GAMEDAY LINKS: Team Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Final
Box Score Washington Wizards 21 28 32 25 106
Play by Play Los Angeles Lakers 29 35 19 18 101


Wizards come from 21 down, top Lakers 106-101

By JOSEPH WHITE


Posted Mar 07 2012 6:53PM

WASHINGTON (AP) Roger Mason led a spirited fourth-quarter comeback with nine points in the period, Kobe Bryant lost his shooting touch down the stretch, and the Washington Wizards rallied from a 21-point, third-quarter deficit Wednesday night to stun the Los Angeles Lakers 106-101.

Mason hit three 3-pointers in the fourth, turning what had been a pro-Lakers scene into an unusually raucous show of home support for a team that's 20 games below .500. The same arena that rocked to "M-V-P!" for Bryant in the first half was bellowing "Beat L.A.!" in the final minute.

Nick Young scored 19 points for the Wizards, who beat the Lakers for the first time since 2006.

Nick Young scored 19 points for the Wizards, who beat the Lakers for the first time since 2006 - a stretch of nine straight losses. Trevor Booker had 18 points and a career-high 17 rebounds, and Kevin Seraphin scored a career-high 14 points on 7-for-8 shooting.

Mason also finished with 14 points, and John Wall had nine assists to help make up for four points on 1-for-8 shooting.

Bryant scored 30, but he went 1 for 10 from the field in the fourth quarter. Pau Gasol had 19 points and 15 rebounds, and Andrew Bynum scored 19 points for the Lakers, who dropped both ends of a road back-to-back.

Mason's 3 at the start of the quarter gave the Wizards their first lead since the early minutes of the game, and another one pushed the lead to six with 4:51 to play. Seraphin's dunk - Washington's 10th of the game - and Young's jumper put the underdogs ahead 104-99 with 43 seconds left.

After a dunk by Gasol, Booker grabbed an offensive rebound on Wall's missed jumper to keep the Lakers at bay. The Wizards made two free throws in the final 15 seconds to help seal the win.

The Wizards were their usual disjointed selves well into the third quarter, mixing dunks with misfired alley-oops and other failed attempts at flash. Jordan Crawford and Young were both 0 for 4 from 3-point range in the first half, and Wall didn't have a point until his dunk with 3:19 remaining in the third.

Young had a classic Wizards blooper in the second quarter, going up for an uncontested dunk only to have the ball slip out of his hands and fly over the backboard and into the rows of fans seated behind the basket.

The score was 76-55 when the Wizards started on a 26-7 run that pulled them within two at the end of the third quarter. Mason started the fourth by hitting a pair of 3s, and fellow reserve Seraphin twice gave the Washington back the lead after the Lakers had rallied.

Wearing a clear mask to protect his broken nose - he switched from a black one midgame the night before because it wasn't comfortable - Bryant put on a show in the first half. Among the highlights during a second-quarter stretch: a spot-on alley-oop pass to Josh McRoberts, a steal of a pass from Wall that led to a 3-pointer from Derek Fisher, a drive to a crowded paint in which he used his strength to create a three-point play, and a crossover move that embarrassed Crawford and drew oohs and aahs from the fans - even though Bryant then missed the open 3-pointer.

But Bryant, who said the Lakers "played a little tired" in an overtime loss at Detroit the night before, struggled down the stretch, as did his teammates. Los Angeles shot 6 for 21 in the fourth quarter.

Notes: Bryant is 12 points shy of 29,000 for his career. ... The Lakers wrap up their three-game road trip at Minnesota on Friday. ... Wizards F Rashard Lewis missed his fifth straight game with a sore left knee.

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Joseph White can be reached at http://twitter.com/JGWhiteAP


Copyright 2012 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





View More Photos


Points Bryant 30, 9-31 FG
Rebounds Gasol 15, 2 OFF 13 DEF
Assists Blake 7
Steals Bryant 4
Blocks Gasol 3


POSTGAME QUOTES



Mike Brown:

On tonight’s game:

“Obviously a tale of two halves. I thought in the first half we played the right way. In the second half we didn’t. We forced shots, and forcing shots is not a good thing for us. We’re not a team that can create on our own…we have to be an executing team, a spacing team, a team that moves the ball and moves bodies. In the second half we didn’t do it. The ball stuck a lot, we forced shots.”

On the Wizards:

“We were very, very careless with the basketball and those guys fed off it. It gave them life, got the crowd back into it and they won the ballgame. There’s nothing more than that. Guys had career nights against us because of the momentum they had from the bad shot selection we took, the lack of ball movement and the turnovers.”

