GAMEDAY LINKS: Team Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Final
Box Score Memphis Grizzlies 28 28 17 29 102
Play by Play Los Angeles Lakers 24 22 24 26 96


Lakers take on the Memphis Grizzlies Sunday, March 25th at Staples Center at 7:30PM. Catch all the action on Fox Sports West and 710ESPN.


LOS ANGELES (AP) Rudy Gay scored 18 points and O.J. Mayo had 12 of his 16 in the fourth quarter, helping the Memphis Grizzlies avoid a winless road trip by beating the Los Angeles Lakers 102-96 on Sunday night.

Mike Conley added 13 points and Tony Allen had 12 for the Grizzlies, who squandered a 14-point third-quarter lead before pulling away in the fourth.

Andrew Bynum scored 30 points on 11-of-16 shooting to lead the Lakers. Kobe Bryant finished with 18 points after a slow start and Ramon Sessions also had 18 in his second start with Los Angeles. Pau Gasol had 16 points on just 4-of-15 shooting while adding 14 rebounds.

Mayo accounted for all the points during a 7-0 run in the fourth, during which the Grizzlies took an 89-76 lead.

Memphis bounced back from a 101-85 loss to the Clippers in the same building Saturday to head home with a 1-3 record on its West Coast trip.

The Grizzlies took their largest lead at 65-51 early in the third. The Lakers then came alive on the offensive end, scoring the next 15 points and going ahead 66-65 on Sessions' 3-pointer.

But the lead was short-lived as Memphis answered with an 8-0 run. Matt Barnes was whistled for a technical when he whipped the ball at Marc Gasol. Mayo hit the free throw and Hamed Haddadi made a short hook to make it 73-66.

Bryant wasn't involved in the offense early as the Lakers missed their first seven shots. He attempted just one shot in the opening nine minutes, missing a jumper, before hitting a 3-pointer from the wing for his first points.

Bryant later had a layup for his only other basket of the half, shooting 2 of 7. Gasol also struggled, missing his first four shots in going 2 of 10 at the break.

NOTES: The Lakers rallied from a 17-point second-half deficit in beating the Grizzlies 116-11 in double overtime March 13. . The Grizzlies avoided losing four straight on the road for the first time a six-game slide late in 2010. . Zach Randolph was playing his sixth game since returning from a torn knee ligament. He came off the bench against the Lakers after starting the three previous games.


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





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Points Bynum 30, 11-16 FG
Rebounds Gasol 14, 3 OFF 11 DEF
Assists Sessions 5
Steals 3 tied with 2
Blocks Bynum 2


POSTGAME QUOTES



Mike Brown:

Lakers coach Mike Brown’s opening statement:
“First of all you have got to give Memphis credit. I thought they did a heck of a job especially after dropping a few games. But coming in with the right focus and the right mindset and playing extremely hard from the beginning of the game and throughout most of the game, I thought they outworked us on both ends of the floor. I thought offensively, for us, we tried to attack on the strong side too much and it hurt us a little bit. I thought that the way they played defensively, their physicality, their energy that they brought to the table was very good throughout most of the night until we made that little run in the third. I thought we came out and we got after it which helped us take the lead and then they just went ahead and finished it down the stretch.”

Lakers coach Mike Brown on the team’s offense tonight:
“I thought that offensively, on the strong side we didn’t get the ball all the time on the back side and attack them. To give up 51.2% on 102 points, and 14 offensive rebounds with 21 second chance points, it’s going to be hard to beat a team like this. They shoot the ball well against us plus every available rebound they get and convert to points. It makes it extremely tough.”

Lakers coach Mike Brown on the comeback in the third quarter:
“Usually when that happens and you catch up with somebody and then usually you take the lead and if you don’t take the lead right away and it stays tight for a little bit, but the team that was up usually finds themselves again and creates a little bit of separation. That’s kind of what happened here tonight and then from there we didn’t execute or play with the same energy that we had that got us that lead in the first place.”

