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum, who combined for only 21 points, six fewer than Kings rookie DeMarcus Cousins.

0 Shots made by Lamar Odom, who was 0-for-7 from the field. He did have eight rebounds, four assists and two blocks.




View More Photos


Points Bryant 13-27 FG 38
Rebounds Gasol 7 OFF 3 DEF 11
Assists Bryant 7
Steals Bryant 3
Blocks Gasol, Odom 2

POSTGAME QUOTES

Lakers coach Phil Jackson on the game tonight:
"Their big guys came out and really took it after our guys and carried the day for their team. We got off track in the 3rd quarter when we made seven turnovers, so we got behind. Dug a hole for ourselves that was too big to escape, I guess."

Lakers coach Phil Jackson on losing to teams that have lower records than the Lakers:
"Some teams play better than you do some nights and they're more prepared and ready to play. I can think of all those nights as being teams that really came out and won; proved something, wanted the game a little bit more than we did."

Lakers coach Phil Jackson on whether or not he is surprised of the Lakers loss tonight:
"I think we're surprised. We played some defense in the fourth quarter, but it seems to be the only quarter we could really get up and defend."

Lakers coach Phil Jackson on Pau Gasol's performance tonight:
"They kept [Andrew] Bynum off balance tonight. Pau [Gasol] never really had opportunities that he normally has; high-post, low-post type of things. He made a couple shots down the stretch that could have brought the game to 2 points both times…looks like he got fouled on the 97-93 mark and there was no call. I like their [Lakers] intent in the fourth quarter that they got their backs up a little bit, and came out and played the kind of game we want to play aggressively. You can't play that [aggressively] for 48 minutes, but we certainly have to be able to do that."



Lakers' Kobe Bryant on losing to teams with losing records:
"Well, tonight we just didn't execute very well. Defensively we were a little out of sync, slow in our rotations, and it cost us."

Lakers' Kobe Bryant on what it means when the defense can't be there night in and night out:

"It means we're just still getting better. We've still got work to do. That's all."

Lakers' Kobe Bryant on passing Hakeem Olajuwon on the scoring list and Sunday's game:
"I mean, it's obviously a huge honor. I've been playing for a while and these milestones mean a lot. As far as the game on Sunday, I know they had a tough one tonight, as well. I'm sure they'll be looking to come in on Sunday and seek a little redemption, but we'll be ready too."

Lakers' Kobe Bryant on the biggest challenge for Sunday's game:
"It's Rondo…it's Rondo. He's a catalyst, he makes things go. Both ends of the floor, Kevin obviously is a captain defensively, but you know, Rondo's all over the place and his play making ability, and I think that's the biggest challenge."

Lakers' Kobe Bryant on looking past tonight's loss and moving on to face the Celtics:
"I don't know, I don't think so. Maybe a little bit, but I doubt it. We just weren't sharp defensively. Like you have games sometimes you're not sharp offensively, and tonight we weren't sharp defensively at all."





Lakers' Lamar Odom on the loss and his team's defense:
"Teams come in here, and they are looking for a W. When you don't do the small things you need to do defensively to take people out of the game, make it uncomfortable, any given team can win in the NBA on any given night."

Lakers' Lamar Odom on tonight's loss:
"They played well. To win the game it takes a team effort. It's not just the guys with the stats it's all-around. Everybody on their team played well. Everybody. They beat us."







Lakers' Andrew Bynum on moving past tonight's loss:
"We definitely have to. We lost a game here that we probably shouldn't have lost and we have to get it back against Boston. Schedule is just going to get tougher [as we] go on the road."






Lakers' Pau Gasol on the tonight's matchup down low:
"They got a lot of good looks and they were hitting a lot of shots. And we weren't getting very good looks, and weren't hitting the looks that we got."





Kings' Coach Paul Westphal on beating the Lakers on the road:
"It feels good, obviously. You can't say it doesn't. I'm proud of our guys. We played good defense and we beat a great team on the road primarily because of our defense."

Kings' Coach Paul Westphal on the Kings' progress this season:
"We did struggle a whole lot at the end, but we did hold on at the end. That's big progress from some of the things we've had happen to us earlier in the year. I think our team is growing."