On the Wizards’ rebounding:

“They were very active and, again, the crowd got into it. Their activity allowed them to come up with 50-50 balls and loose balls and long rebounds that we normally get. Tonight our defense wasn’t good, just like it wasn’t last night. Offensively we’ve got to figure out how to play the game the right way because we did play the game the right way in the first half but in the second half we just lost it.”

On the Lakers’ blown leads in two-straight games:

“The ball stopped moving offensively, the ball became stagnant. We took difficult shots which allowed our opponent to get out and run in transition and get some easy baskets.”




Kobe Bryant:

On the difference between the first and second half:

“It was effort. It was effort and execution.”

On the team’s effort:

“We’ve got to play harder. We have to play with a little bit more energy — get it going a little bit and try to salvage this trip.”

On Nick Young:

“He was terrific tonight. He had a great game.”




Pau Gasol:

On the Wizards’ rebounding:

“I’m always a little surprised when any team outrebounds us, with the size that we have on our team. They pursued the ball, they made a lot of jump shots and long shots. We all had to pay attention to rebounding and we all had to put bodies on bodies, and we didn’t do that very well tonight.”

On the Wizards:

“They played hard, they played really well. I don’t think they played tougher than we did, they just were active and they got to some balls that we didn’t and they had good games.”

On the last few games:

“In a way it’s a little bit embarrassing. With the kind of talent that we have and the players that we have here, to go out and not give a full effort and do the things that we’re supposed to do, it’s hard to see.”




Matt Barnes:

On the Lakers:

“You just have to compete. You have to compete. You’ve got to play 48 minutes. We’re always going to get teams’ best efforts every night, and I think this unit realizes that, and still we lack effort at times and teams are going to take advantage of that.”

On the Wizards:

“At times you let your guard down and teams are going to take advantage of that. I think Booker himself had eight offensive rebounds, and like five in the last couple minutes that kept plays alive, got them shots. Like I said, we’ve got to play 48 minutes.”




Randy Wittman:

On the overall game strategy:

“What a difference a day makes. These are the kinds of things we’ve been talking about with this team. Start to finish, even when we got down 21, we were doing the right things, we were doing them the right way. We were doing them hard and stayed in the game. That’s all we did. Then we started making some shots and the crowd got into it.”

On changing the team’s mentality:

“The momentum shifted and hopefully this can go a long way for us in terms of that mentality of staying in the game, and playing as hard as you can. You never know in an NBA game what’s going to happen. It doesn’t matter who you’re playing, and tonight that was it. We had some really big performances.”

On key shooters for the Wizards:

“I thought Mase (Roger Mason Jr.) came in and really got us lifted from the three, got our momentum up and then Nick added a little bit, too. Guys that shoot the ball made shots and the other guys that are shooters are like, yes, I like what I am seeing.”




John Wall:

On the game:

“They did a great job keeping me out of the lane. A lot of shots that normally go down just weren’t falling for me tonight. I realized it just wasn’t my night. Instead of shooting myself out of the game I tried to get my teammates more involved. The bench contributed tonight in a big way. The bench was a key component in our come back tonight. They deserve a lot of credit.”

On the comeback:

“We were down 20, but anytime you are down in this league there is a chance that you can come back. The second group just gave us the spark we needed. Players like Kevin Seraphin and Trevor Booker did a great job battling down low for us. This game allowed both of those players to play physical and be the aggressors. We sensed that the momentum was changing in the game when a lot of the calls were going in our favor. In the second half we wanted to be in the game and we needed the crowd to be on our side.”




Nick Young:

On the game:

“We came out with energy. We knew we were in a little slump but we had to pick up each other and fight. It was an amazing atmosphere tonight. We had to come out with the right attitude playing against the best team.”

On guarding Kobe:

“I was just doing the best I could, not going for his pump fakes. I grew up watching him and I knew everyone back at home was watching the game. I just went out there and gave it my all.”

On Kevin Seraphin:

“They were not ready for him. He played hard tonight. He used his strength and just had fun out there tonight. We know the type of potential that he has, he just slowed down tonight and played his game.”






Lakers-Pistons Preview

By JEFF MEZYDLO


After an impressive three-game winning stretch, a banged-up Kobe Bryant and the Los Angeles Lakers have come back down to earth.

Bryant and the visiting Lakers, though, have a good chance to bounce back from a frustrating loss when they try for a 10th straight victory over the lowly Washington Wizards on Wednesday night.

