Here is a by-the-numbers look at the Lakers’ 98-95 comeback victory over the Sacramento Kings.
Turnovers for the Lakers, which were a new season-low. The Kings converted those giveaways into just four points, while coughing up 16 turnovers of their own. Sacramento’s mishaps not only led to 21 Laker points off turnovers, but they also contributed to L.A. taking 96 shots — 26 more than the Kings.
“Offensively, lack of execution, inability to make shots, make free throws and, I thought, at times just not getting organized — that’s where I told our guys it just happened too many times,” said Sacramento head coach Michael Malone. “We have to run offense late in games, and when we do that, we usually get high-percentage looks. Tonight was just too much random dribbling around, trying to make it up as we went.”
Shots missed by Kobe Bryant in the first half, in which he went just 4-for-13. However, he turned it around after the break, scoring 21 points on 7-for-14 shooting over the final two quarters. The Lakers were able to free Bryant for open looks, as he took 12 uncontested field goals and made seven. His performance makes him the league’s sole scoring leader (25.5 points per game) and puts him 31 points away from passing Michael Jordan for third place on the NBA’s all-time scoring list.
“I’m hurting. At halftime, I just laid down and just tried to mentally put myself in a place where I just black out and come out and play,” Bryant said. “The appreciation for myself and for moving in the third quarter is about the body. It’s all in the sweats that I have. That’s how the journey is.”
Bryant's Second-Half Shot Chart
Sacramento’s lead with 8:10 left in the third quarter. In less than a minute, the Kings scored eight unanswered points to push their lead to a game-high dozen. However, the Lakers fought back to tie twice in the third, though they could not manage to take the lead until there were only 99 seconds left in the game.
Combined points from power forwards Ed Davis and Carlos Boozer. Davis was perfect on all five of his attempts, finishing with 11 points and bumping his field goal percentage up to 78.6 percent (11-for-14) in three games as a starter. Meanwhile, Boozer scored 15 points (6-for-13) and finished one rebound shy of his third double-double of the season.
Percentage shot by the Kings in the fourth quarter. Sacramento, which had shot 50.9 percent across the first three periods, went just 5-for-17 in the final frame. Darren Collison hit three shots, but the rest of the team went just 2-for-13 with the game on the line. The Lakers shot even worse in the third quarter (6-for-22; 27.3 percent), but they tallied 12 points off 3-pointers and free throws, while the Kings managed just four.