Derek Fisher is one of the players featured in Monday's gallery.
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Anatomy of an Anomaly
How did the Lakers overcome Shaquille O'Neal's seven-point outing to beat Houston 98-84 Monday and take a two-game lead in their series? Kobe Bryant's 36 points helped, including his 16-for-17 shooting from the foul line. Speaking of free throws, L.A. missed just four of them, compared to 11 by the Rockets. The Lakers also dished 27 assists and committed just nine turnovers, and reserve guards Derek Fisher and Kareem Rush combined for 21 points on 8-for-12 shooting, including 4-for-5 from 3-point range.
San Antonio used a one-two punch to top Memphis 87-70 in Game 2 of their series. The Grizzlies trimmed the Spurs' lead to one point with 4:56 left in the third, but San Antonio's Robert Horry scored three baskets to spark a 13-5 quarter-ending spurt. Then, after Pau Gasol opened the final period with a free throw, the Spurs took off on a 14-0 run that put the game away. Tony Parker finished with 27 points and seven assists, and Tim Duncan had 23 points and 12 boards.
Steve Francis, Hou. VGM value: 16.8 Monday: Powered by his triple-double, the Rockets guard turned in the night's most efficient performance, a plus-34 against the Lakers. Francis posted 18 points (6-11 FG), 12 assists, 10 boards.
VIRTUAL GM BEST BUY
Robert Horry, S.A. VGM value: 7.4 Monday: The five-time NBA champion scored 14 points on 6-for-9 shooting and grabbed 10 boards vs. the Grizzlies.
TIME TO TUNE IN
Tuesday on TNT
Knicks at Nets, 8 p.m. ET
Mavericks at Kings, 10:30 ET Tuesday on NBA TV
Celtics at Pacers, 8:30 p.m. ET Artest suspended one game
SPEAK IT, MAN
"I think Rob's just playing us. I think he just hangs out all season, does what he can, and then in playoff time he really wants to play."
-- San Antonio's Tim Duncan, on Robert Horry's postseason heroics.