Lakers Gameday | 05/04/10 | Jazz

GAMEDAY LINKS: Team Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Final
Box Score Utah Jazz 23 23 31 26 103
Play by Play Los Angeles Lakers 27 31 29 24 111


Lakers-Jazz Highlights


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Lakers grind out win over Jazz, lead series 2-0


LOS ANGELES(AP) Kobe Bryant scored 30 points, Pau Gasol added 22 points and 15 rebounds, and the Los Angeles Lakers methodically pounded the ball inside for a no-nonsense 111-103 victory over the Utah Jazz on Tuesday night, taking a 2-0 lead in their second-round playoff series.

Andrew Bynum had 17 points and 14 rebounds for the defending NBA champions, who exploited their height advantage while steadily maintaining a medium-sized lead throughout the second half of a disjointed, foul-choked game that lasted nearly three hours.

For the third straight postseason, the Lakers have a 2-0 series lead over the Jazz after consecutive wins at Staples Center, where Utah has lost 16 straight games - including eight in the playoffs.

Game 3 is Saturday night in Salt Lake City.

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

103 Combined number of points (50), rebounds (44) and blocks (9) for Laker bigs Andrew Bynum, Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom.

30 Point margin reached by Kobe Bryant for the third straight playoff game. He made 10-of-22 field goals and 10-of-11 free throws for 30 points in Game 2 after he scored 31 in Game 1 and 32 in Game 6 against Oklahoma City.

20 Turnovers by the Lakers, off which Utah scored 28 points. L.A. had just nine points off 10 Jazz turnovers, but scored easily in the offensive halfcourt and grabbed 18 offensive rebounds.

19 L.A.’s rebounding edge on the defensive glass. Gasol, Bynum and Odom had 31 defensive rebounds themselves, nine more than Utah’s 21 total.

7 First half assists for Bryant, who took advantage of early Jazz double teams by finding open teammates.

Mike Trudell,

Lakers-Jazz Quotes

Lakers’ Coach Phil Jackson on what the Lakers did well tonight:

“We had some great play tonight from our big guys – all of them played pretty well. Pau struggled a little bit with turnovers. Drew had a big game – we had good rebounding from him. We blocked some shots.”

On squeezing out the win despite the strong effort from the Jazz:
“I don’t know how collected we looked tonight but somehow we managed to win that game despite 20 turnovers. They were very aggressive attacking the ball tonight. I don’t think we were ready for their charge that they started the game with. I think they stayed aggressive for most of the game.”

On Andrew Bynum:
“I just felt he took a little more time, had a better base on his shots tonight then he did on Sunday. I think he felt a little more comfortable dealing with what he has to deal with and play.”

On the Lakers high quality defense:
“Some of it is the blocked shots – obviously, that’s tough. We had 13 blocked shots tonight. That makes a big difference in a ballgame. I think that we didn’t have to face Deron at his level of what he plays sometimes at.”

Lakers’ Kobe Bryant on whether the team uses being afraid of losing as motivation:
“The fear of losing comes in the preparation part of the game. I think that’s where you pay attention to the details. When the game starts you’re not afraid of losing at all.”

On jumpstarting the second unit:
“Trying to change up the rotation a little bit and trying to find something that the group can work with.”

On the Lakers’ effort in tonight’s game:
“We did good. We did good. It was a solid effort. But we let them get back in the game a little bit…but overall, we did well.”

On the Lakers’ play in the first five minutes of the game:
“We had to take the ball and score on the defense so we were in a position where we had to make a decision one way or another. And then we stepped up and shot the ball.”

Lakers’ Andrew Bynum on his comfort level in tonight’s game:
“I was pretty comfortable, especially in the first half. Very aggressive. I was getting deeper positions so I didn’t have to take so many dribbles.”

On taking advantage of his length:
“For the most part, if we get our work done early and keep moving to the paint and get a low position, we should get the ball.”

Lakers’ Pau Gasol on Andrew Bynum playing through his injury:
“I was pleased.  We are happy that Andrew has been playing the way he has been playing right now.  He is just really productive and really aggressive. He is being everything that we need.  It is a matter of knowing how to deal with your injuries and understanding what level of pain and discomfort you can suffer.  He is definitely playing well and we want him to keep it up and stay healthy.”

On his performance tonight:
“I didn’t start out the way I would have liked to.  I had too many turnovers and I should have taken care of the ball better.  I then tried to be active and productive and played close to the rim.  I thought I did pretty well on utilizing my size.  I made my free throws and that is always a positive.”