Lakers coach Mike Brown on the bench performance:
“It was a tough night for the bench, especially when you look at those guys and you compare it to their bench. I thought all their guys, especially both their bigs, [Hamed] Haddadi and Zach Randolph, with 20 points between the two of them and 18 rebounds, played well. But we didn’t get much production from the guys that we put out on the floor in terms of scoring but again, we mix our starters with our bench guys and that’s part of why they don’t score as much.”




Andrew Bynum:

Lakers’ Andrew Bynum on what went wrong tonight:
“Defense just let us down.”

Lakers’ Andrew Bynum on what they need to do to improve offensively:
“We can’t have so much isolation, especially with our transition defense the way it is, guys are apt to get back if the ball’s not moving around. So, I need to play better defense, I need to come up with a double-double, get more rebounds before. The last four games I haven’t had more than ten boards and we went two and two, I think that kind of shows something.”

Lakers’ Andrew Bynum on their 15-0 run in the third quarter:
“We got low, everybody was in the stance. We saw an opportunity, we got it, and then we relaxed as soon as we got it…”




Pau Gasol:

Lakers’ Pau Gasol on the Grizzlies energy:
“They just had a little more hunger than we did. They came off 3 or 4 loses in a row and they came out ready to play. They had better energy than we did even though they played yesterday. The first half we put ourselves in a hole.”

Lakers’ Pau Gasol on the energy shift after the third quarter:
“That was the kind of energy we needed throughout the whole game, for 48 minutes not just got 12 or 24. We need to play with aggressiveness and intensity for longer periods of time.”

Lakers’ Pau Gasol on why they need to focus on both defense and offense:
“We can’t ignore what’s going to make us a great team and what’s going to make us a great team is playing defensively and playing solid at that end of the floor. Offensively, whether we play better or more confidently or not, we just have to be more consistent on the defensive end of the floor.”




Ramon Sessions:

Lakers’ Ramon Sessions on what went wrong tonight:
“They just came out and played a great game. I think the lag was on the defensive end probably. There were some good passes, Randolph was doing something unusual, he was hitting guys off the cutter which was big for them. I think it was just the defensive lag. They hit some big shots when we were trying to get a run going.”

Lakers’ Ramon Sessions on what the team needs to do to turn it around:
“Be consistent on the defensive end. The last two games I felt like we came out and played with a lot of energy. Tonight was one of those games where the energy wasn’t really there. We turned it on in the second half to cut the lead down, but they went on another run and it was a little too late at the end.”




Kobe Bryant:

Lakers’ Kobe Bryant on what makes the Grizzlies a good team:
“Their versatility- they are very versatile. They have great size, great speed, good passers. Their bigs are extremely good passers.”

Lakers’ Kobe Bryant on the Grizzlies defense:
“They are very good defensively. They have active hands. They get a lot of steals.”




Lionel Hollins:

Grizzlies coach Lionel Hollins on the team’s win tonight:
“We got off to a really good start. Our starters came and played with a lot of heart and passion. We defended and the bench played really well and gave us some valuable minutes. We played with a renewed spirit and renewed energy that we hadn’t played with in awhile.”

Grizzlies coach Lionel Hollins on his team responding to the Lakers’ runs:
“Anytime you play a great team that has great players, you can never expect them not to make a run. They made their run, we showed some poise and we came back and regrouped. We showed a lot of poise to withstand that run because they actually took the lead and we fought back at the end of the quarter, so we did what we needed to do.”

Grizzlies coach Lionel Hollins on the team bouncing back from last night’s loss:
“When you’re a competitor and you play competitive sports, the one thing that is evident throughout your whole career is resiliency. You have good character and you’re a competitor, you bounce back from tough losses, from bad losses and the next day, you’re looking for another opportunity. We had an opportunity to make amends for last night not by winning, but by playing the way we’re capable of playing. And that’s what you ask for of your team.”

Grizzlies coach Lionel Hollins on his team maintaining consistent energy on a night-to-night basis despite the condensed schedule:
“I think we’ve done a great job of it. Just recently, I thought we got stagnant standing around and watching everybody. We added Zach [Randolph] back in the mix and picked up Gilbert Arenas and I think everybody thought ‘I don’t have to do as much anymore.’ But the reality is that we have to play with the same effort and same energy and everybody has to contribute on the same high level in order for us to be successful.”