Kings' Coach Paul Westphal on what he told his team down the stretch:
"We said keep doing what you're doing. [We had] the lead, there were however many minutes left and just keep playing. Win the next three minutes, win the next three minutes."

Kings' Coach Paul Westphal on Kobe Bryant's 21 point first quarter:
"Sometimes he's unstoppable, other times he misses a little bit. We tried the same thing everybody else did. You double him at different times, try to push him certain ways, but in general he's not that affected by the defense."

Kings' Coach Paul Westphal on Omri Casspi's defense on Kobe Bryant:
"I thought Omri Casspi did a great job on him. He made him work for everything and that's all you can really do. I told Omri, 'You know, you did a great job, you held him to 38. He only got 37 on you though so it was alright.'"



Kings forward Carl Landry on closing out the game against the Lakers:
"It felt good but it was tough. We went into the fourth quarter with the lead and almost gave it away. The Lakers did a great job of getting back into the game. We missed a couple free throws at the end but we did just enough to get the victory."



Kings forward DeMarcus Cousins on how it feels to beat the Lakers on the road:
"It was a big win for our team. It shows that we can beat some good teams and we can be a good team. We just have to continue to grow."

Kings forward DeMarcus Cousins on the gameplan going into tonight's game:
"Kobe is going to get his number. It's Kobe. But you have to try to contain the rest of the team and keep them quiet. Then you got a good chance."

Kings forward DeMarcus Cousins on his individual performance tonight:
"Tyreke has been complaining to me all year to just shoot the shot. Just shoot it. And Francisco Garcia told me to come out and be aggressive tonight. That's what I did."





Kings guard Tyreke Evans on beating the Lakers on their home floor:
"We just came out aggressive. We knew these were the world champs. They were going to come out and play hard and we just tried to match that."

Kings guard Tyreke Evans on his team's execution towards the end of the game:
"We know what they are capable of doing. They play well together. They got rings together. They know what to do in those types of situations. So we just wanted to come out and be aggressive for 48 minutes."








LAKERS VS. KINGS GAME PREVIEW

By JEFF MEZYDLO, STATS Senior Writer

While their former general manager might not think much of how the Los Angeles Lakers play defense, the team itself and most of the NBA might beg to differ.

Especially, the Sacramento Kings.

Coming off another solid defensive effort, the Lakers look to further flex their muscle on that end of the court while trying for a ninth straight victory over the Kings on Friday night at Staples Center.

Hall-of-Famer and former Lakers general manager Jerry West predicted last week at a speech in southern California, that the age of the two-time defending NBA champions will catch up to them.

Kobe Bryant, who will make his 13th straight All-Star start in his home arena next month, doesn't see it that way.

"We've been pretty good on defense all year," he said. "The numbers don't lie."

Though 10 of the Lakers are 30 or older - including Bryant (32),Derek Fisher (36), Ron Artest (31) and Pau Gasol (30) - they are giving up 96.3 points per game and have allowed fewer than 100 in 21 of 25 contests.

"We focus in on defense game-to-game," 31-year-old forwardLamar Odom told the Lakers' official website. "It makes all the difference. That's where you get better and it's starting to show a little."

Los Angeles (33-13) held Utah to 41.9 percent shooting en route to its 10th win in 12 games, 120-91 on Tuesday.

"They didn't look old, they didn't look tired and they didn't look like they couldn't play defense to me," Jazz star guard Deron Williams said.

Sacramento (10-33) likely would echo that sentiment.

The Kings have averaged 90.0 points and shot 42.3 percent while going 0-2 against the Lakers this season. Sacramento shot 40.3 percent and committed 21 turnovers in a 113-80 loss on Dec. 3 at Los Angeles.

Los Angeles, which shot 56.6 percent that in that contest, has made 50.5 percent of its shots and averaged 113.7 points during a six-game home winning streak over the Kings.

Bryant had 22 points versus Sacramento last month, but is averaging 31.8 his last five games against the Kings.

Despite the recent success versus Sacramento, Odom expects the Lakers not to suffer a letdown after dominating the playoff-contending Jazz.