Sporting a protective mask after suffering a broken nose and a concussion during the All-Star game Feb. 26, Bryant averaged 34.0 points on 38-of-70 shooting (54.3 percent) during Los Angeles' three-game winning streak following the break.

Bryant's hot streak ended Tuesday, however, when he went 8 of 26 from the floor and finished with 22 points in an 88-85 overtime loss at Detroit. Though Bryant helped the Lakers (23-15) force overtime by hitting a 19-foot fadeaway at the buzzer, he was held to nine points on 2-of-10 shooting in the first half.

Fellow All-Star Andrew Bynum had a season-high 30 points with 14 rebounds and Pau Gasol added 20 with 10 boards, but Los Angeles lost for just the third time in 11 contests.

"Everyone played a little tired," said Bryant, the NBA's leading scorer at 28.7 points per game.

Coach Mike Brown was not happy watching his team shoot 42.0 percent while matching its third-lowest scoring game of the season - despite the extra five minutes - against an opponent that won for the 13th time.

"Nothing went well, and we paid for it with a loss," Brown said.

Plenty has gone right for the Lakers while averaging 111.3 points on 51.3 percent shooting during a nine-game winning streak over Washington, which dates to a 147-141 overtime home loss Dec. 17, 2006. Los Angeles has won five straight on the road against the Wizards since losing Dec. 26, 2005.

Bryant, who wore two different protective masks Tuesday, has averaged 29.9 points on 47.6 percent shooting in his last 17 games versus Washington - including eight 30-point efforts and three with more than 40.

That does not bode well for the Wizards (8-29), who matched a season high for points allowed Monday during a 120-100 home loss to Golden State. Nick Young scored 25 points off the bench and John Wall added 20 with 14 assists, but Washington trailed 41-24 after one quarter and allowed the Warriors to shoot 54.2 percent two nights after the Wizards snapped a six-game skid with a 101-98 win over Cleveland.

"We get one win and we come in with that effort to start the game," coach Randy Wittman said. "Inexcusable, and that's on me. ... That is unprofessional. I apologize to everybody that had to watch it."

Wall has been one of the few reasons for fans to watch the Wizards, averaging 25.7 points on 53.8 percent shooting in his last three games. He scored 22 and recorded 14 assists in his only previous game versus Los Angeles, a 115-108 loss at Staples Center on Dec. 7, 2010.

Like his coach, Wall was not happy about his team's performance Monday or the club's current attitude overall.

"Some guys knew, we lost the game before we came on the court," Wall said. "Too much joking in the locker room. Too much joking through warm-ups."

Copyright 2012 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

Probable Starters .
  Lakers    
  #15 World Peace SF #31 Singleton  
  #16 GasolPF #35 Booker  
  #17 Bynum C #34 McGee  
  #24 Bryant SG #15 Crawford  
  #2 Fisher PG #2 Wall  



Lakers Steve Blake
(costochaondral fracture) is probable.
Kobe Bryant
(nasal fracture, concussion) is day-to-day.

Ronny Turiaf
(fractured left hand) is out.
Rashard Lewis
(sore left knee) questionable.


Game 1: 3/07 - LAL @ WAS


GAME NOTES

SEASON & SERIES NOTES; CONNECTIONS
The Lakers swept last season’s series with the Wizards 2-0 for the fourth consecutive year and have won nine straight overall. This will be the 179th meeting between the two franchises with the Lakers leading the all-time series 115-63. 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 9-1 in their last 10 overall meetings with the Wizards. At STAPLES Center, the Lakers are 10-2 all-time against the Wizards. In Washington, the Lakers have won five straight and have gone 7-3 in their last 10 games at Verizon Center. Kobe 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 26 career games including 22 starts, Bryant is averaging 25.3 points against Washington. 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 center Ronny Turiaf played three seasons for the Lakers from 2005-08, averaging 5.5 points and 3.5 rebounds in 173 games. Wizards forward Maurice Evans played the entire 2006-07 season with the Lakers, averaging 8.4 points in 76 games, then played seven games for the Lakers during the 2007-08 season before being traded to Orlando, along with Brian Cook, for Trevor Ariza.