Rudy Gay:

Grizzlies’ Rudy Gay on the win:
“It was a big win for us because we lost so many in a row. This is not the year where you can give up a couple of games. We needed this game, we came out with a sense of urgency, and we got it.”

Grizzlies’ Rudy Gay on the team’s defensive effort:
“It started on the defensive end. When we watched tape before the game and even during halftime, we knew we needed to limit their easy shots. We did that in the first half and we did it in the second half too.”

Grizzlies’ Rudy Gay on being aggressive early:
“I wanted to be aggressive. I had a conversation with coach earlier today and he told me to be more aggressive and be more assertive. Also my teammates told me to be more assertive. I was kind of in ‘la-la’ land for the last couple of games. I wanted to get out and play hard.”

Grizzlies’ Rudy Gay on coming back strong after the Lakers made their run:
“Kobe Bryant is on that team. Everyone knew they were going to make a run. He’s capable of doing great things and making big shots. We came back with our offense and it took everyone. Everyone played well.”



Mike Conley:

Grizzlies’ Mike Conley on the win:
“We need the same effort regardless of who we’re playing. That losing streak we went on really woke up a lot of people. We had guys being more accountable and tonight we played more like a unit. We understand we can beat anyone on any night so we have to be able to play like it every night.”

Grizzlies’ Mike Conley on guarding Ramon Sessions:
“It was a little different with him being aggressive in pick and roles especially when they get the ball to Kobe. I get caught in between helping and getting back out to Sessions. He’s such a great shooter it’s hard to help on Kobe, but when you sink too much he hits the three.”






Grizzlies-Lakers Preview

By JEFF MEZYDLO


A trip west has not been kind to the reeling Memphis Grizzlies.

After being blown out in Los Angeles in their last contest, the Grizzlies hope for a better effort at Staples Center on Sunday night when they try to avoid being swept on their four-game trek by snapping a three-game skid against the Lakers.

Memphis (25-21) was competitive despite falling 119-110 at Sacramento and 97-93 at Portland to open the road stretch, but the Grizzlies were outscored 33-17 in the first quarter and never recovered during Saturday’s 101-85 loss to the Clippers.

The Grizzlies have lost six of eight since an 11-2 stretch and are starting to slip in the Western Conference standings.

“It’s very disturbing because we don’t have a rhythm,” coach Lionel Hollins said. “We have to do a better job with our bench play and with our starters.”

Facing a Lakers team that has won two in a row and seven of nine likely will not make it easy for Memphis to salvage something positive on the trip. Without stars Zach Randolph and Rudy Gay, the Grizzlies lost 116-111 at home in double overtime to Los Angeles on March 13.

The shorthanded Grizzlies blew a nine-point lead after three quarters in that contest.

“We played a great game, and we should have won the game,” Hollins said. “We had a few mental lapses at key times. As I’m always telling those guys, it’s the small things that win or lose games.”

Memphis has dropped three straight to the Lakers, each by nine or fewer points. However, having Gay and Randolph healthy again should give the club some confidence as they look to avoid matching a season high with their fourth consecutive defeat.

Limited to nine games this season because of a knee injury, Randolph has averaged 21.5 points and 10.5 rebounds in his last six road contests against the Lakers.

Gay is averaging a team-high 18.8 points, but he’s been held to 21 total over the last two games. He scored 19 in a 90-82 loss to the Lakers at Staples Center on Jan. 8.

Los Angeles All-Star Andrew Bynum had 37 points and 16 rebounds versus Memphis last week, while Kobe Bryant added 34. Bryant scored 26 and dished out nine assists during Los Angeles’ January home win over the Grizzlies.

Bynum had 28 points and recently acquired guard Ramon Sessions added 20 with 11 assists Friday as the Lakers improved to 20-3 at home with a 103-96 win over Portland. Los Angeles recorded a season-high 33 assists and outrebounded the Trail Blazers 53-29.

“We just have to continue to do what we do,” Bryant told the Lakers’ official website.