"We're a mature team that's used to playing in big games, but we realize that we have a team in front of us in Sacramento that's going to come in here and play hard on our floor," Odom said. "It will be easy to remain focused."

The Kings hope to put up a better fight than in their last meeting with Lakers, and more like the one during a 119-112 overtime win at Portland on Monday.

Sacramento made half its shots from the field against the Trail Blazers, then shot 36.0 percent the next night in a 94-89 home loss to Charlotte.

"We have had a lot of ups and downs," forward Omri Casspi told the Kings' official website. "Unfortunately, we managed to lose a lot of games, which were close games for us. It's something we want to change this half of the season."

Reigning rookie of the year Tyreke Evan has averaged 26.7 points the last three contests but totaled 25 in two career road games against the Lakers.



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 Matt Barnes (right knee surgery) is out.
Andrew Bynum (hyperextended right elbow / contusion to ulnar nerve, right arm) is probable.
Theo Ratliff
(left knee surgery) is doubtful.

Francisco Garcia (strained left calf) is out.



11/03 - LAL @ SAC W 112-100
12/03 - SAC @ LAL W 113-80
01/28 - SAC @ LAL
04/13 - LAL @ SAC


The Sacramento Kings come into Staples Center tonight with a 10-33 record having won only 2 of their last ten. This is the classic trap game as most of Los Angeles is already talking about Sunday afternoon's arrival of the gang green from Boston. It is important to note that one of Sacramento's recent wins was at Portland (and we all know how hard it has been for us to win their in recent years). We must approach this game tonight with a professional mindset. The Kings have some talented young players and have been in a lot of very close games that have slipped away late in the 4th quarters and overtimes. We need to come out of the gate strong so these young athletes don't gain confidence over the course of the game.

Read Full Scouting Report @ Lakers Courtside Connection


GAME NOTES

SEASON& SERIES NOTES; CONNECTIONS
The Lakers currently lead their season series with Sacramento 2-0, after sweeping last season's series 4-0. The two franchises have met 275 times overall and 111 times since the Kings moved to Sacramento. The Lakers lead the all-time series with the Kings 189-86 (81- 30 vs. Sacramento). In their last 10 meetings, the Lakers are 9-1 against Sacramento, including winners of their last 8 straight. The Lakers are 16-7 all-time against the Kings at STAPLES Center and have gone 8-2 in their last 10 home contests. The Lakers are 7-3 in their last 10 games at ARCO Arena including an 8-1 mark in their past nine trips to the state capitol. In their most recent meeting, 12/3/10 at STAPLES Center, the Lakers defeated the Kings by 33 points, their largest victory over the Kings since a 33-point win 12/22/95. On 11/3/10, Kobe Bryant recorded his 17th career triple-double while passing Kareem Abdul- Jabbar as the franchise leader for career minutes in a 112-100 Lakers victory at ARCO Arena. On 12/26/09, the Lakers defeated the Kings 112-103 in double-overtime at ARCO Arena, while using a Kobe Bryant three-point buzzer-beater to win their second meeting of the season 109-108 at STAPLES Center on 1/1/10. Two seasons ago, 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. 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 29-13 against the Kings. In 52 career games against the Kings including 44 starts, Kobe Bryant is averaging 26.3 points. Pau Gasol has also averaged 20+ points for his career against the Kings, posting 21.3 points per game in 35 meetings (all starts). 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, no Kings remain on the current roster from that playoff series.

BRYANT 12 POINTS SHY OF HAKEEM OLAJUWON FOR 8th ON NBA'S ALL-TIME SCORING LIST
With 21 points 1/25 vs. Utah, Kobe Bryant moved to within 12 points of Hakeem Olajuwon (26,946) for 8th on the NBA's all-time scoring list. Earlier this month, Bryant moved past Oscar Robertson (26,710) 1/7 vs. New Orleans and Dominique Wilkins (26,668) 1/4 vs. Detroit on the all-time list. Should he continue to score anywhere near his current pace (24.9 ppg), Bryant (26,934) would move to 6th on the all-time list by season's end. Next on the all-time list ahead of Bryant and Olajuwon are Elvin Hayes (7th/27,313) and Moses Malone (6th/27,409). Among the top nine scorers in NBA history, more than half (5) have worn the Lakers uniform (1st/Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, 2nd/Karl Malone, 4th/Wilt Chamberlain, 5th/Shaquille O'Neal and 9th/Bryant).