On the amount of turnovers tonight:
“They [Jazz] were a little more aggressive to the ball tonight and we didn’t take care of it as well as we sometimes do.  We have to be careful of the passes and aware of the double teams.  Keep the ball high and protect it.  We have to make sure we protect the ball and don’t show it, make the right pass and hit the open guy.”

Lakers’ Lamar Odom on the play of the bench tonight:
“I think we played a lot better as a unit. I think we can still get better. Some might think that our second and third effort was there tonight was the most part.”

On tonight’s game:
“The way that forwards play, Millsap and Boozer, they kind of hide behind the defense a lot. I try to position myself to stop penetration and get back the basketball. Usually I would get a rebound. What Millsap did a good job of, playing behind us a lot... This team loves running their offense from the free-throw line in. So there’s going to be opportunities to beat them.”

On his performance tonight:
“I’m getting better and better as the play-offs kind of go on. There’s always room for improvement. Just trying to do the small things. Block shot here, a put-back here, offensive rebound here, and just try to add up. Try to play an all-around game.”

On the intensity and focus of the team:
“We’re 2-0. We have room for improvement. We know what’s it like to play on the road. To play in Utah, it will be tough... I think our intensity and our focus is there, for the most part.”

Utah Jazz Coach Jerry Sloan on tonight’s game:
“I was proud of the fact that our guys fought back into the ball game.  I thought we had a chance and we did have a chance but they [Lakers] blocked a couple of shots when we came down the stretch and then Kobe made that three.  We then dragged the ball out of bounds at seven seconds on the clock.  That pretty much did us in.”

On the Lakers rebounding:
“There rebounding tonight was just something we could not handle.  We out rebounded them on the offense, but could not keep up with them on the defense.”

On loosing tonight’s game:
“That is part of basketball and I do not like to use the word disheartening.  I thought our guys played extremely hard to try and stay in the ball game.  When we got down a little bit, I thought our guys seemed to have their heads between their legs, but I thought we fought through that and tried to give ourselves a chance to get back into the game.  We got anxious in our offense a little bit when we tried to take over the game so they [Lakers] blocked a couple of shots in that stretch.”

On playing the Lakers bigs:
“That is life. If you are going to let that bother you, you have to continue to compete and I thought as long as we compete we will do ok.”

Utah Jazz Deron Williams on this game compared to game one:
“Similar. We had a better start, but we had a bad stretch. [Our] second group got us back into it and then we just couldn’t close out the ball game.”

On what the Lakers were doing defensively:
“They were doing similar to what Denver did; they were just a little bit better at it, making other people beat them. Every time I turned to get in the lane there were two to three guys in there and that length bothers me a lot more than Denver’s did.”

On Paul Millsap and CJ Miles’ performances tonight:
“They played great. Paul played great, offensively and defensively. He gets beat up and doesn’t get calls but, you know, he stays with it. CJ came in and gave us a lot of energy defensively. I thought he defended Kobe well in stretches. We’ve just got to hit some shots.”

Utah Jazz Carlos Boozer on his team’s game plan going forward:
“We’re just going to be more aggressive, try to do a better job of digging the ball out when they get it. The closer they get to the basket, the more efficient they are. They further we can keep them out, push them out a little bit, be more physical, try to dig the ball out with different guys and go from there.”

On what the Jazz are doing well:
“I think we’re playing hard. I think we’re playing aggressive. I think we’re doing a decent job on defense. I think we could do a better job defensively. But we’ve had chances to win both the games here in L.A. Obviously in the first game we were up coming down the stretch. This game, we were close. We were right there.”

On the rest of the series:
“I felt like we can play better, which is encouraging. We get a chance to go home and if we can win the first game, we have a chance to win the second game and tie it up and come back here. That’s our main focus is to try to get Game 3 in Salt Lake City and go from there.”

Utah Jazz CJ Miles on what he changed offensively:
“They were running at me so much that I just tried to attack. Just be on attack any time I could, try to get to the rim or try to make a play for someone else and I was able to get to the basket and the free throw line a lot in the second half.”

On the mindset of the Jazz right now:
“I just try to stay positive… And there was a couple of times where you’d see us coming to the huddle in timeouts like the game was already over and we were only down ten… We just have to stay with it the whole game and just try to keep playing.”

Utah Jazz Wesley Matthews on the similarities and differences of the first two games:
“Similar, we were right back in it, we were fighting. Just a couple of possessions we got away from what did and executed. Different, we jumped out to the lead like we’re supposed to. We were hungry, we were fighting, we were sharing the ball and getting stops. We just got away from it.”