While Bryant, Bynum and Pau Gasol make up the Lakers’ core, contributions from role players like Sessions will be needed if the club wants to make it out of the West. Acquired last week from Cleveland for Jason Kapono and Luke Walton, Sessions is averaging 13.6 points and 7.0 assists in five games with the Lakers.

“Ramon’s a big part of it,” Bryant said of the fifth-year guard. “With the talent level he has, it’s a pretty easy transition for him.”

Sessions had 20 points and 11 assists last season in his most recent game against the Grizzlies while with the Cavaliers.

Probable Starters
  Lakers    
  #15 World Peace SF #22 Gay  
  #16 Gasol PF #50 Randolph  
  #17 Bynum C #33 Gasol  
  #24 Bryant SG #9 Allen  
  #7 Sessions PG #11 Conley  



Lakers None

Darrell Arthur
(torn right Achillies) is out.


Game 1: 1/08 - MEM @ LAL W 90 - 82
Game 2: 3/13 - LAL @ MEM W 116 - 111
Game 3: 3/25 - MEM @ LAL


GAME NOTES

SEASON & SERIES NOTES; CONNECTIONS
The Lakers lead the season series with Memphis 2-0 after splitting last season’s series 2-2. This will be the 63rd meeting between the two franchises and the 40th since the Grizzlies moved to Memphis. In that time, the Lakers have lost just two season series to the Grizzlies (2004-05, 2005-06). The Lakers lead the all-time series 46-16 but are just 24-15 versus the Grizzlies since the team moved to Memphis. In their last 10 meetings with Memphis, the Lakers are 7-3 overall. The Lakers are 5-1 in their last six home games against Memphis and 16-6 all-time at STAPLES Center against the Grizzlies. In Memphis, the Lakers have gone 7-3 in their last 10 road games at FedExForum. In their first meeting of the 2010-11 season, the Lakers scored a series-high 124 points in a 124-105 victory 11/2/10 vs. Memphis. In their most recent meeting (3/13/12 @ MEM), the Lakers came back from a 17-point second half deficit to defeat the Grizzlies in double-overtime. In their last meeting of the 2008-09 season (4/12/09), the Lakers held Memphis to a series low 75 points, surpassing the old record of 79 points (2/14/05 @ MEM). Individually, Kobe Bryant is averaging 24.9 points for his career against the Grizzlies (56 games, 49 starts). In 2007-08, Bryant scored an NBA season-high 53 points 3/28/08 vs. Memphis. Four seasons ago in Memphis (3/22/07), Bryant scored a series-high 60 points, becoming only the 3rd player in NBA history to score 50+ points in three consecutive games. 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 12 games against his former team, Pau is averaging 15.5 points, 10.2 rebounds, 3.9 assists and 1.50 blocks. 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 6-plus years with Memphis. Also, Lakers forward Josh McRoberts played on the same high school AAU team (Spiece Indy Heat) as Grizzlies guard Mike Conley Jr. (Greg Oden & Daequan Cook were also on team).


ANDREW BYNUM NAMED WESTERN CONFERENCE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
On March 19, the NBA announced that Andrew Bynum had earned Western Conference Player of the Week for games played Monday, March 12 through Sunday, March 18, giving him the SECOND WC Player of the Week award of his career. Bynum led the Lakers to a 3-1 week, including back-to-back road wins against Memphis and New Orleans and a home victory against Minnesota. Averaging 27.5 points and 14.8 rebounds, while shooting 66.5% from the field, Bynum led the Western Conference in rebounding, placed second in the conference in scoring and finished fourth in the West in field-goal percentage on the week. Bynum collected point-rebound doubledoubles in all four of the Lakers games, including 37 points (15-18 FG) and 16 rebounds 3/13 @ Memphis, 25 points and 19 rebounds 3/14 @ New Orleans and 33 points (12-14 FG) and 11 rebounds 3/18 vs. Utah. Bynum’s first career WC Player of the Week award was earned back on January 26, 2009, when Bynum averaged 23.5 points, 11.5 rebounds and 2.25 blocks in helping lead the Lakers to a 4-0 week from 1/19/09 to 1/25/09.