Bryant has been steadily moving up the list over the past few years. Earlier this season, with 23 points at Chicago (12/10/10), he passed John Havlicek (26,395) for 11th. Last season, he 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 Gary Payton (21,813) and Hall-of-Famers Charles Barkley (23,757), Robert Parish (23,334), Adrian Dantley (23,177), Elgin Baylor (23,149), Clyde Drexler (22,195) and Larry Bird (21,791).

BRYANT APPROACHING 27,000 CAREER POINTS
With 21 points January 25th vs. Utah, Kobe Bryant moved to within 66 points of 27,000 for his career. Bryant, the youngest player in league history to score 23,000 – 26,000 points, will be 31 years, 158 days old on Friday, January 28 when the Lakers face Sacramento. Wilt Chamberlain, currently the youngest player to score 27,000 points in league history, reached the milestone back on March 11, 1969 when he was 32 years, 202 days of age. Michael Jordan, the only guard in NBA history to score 27,000 points, reached the milestone November 5, 1997 when he was 34 years, 261 days of age. Additionally, in reaching 27,000 points, Bryant (1,067 games played) would become just the 8th player in NBA history to do so and should he achieve the mark by the end of February, the 5th fastest to do so in terms of games. Chamberlain was the fastest to reach 27,000, doing so in 780 games, followed by Jordan (852), Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (965), Karl Malone (1,035) and Shaquille O'Neal (1,083).

Earlier this season, with his 17th point November 11th at Denver, Bryant reached 26,000 for his career. In doing so, he became the youngest to do so in NBA history (32 years, 80 days), surpassing Wilt Chamberlain (32 years, 114 days) and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (33 years, 331 days). Additionally, Bryant became the 12th player in NBA history to score 26,000 points and the 8th fastest to do so (1,030) in terms of games, behind Shaquille O'Neal (1,022). Wilt Chamberlain was the fastest to reach 26,000, doing so in 734 games. Among the remaining top five scorers in NBA history (Chamberlain and O'Neal already mentioned), Michael Jordan reached 26,000 points in 815 games, Abdul-Jabbar in 925 games and Karl Malone in 997 games.

The youngest player in league history to accumulate 17,000 – 20,000 and 23,000 – 26,000 points, Bryant was the 20th fastest to 17,000, 16th fastest to 18,000, 15th fastest to 19,000, 15th fastest to 20,000, 12th fastest to 21,000, 12th fastest to 22,000, 11th fastest to 23,000, 9th fastest to 24,000, 9th fastest to 25,000 and 8th fastest to 26,000 points in terms of games.

DEREK FISHER AMONG PLAYERS ELIGIBLE FOR FAN VOTE IN 2011 TACO BELL SKILLS CHALLENGE
On January 27th, the NBA announced that for the first time, the league and Taco Bell are giving fans the opportunity to determine participants in the Taco Bell Skills Challenge as part of the "Choose Your Squad" program. In addition to adding a fan vote, the 2011 Taco Bell Skills Challenge will feature an expanded field from four to five participants. Beginning today and running through 11:59 p.m. ET on Feb. 14, fans can log on to NBA.com/chooseyoursquad to choose from among eight players to determine four of the five participants in the 2011 event in Los Angeles. The players taking part in the vote include: Stephen Curry, Baron Davis, Tyreke Evans, Derek Fisher, Tony Parker, Derrick Rose, John Wall and Russell Westbrook. The four finalists will compete against "Choose Your Squad" spokesman Chris Paul.

The event includes a new charitable twist from NBA Cares & Taco Bell Foundation for Teens' "Graduate to Go" program, a national initiative helping teens graduate from high school through real-world experiences. Each of the five participants will be matched with a teen member of a local Boys & Girls Club. The teen paired with the event winner will receive a 4-year college scholarship. The other scholarship winners each receive an educational scholarship courtesy of the Taco Bell Foundation for Teens.