On what the Jazz need to go moving forward:
“We need to play. We need to be tough. A whole 48 minutes, it’s a long game. When we’re on our run, we’ve got to keep our runs going. When they start a run, we’ve got to stop it early. We’ve had our backs up against the wall more so than them.”

Assistant coach Frank Hamblen joined us on LakersTV to preview Game 2 of L.A.’s Second Round series against Utah, focusing on ever-important pick-and-roll defense, what Kobe Bryant did to go 12-of-19 Game 1, Derek Fisher’s improved shooting, containing Deron Williams and more.

Lakers-Jazz Preview

By GREG BEACHAM, AP Sports Writer

LOS ANGELES (AP)—Utah coach Jerry Sloan has watched Kobe Bryant’s playoff evolution from its inauspicious beginnings.

The Los Angeles Lakers’ star guard wouldn’t have become a peerless postseason finisher without his performance at the erstwhile Delta Center in 1997, when Bryant spectacularly failed to finish off the Jazz.

The 18-year-old rookie’s four infamous airballs late in the final game of that second-round playoff series in Salt Lake City only made Bryant tougher and more determined. Thirteen years later, the calculating veteran makes sure no lead over the Lakers is safe—certainly not the tenuous four-point lead Bryant erased Sunday with a few flicks of his wrist in Game 1 of the clubs’ latest playoff clash.

“You’re not going to stop Kobe Bryant at this point,” Sloan said Monday before practice at the Los Angeles Clippers’ Playa Vista training complex. “You can double him and try to make their big guys make a shot, but you just have to play a little harder and hope he’ll miss a few. … He’s learned a lot of tricks over the years, a lot of ways to score in a close game. It’s a tougher task to defend him than almost anybody.”

Bryant led Los Angeles to a 104-99 win with deceptive ease in the opener, scoring 11 points in the final four minutes. Game 2 is Tuesday night at Staples Center.

Back in 1997, the teenage Bryant—whose shaved head gave him more than a passing resemblance to slain rapper Tupac Shakur—first airballed a mid-range jumper that could have won Game 5 in regulation. Bryant then missed the rim on a 3-point attempt early in overtime before leaving another long jumper far short in the final minute.

He finished by with an airball on a potential tying 3-pointer, which bounced meekly out of bounds in the waning seconds to the delight of a jeering crowd. Coach Del Harris defiantly defended his decision to entrust the Lakers’ season to Bryant, saying the teenager already was his team’s top late-game performer.

Bryant’s finishing skills are well honed now, with his artistic knack for creating outside shots eluding nearly any defender’s best efforts. He won a half-dozen games for the Lakers this season on last-second baskets, and he didn’t even wait until the final seconds of Game 1 to finish off Utah.

After the Lakers’ practice in El Segundo on Monday, Bryant deflected praise for his late-game poise onto Los Angeles’ defense, which held the Jazz to one field goal in the final 4:10. Though Bryant must be responsible for most of the Lakers’ clutch scoring this season, he sees improvements in other areas for the defending champions.

“It’s a different team,” Bryant said. “We were much better offensively last year for whatever reason, but we’ve better defensively this year.”

Utah’s efforts to guard Bryant could get a boost if Andrei Kirilenko returns Tuesday from a strained left calf that has prevented him from playing a full game in nearly two months. The Russian forward’s wiry frame gives him a chance to stop Bryant, or at least force him to be more creative.

Kirilenko went through a full practice with the Jazz on Monday, and he estimated his chances of playing in Game 2 at “50-50.”

“He adds a lot of energy to their team,” Bryant said of Kirilenko. “He’s a very good passer and an emotional defender.”

Kirilenko also could give a boost to Utah’s low-post defense, which struggled against Lakers 7-footersPau Gasol and Andrew Bynum, who confirmed he’s putting off arthroscopic surgery on the small tear in the meniscus of his right knee until after the postseason.

Without Kirilenko and center Mehmet Okur, who’s out for the postseason, the Jazz didn’t have an inside presence to match the Lakers. Kyrylo Fesenko, the Ukrainian big man filling in for Okur, had just two points in 13 minutes while playing self-acknowledged inadequate defense.

“In the first half, I was kind of thinking, ‘Wow, I’m playing here against the Lakers,”’ Fesenko said. “I have a long way to go. I’m not happy with my game. I need to play tougher. I got a little soft in the last couple of games.”