BYNUM ON A ROLL
With 33 points (12-of-14 FG (85.7 percent), 9-of-12 FT) against the Utah Jazz on March 18th, Andrew Bynum recorded his fourth career 30+ point game, but third in his last eight contests. Scoring 37 points in the Lakers double overtime victory over the Memphis Grizzlies on March 13th, going 15-of-18 from the field (83.3 percent), Bynum’s night marked just the fourth time in Lakers history that a player has scored at least 37 points on better than 83 percent shooting. The last Laker to accomplish this was Shaquille O’Neal, who did so back on November 19, 1999 in a victory over the Bulls. Bynum’s first 30+ point game of the month came on March 6th in Detroit, when he scored 30 points on 13-of-18 shooting.


WIRE-TO-WIRE
With their 97-92 victory over Minnesota on March 16th, the Lakers recorded their SECOND wire-to-wire victory of the 2011-12 season. Their other wire-to-wire victory (game in which they never trailed) also came against the Timberwolves (104-85 (2/29)). Last year, the Lakers led the NBA with 10 wire-to-wire victories, 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-to-wire 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 19 STRAIGHT AGAINST THE TIMBERWOLVES
Leading by nine at the half and by as many as 16 points in the third, the Lakers allowed Minnesota back to within as few as five but held on down the stretch to record their 19th consecutive victory over the Timberwolves 97-92 on March 16th at STAPLES Center. The streak, which is the longest active win streak by one NBA team against another, equals the second longest streak in Lakers franchise history when Los Angeles defeated the Dallas Mavericks 19 straight times from 1995-99. The longest regular season streak against a single opponent in Lakers franchise history is 24 consecutive victories over the Kings from 1983-88.


BRYANT WORKING OVERTIME
Kobe Bryant played 48:38 in the Lakers' overtime win at New Orleans on March 14th after playing 51:47 in their double-overtime victory at Memphis on March 13th. Bryant is the third NBA player in the last nine seasons to log more than 48 minutes in each of two games played on consecutive days. The only other players to do so over that span (2003-04 to date) were Charlotte teammates Jason Richardson and Gerald Wallace (Jan. 11-12, 2008). Bryant is the first Lakers player to do so since Wilt Chamberlain (Feb. 1-2, 1969).*


BACK-TO-BACK OVERTIMES
With their overtime victory 3/14 at New Orleans, which followed a double-overtime victory 3/13 at Memphis, the Lakers posted overtime road victories on consecutive days for just the 3rd time in franchise history. The previous occurrences were November 13-14, 1997 (at SA and HOU) and November 3-4, 2009 (at OKC and HOU).*


BRYANT APPROACHING JORDAN FOR 2ND ON NBA FRANCHISE CAREER POINTS LIST
During the 2009-10 season, with his 29th point on February 1, 2010 at Memphis, Kobe Bryant surpassed Jerry West as the Lakers all-time leading scorer. In the history of the NBA, only two players have scored more points with a single franchise than Bryant (29,143): Karl Malone (1st/36,374) and Michael Jordan (2nd/29,277). Last season, Bryant moved past Hakeem Olajuwon (26,511) 12/19/10 at Toronto and John Havlicek (26,395) 12/10/10 at Chicago into third on this list.


GETTING YOUNGER
In acquiring Ramon Sessions (25) and Christian Eyenga (22) from Cleveland for Luke Walton (32) and Jason Kapono (31) and Jordan Hill (24) from Houston for Derek Fisher (37) prior to the March 15 trade deadline, the Lakers average team age saw two years shaved off of it, going from 29 years, 149 days to 27 years, 133 days.


BYNUM ON A ROLL
With 37 points in the Lakers double overtime victory over the Memphis Grizzlies on March 13th, Andrew Bynum recorded his third career 30+ point game but second in his last five contests. Additionally, by going 15-of-18 from the field (83.3 percent), Bynum’s night marked just the fourth time in Lakers history that a player has scored at least 37 points on better than 83 percent shooting. The last Laker to accomplish this was Shaquille O’Neal, who did so back on November 19, 1999 in a victory over the Bulls.


*Statistical research assistance provided by the Elias Sports Bureau






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