Introduced at NBA All-Star 2003 in Atlanta – the Taco Bell® Skills Challenge will feature five players competing in a two-round timed "obstacle course" consisting of dribbling, passing, and shooting stations. All players must observe basic NBA ball-handling rules while completing the course. The two players with the fastest times from the first round advance to the finals with the order of competition determined by inverse order of the first-round times. The Taco Bell Skills Challenge will be televised live nationally as part of the NBA All-Star Saturday Night presented by State Farm, which will also feature the Foot Locker Three-Point Contest, Haier Shooting Stars, and Sprite Slam Dunk. TNT and ESPN Radio's national coverage will begin at 8 p.m. EST from STAPLES Center in Los Angeles.

30 WINS AT THE MID-POINT
With a 100-88 victory over the New Jersey Nets on January 14th, the Lakers improved to 30-11 on the season, marking the third consecutive year that they have reached the mid-point of their season with 30 or more wins. Last season, the Lakers held a 32-9 record at the halfway point after starting the 2008-09 season with a 33-8 mark. Over the past 10 seasons, the Sacramento Kings from 2001-04 are the only other NBA team to hit the mid-point with at least 30 wins in three consecutive seasons. Since the NBA went to an 82-game schedule prior to the 1967-68 season, the Lakers have now posted at least 30 wins by the mid-point 14 times, having also put together one additional three season streak from 1985-88.*

GASOL REACHES UNIQUE WELL-ROUNDED MILESTONE
With a four foot hook shot at the 1:00 mark of the second quarter 1/19 at Dallas, Pau Gasol scored his 13,000th career point in his 693rd career regular season game. Among players who debuted since 1973-74 (first season of blocked shots), Gasol, became the 6th fastest player in terms of games to record 13,000 points, 6,000 rebounds, 2,000 assists and 1,000 blocks. Only Chris Webber (587), Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (605), Tim Duncan (640), Kevin Garnett (657) and David Robinson (672) reached those totals faster than Gasol.

GASOL NAMED 2010 EUROPEAN PLAYER OF THE YEAR
In January, La Gazzetta dello Sport, one of the premier sports journals in the world, named Pau Gasol European Player of the Year for the THIRD consecutive year. The prestigious award was decided on by a panel of judges comprised of players, coaches and basketball journalists. Gasol beat out Dallas' Dirk Nowitzki (2nd), who had won the award five consecutive years from 2002-06, and the Spanish League's Juan Carlos Navarro (3rd) of FC Barcelona. The first Spanish player to win the award, Gasol joins Nowitzki as the only other player to win the award three-straight years. Other notable past winners include Arvydas Sabonis (6-time winner), Toni Kukoc (5-time winner), Drazen Petrovic (4-time winner) and Tony Parker.

A FOURTH QUARTER FIRST

Trailing by six entering the fourth quarter of their January 12th contest with Golden State, the Lakers outscored the Warriors 46-35 en route to a 115-110 victory at ORACLE Arena. The 46-point total marked the first time in franchise history (shot clock era) that the Lakers have scored 46 or more points in the fourth quarter of a road game. The last time the Lakers scored 46 or more points in any quarter on the road was on November 26, 1966 at St. Louis (48 points, first quarter). Overall, it was the Lakers highest scoring quarter since posting 46 points in the fourth quarter of a 127-99 victory 11/29/07 vs. Denver.

KOBE BRYANT LEADS ALL PLAYERS AFTER 4th ROUND OF ALL-STAR BALLOTING
On January 13th, the NBA announced its FOURTH and final returns update of 2011 NBA All-Star balloting before the official starting lineup announcement January 27th live at 7:00 pm EST on TNT. Kobe Bryant (1,757,216) continues to LEAD all players in All-Star voting, ahead of Dwight Howard (1,537,619) and LeBron James (1,518,807). Pau Gasol (851,456), who made his third All-Star team last season as a reserve, ranks 3rd among forwards in the West behind Kevin Durant (1,270,729) and Carmelo Anthony (945,720). Andrew Bynum (660,576) ranks 2nd among West centers behind Yao Ming (928,928), while Chris Paul (949,049) ranks 2nd among West guards behind Bryant. In the East, James and Amar'e Stoudemire (1,143,391) lead the forward voting, Dwyane Wade (1,499,768) and Derrick Rose (1,225,575) are the top two vote-getters at guard and Howard leads all East centers in balloting.
In each of the last three seasons, Bryant has led the Western Conference in all-star balloting. Last season, Bryant received 2,456,224 votes, finishing second overall to Cleveland's LeBron James (2,549,693). In 2008-09, he accumulated 2,805,397 votes, finishing third in overall balloting behind Dwight Howard (3,150,181) and 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 a 12-time All-Star and had started 11 consecutive All-Star games before missing last year's contest due to a sprained left ankle. Bryant, who was the youngest All-Star in NBA history in 1998, led all players in NBA All-Star balloting in 2003. Gasol has made three All-Star appearances (2006, 2009, 2010) and in 2009, became the 27th Laker in franchise history to be named to an All-Star team.