While the Jazz changed their approach, the Lakers stuck to their usual between-games routine, honed by two straight runs to the NBA finals.

Los Angeles focused on getting a better effort out of its reserves, who gave away a lead early in the fourth quarter. Lamar Odom was particularly vocal about needing better communication among the Lakers’ bench players on defense.

“I just know we can play a lot better together, just using each other and playing off each other,” Odom said.

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-Jazz Scouting Report

The more things change the more they stay the same. As we go through this series the focus on our ability to defend the screen and rolls with be crucial. This fact hasn’t changed in the 20+ years the Jazz have played under Coach Jerry Sloan. The names have changed from Stockton and Malone to Williams and Boozer but the danger and effectiveness remains high. We know they will run a high volume of screen and rolls from various angles and even with other players involved. We must improve our team defensive approach to this attack. There were too many times in Game 1 where the two players directly involved in the primary thrust of the screen and roll did their jobs but the other three support players didn’t do theirs. Many times these problems were due to the weakside defenders simply not having their bodies in the right position from which they could offer the proper help. As we launch into our screen and roll defense we essentially switch from a man defense to a zone in many ways. One of the vulnerabilities of a zone defense is rebounding and we were hurt on a few occasions where the Jazz crashed their offensive boards and scored easy putbacks. Whether in transition situations (Power C), in their early offense flow game (4 or 5 Quick), or in the half court sets (4X or 5 X) we know that if we don’t improve our screen and roll coverage it could be a long series.

Regster to Lakers Courtside Connection to read more.

Lakers-Jazz Injury Report

Ron Artest (sprained left thumb) will play.
Shannon Brown (sprained right thumb) will play.
Kobe Bryant (arthritis, right index finger) will play.
Andrew Bynum (left Achilles strain / slight tear, lateral meniscus, right knee) is day-to-day.
DJ Mbenga (retinal surgery, left eye) is probable.
Sasha Vujacic (severe sprain, left ankle) is out.
Luke Walton (pinched nerve, back) is probable.

Andrei Kirilenko (strained left calf muscle) is doubtful.
Mehmet Okur
(ruptured left Achilles’) is out.
Deron Williams
(bruised left elbow) is game time decision.

Lakers-Jazz Game Notes

The Lakers won their season series with the Jazz 3-1 and have now taken each of the last four season series from Utah: 2006-07 (2-1), 2007-08 (3-1), 2008-09 (2-1), 2009- 10 (3-1). The Jazz and Lakers have met 150 times in the regular season (96-54) and 131 times since the Jazz moved to Utah (83-49). In the postseason, the Lakers and Jazz have met five times (1988, 1997, 1998, 2008, 2009) with the Lakers advancing on three occasions: 1988 Western Conference Semifinals (4-3), 2008 Western Conference Semifinals (4-2) and 2009 Western Conference First Round 4-1. The Lakers are 7-3 in their last 10 regular season games with the Jazz. The Lakers are 18- 3 all-time against the Jazz at STAPLES Center during the regular season and have won their last nine straight (15 in a row including the playoffs). In Utah, the Lakers have gone 4-6 in their last 10 regular season games at EnergySolutions Arena. Under head coach Phil Jackson, the Lakers are 26-12 against Utah in the regular season. In their first meeting of the season 12/9/09 at STAPLES Center, the Lakers held the Jazz to the third fewest fourth quarter points (6) in the NBA’s shot clock era. In 2006, the Lakers scored a series record 132 points in a 132-102 victory 11/30/06 at STAPLES Center, improving upon the old mark of 131 points achieved at Utah 12/4/86. In that game, Kobe Bryant established a new series-high with 52 points against the Jazz, surpassing his own record of 43 points (3/22/05) while also bettering Adrian Dantley’s Jazz mark of 50 established in November of 1979. Bryant’s 30-point 3rd quarter tied his own franchise record and is tied for the 4th-highest scoring quarter in NBA history. In 46 games against the Jazz (38 starts), Bryant is averaging 26.1 points. Additionally, Lakers guard Derek Fisher played the 2006-07 season for Utah, appearing in all 82 games, starting 61 and averaging 10.1 points and 3.3 assists in 27.9 minutes.