BRYANT SETS ALL-TIME RECORD FOR POINTS SCORED AT ONE ARENA
With 38 points in the Lakers 115-107 victory over the Sacramento Kings March 2nd at STAPLES Center, Kobe Bryant set the all-time record for points scored at one arena on the 50th anniversary of fellow Philadelphia native Wilt Chamberlain’s 100-point game. Bryant has now scored 13,788 points at STAPLES Center, passing Hakeem Olajuwon’s mark of 13,783 points tallied at Compaq Center, former home of the Houston Rockets. Olajuwon held the record since taking it from Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (12,529 points scored at the Forum) in March 1998.*


WIRE-TO-WIRE
With their 104-85 victory over the Timberwolves on February 29th, the Lakers recorded their FIRST wire-to-wire victory of the 2011-12 season. Last year, the Lakers led the NBA with 10 wire-to-wire victories (games in which they never trailed), all coming during the regular season. During the team’s two most recent championship runs, they recorded nine wire-to-wire victories in 2009-10 (seven during the regular season and two during the 2010 Playoffs (4/18 & 4/27 vs. Oklahoma City)) and 11 wire-towire victories in 2008-09 (nine during the regular season and two during the 2009 Playoffs (4/29 vs. Utah & 5/17 vs. Houston)). The Lakers have also lost one game this season in wire-to-wire fashion, falling to the Clippers 102-94 on January 14th. Last year, the Lakers lost two such games: (98-107 1/8/10 at POR & 75-91 3/26/10 at OKC).


LAKERS MAKE IT 17 STRAIGHT AGAINST THE TIMBERWOLVES
In defeating the Timberwolves 104-85 on February 29th, the Lakers extended their win streak against Minnesota to 17 games, the longest active win streak by one NBA team against another. The streak is the longest by the Lakers against another team since they defeated the Dallas Mavericks 19 straight times from 1995-99.*


KOBE BRYANT PASSES MICHAEL JORDAN FOR MOST CAREER POINTS IN ALL-STAR GAME HISTORY
At the 2012 NBA All-Star Game in Orlando, a Kobe Bryant fast-break dunk at the 4:57 mark of the third quarter moved him past Michael Jordan (262 points) for most career points in All-Star Game History. Bryant finished with 27 points on 9-of-17 shooting, helping the West to a 152-149 victory over the East. Bryant (271 points), who entered the game ranked 4th in career All-Star scoring, also passed Oscar Robertson (246 points) and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (251 points) on the night. Bryant, a 14-time All-Star and 4-time All-Star MVP, also tied Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Bob Cousy and Michael Jordan for the most All-Star starts in NBA history with 13. Andrew Bynum, the starting center for the Western Conference, made his first career All-Star appearance, but played just six minutes in order to rest his knee. Bynum finished with three rebounds, an assist and a steal, while blocking Dwight Howard’s first shot attempt.


WORLD PEACE RECORDS 1,500th CAREER STEAL
With a steal at the 2:04 mark of the second quarter 2/23 at Oklahoma City, Metta World Peace recorded his 1,500th career steal. World Peace is now the 5th active player to record at least 1,500 steals. Jason Kidd, Kobe Bryant, Kevin Garnett, Shawn Marion are the other four with Baron Davis just one assist shy of the milestone. World Peace, the 2004 NBA Defensive Player of the Year, has finished among the top-five in the NBA in steals per game five times in his career and has led his team in steals in 10 of his 12 NBA seasons. A two-time member of the NBA All-Defensive First Team (2004, 2006) and two-time NBA All-Defensive Second Team member (2003, 2009), World Peace currently ranks 37th on the NBA’s All-Time career steals list with 1,501 steals. Reggie Miller (1,505) and Julius Irving (1,508) are next up on the list.


LAKERS HOLD BLAZERS TO SEVEN FIRST QUARTER POINTS
In their 103-92 victory over the Trail Blazers on February 20 at STAPLES Center, the Lakers outscored Portland 29-7 in the first quarter, where they held the Trail Blazers to just 3-of-17 shooting and outrebounded Portland 21-5. The Blazers’ seven first quarter points marked their lowest first quarter points total in their 3,363-game history in the NBA. The total also matched the second lowest first quarter points total allowed by the Lakers since moving to Los Angeles prior to the 1960-61 season; on February 4, 1987, the Lakers outscored the Sacramento Kings 40-4 in the first quarter in a 128-92 victory at The Forum and on January 9, 2004, the Lakers outscored the Atlanta Hawks 34-7 in the first period in a 113-67 victory at STAPLES Center. The last time the Lakers held a team to seven points or less in any quarter came back on December 9, 2009, when they outscored the Utah Jazz 28-6 in the fourth quarter in a 101-77 victory at STAPLES Center.*


*Statistical research assistance provided by the Elias Sports Bureau






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