IRON MAN
Entering the Lakers game vs. Sacramento, Derek Fisher has played in 459 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 337 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.

WIRE-TO-WIRE
With their record setting 121-90 victory vs. Utah on January 25th, the Lakers recorded their league-leading EIGHTH wire-to-wire win of the season. Getting to seven wire- to-wire victories in just 39 games matched the Lakers regular season total from all of last season, while their eighth in 46 games surpassed that total. This season, the Lakers (8) lead the NBA in wire-to-wire victories, followed by the Celtics (7), Spurs (5) and Bucks (5) through games played 1/26/11. The Lakers other wire-to-wire victories this season came against the Warriors (10/31 vs. GS, 11/21 vs. GS), Grizzlies (11/2 vs. MEM), Wizards (12/7 vs. WAS), Pacers (12/15 @ IND), 76ers (12/31 vs. PHI) and Cavaliers (1/11 vs. CLE). 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).

FISHER NAMED 2010 "SPORTSMAN OF THE YEAR" BY LOS ANGELES SPORTS COUNCIL
On January 6th, the Los Angeles Sports Council announced that Lakers guard Derek Fisher will receive the prestigious 2010 Sportsman of the Year award at the 6th annual LA Sports Awards to be held Thursday, February 24th at the Beverly Hilton Hotel. The LA Sports Awards are presented annually by the Los Angeles Sports Council to celebrate the greatest moments of the year in local sports. The Sportsman award is given to the local male athlete whose performance and character best exemplified the ideals of sportsmanship during the calendar year. Past Sportsman of the Year honorees include Matt Leinart (2005), Elton Brand (2006), David Beckam (2007), Kobe Bryant (2008) and Pau Gasol (2009). The awards show will be televised on Fox Sports West (initial airing will be March 4th).

FAN VOTING BEGINS FOR LA SPORTS AWARDS
Southern California sports fans can cast their ballot for the 2010 LA Sports Awards, the annual televised awards show celebrating the greatest sports moments of the year in the Los Angeles/Orange County area. Through balloting at www.lasports.org, fans can vote on 14 different award categories. Voting takes place through January 31; winners will be revealed during the sixth annual LA Sports Awards on Thursday, February 24 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel. For voting purposes, each of the area's professional sports teams, major universities and associations has nominated its top moments from 2010 for fans to vote on. The top Lakers moments nominated include: Kobe Bryant becoming the Lakers franchise scoring leader, Phil Jackson becoming the Lakers all-time winningest coach, Lakers owner Dr. Jerry Buss being elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and the Lakers winning their 16th NBA Championship with a thrilling 83-79 win over the Boston Celtics in game 7 of the NBA Finals at STAPLES Center. To vote, go to www.lasports.org and click on the Greatest Moments icon at the top of the home page. The awards gala will be televised on Prime Ticket, with the initial airing on February 25, and will include special appearances by many of the athletes and coaches whose achievements helped make 2010 such a memorable year in sports. The awards ceremony will also feature a countdown of the year's Top 10 moments in ranked order as selected by a blue-ribbon media panel. Additionally, Derek Fisher will be receiving the prestigious 2010 Sportsman of the Year award, given yearly to the local male athlete whose performance and character best exemplified the ideals of sportsmanship during the calendar year, while the naming of Sportswoman, Coach and Sports Executive of the Year will also take place.






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