The Lakers and Jazz have met five times in the postseason (1988, 1997, 1998, 2008, 2009) with Los Angeles advancing on three occasions (1988 Western Conference Semifinals 4-3, 2008 Western Conference Semifinals 4-2, 2009 Western Conference First Round 4-1). Utah eliminated Los Angeles from the playoffs in two consecutive postseasons: 1997 Western Conference Semifinals (1-4) and 1998 Western Conference Finals (0-4). In all five postseason meetings between the Jazz and Lakers, the team with home court advantage has won the series. Overall, the Lakers are now 14-14 against the Jazz in postseason games, going 11-4 at home but just 3-10 in Utah. Additionally, this will be the fifth series meeting Lakers head coach Phil Jackson and Utah head coach Jerry Sloan in the postseason. Jackson has won the previous four encounters, defeating the Jazz in both the 1997 and 1998 NBA Finals (4-2, 4-2) while with the Chicago Bulls and knocking off Utah in both the 2008 Western Conference Semifinals (4-2) and 2009 Western Conference First Round (4-1) while with the Lakers. Overall, Jackson (307; 214-93) and Sloan (199; 98-101) rank first and third respectively all-time in NBA playoff games coached.


The Lakers are 69-29 in best-of-seven series (any round) all-time. (63-28 Los Angeles, 6-1 Minneapolis)

The Lakers are now 65-34 in Game 1 of best-of-seven series (any round) all-time. (61-31 Los Angeles, 4-3 Minneapolis)

When winning Game 1 of a best-of-seven series (any round), the Lakers are 57-7. (53-7 Los Angeles, 4-0 Minneapolis)

The Lakers are 57-41 in Game 2 of best-of-seven series (any round) all-time. (54-37 Los Angles, 3-4 Minneapolis)

When winning both Games 1 and 2 of a best-of-seven series (any round), the Lakers are 40-1 all-time. (39-1 Los Angeles, 1-0 Minneapolis)

When splitting Games 1 and 2 of a best-of-seven series (any round), the Lakers are 27-12 all-time. (22-12 Los Angeles, 5-0 Minneapolis)

When Phil Jackson wins Game 1 of any playoff series, best-of-five or best-of-seven, his teams are 45-0, having gone 24-0 with Chicago and 21-0 with the Lakers. Also, when holding a series lead of any kind, Phil Jackson, currently in his 19th postseason as a head coach, is 52-1 all-time.

With the Lakers victory over Utah in Game 1 of the Western Conference Semifinals on May 2, Phil Jackson won for the 103rd time with the Lakers in the postseason, passing Pat Riley (102) for most playoff victories in Lakers franchise history. Overall, Jackson owns a 214-93 postseason record, with his 214 victories being the most of any NBA coach in playoff history. Additionally, Jackson’s 307 career playoff games are also the most of any coach in playoff history, while his .697 postseason win percentage is tops among all coaches as well. With the Lakers 2009 NBA Championship, Jackson (10 as head coach, 2 as player) surpassed legendary Celtics coach Red Auerbach for most championships won by a head coach while also passing fellow Hall-of-Famer Bill Russell (11) for most championships won by a player/coach. Should the Lakers reach the NBA Finals this season, it will be the 13th time he has taken a team to the final round, tying him with NHL coaching legend Scotty Bowman for most trips to the finals in a major pro sport played in the U.S.


Since moving to STAPLES Center prior to the 1999-2000 season, the Lakers have won 84% of their postseason home games (67-13). The Lakers have topped the century mark in over half of their postseason home games at STAPLES Center (46-of-80) while the opposition has been held under 100 points in all but 21 of those games. In their last 43 home playoff games, the Lakers are 37-6.

Kobe Bryant scored seven straight fourth-quarter points to turn a four-point deficit into a three-point lead that the Lakers wouldn't relinquish in their series-opening victory over the Jazz. It was the second time in his career that Bryant scored at least seven straight points during the fourth quarter of a playoff game. He scored eight in a row to extend an already sizeable lead over the Spurs in Game 3 of the 2003 Conference Semifinals.*

With 32 points in the Lakers 95-94 series clinching victory at Oklahoma City on April 30, Kobe Bryant improved his scoring average for the First Round to 23.5 points per game. In doing so, Bryant recorded his 25th consecutive playoff series averaging 20+ points per game, the longest such streak in Lakers history. Bryant last failed to average 20 points in a playoff series in the 200 Finals vs. Indiana (15.6 ppg).*

With the Lakers defeating the Thunder in the First Round of the 2010 NBA Playoffs, Derek Fisher and Kobe Bryant added another series victory to their playoff resume. Among all active players, only Shaquille O’Neal (32) has won more postseason series than Fisher (30) and Bryant (28).*


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