Postgame Report: Lakers 121, Pacers 119 090109
Veteran forward had a career-high six 3-pointers made and produced a season-high 24 points on 9-of-14 shooting, adding six rebounds, three assists and a blocked shot.
The Pacers played their 12th game of the season decided by three points or less. They're 5-7 in those games.
After a day off Saturday, the Pacers travel to Golden State to face Stephen Jackson and the Warriors Sunday (9 p.m., Fox Sports Indiana, 1070 The Fan).
Jan. 9, 2009 at Los Angeles
Lakers 121, Pacers 119
PACERS COACH JIM O'BRIEN
“Kobe is tall; he’s about three or four inches bigger. He defended it well but Kobe makes big shots, he’s a great player. Kobe is Kobe. He makes big shots when they need him to.”
(on Granger’s fouling out) “He had no choice. He’s our best defensive player. He’s our length and at the end of the game he’s going to play the other team’s best player, I don’t care how many fouls he gets.”
(on his team’s high scoring game) “We run a passing game, they run a passing game. We run a lot of backwards cuts and it’s hard to guard us when we move. We have a lot of three point weapons. We hurt them on back cuts all first half. When our guys are moving, we’re tough to guard.”
(on the final play of the game) “We went for a three and they shut it down. We did not want to go into overtime without Granger being on the court. Travis was one of the options but he got lost in the shuffle. He was supposed to get out but he’s a small guy and there are a lot of bodies in there. He was looking for all the three point options and tried to get it off but it was just too late. To their credit they shut it down and he didn’t get the shot.”
PACERS GUARD JARRETT JACK
(on the very last play that was executed) “It was a drawn out play. Obviously we didn’t get to play that part of the play where we wanted to get a shot at the basket and time just expired.”
(on what to improve as a team) “It’s definitely defense, I don’t know what they shot on the field. They definitely shot a high percentage and if you’re playing against a team like this, you can’t allow them to score this many points.”
PACERS FORWARD DANNY GRANGER
(on the final minutes of the 4th quarter) “We couldn’t stop Kobe. He would come down if he would shoot it and he was making shots, getting to the free throw line and that’s basically the tale of the game.”
(on playing against Los Angeles) “We beat them in Indiana with a last second shot and they beat us here with a shot at the end of the game. Luckily, we don’t see them for the rest of the year.”
PACERS FORWARD MIKE DUNLEAVY
“Well, Kobe made a tough shot like he has done so many times before. We still had three seconds to get something off and we were looking for a 3-pointer but obviously it didn’t pan out.”
(on what to improve as a team) “There’s a lot, we don’t want to give up as many points as we did today. We feel like we can score with anybody in the league so offense isn’t really our issue. It’s holding teams down defensively; we gave up 41 points in the 1st quarter tonight and that’s too much so we have to keep improving on defense and from there we have a pretty good chance to be a good basketball team.”
LAKERS COACH PHIL JACKSON
(on whether the Lakers catered to the Pacers’ style of ball) “Perhaps. I thought the pace was perhaps a little bit quicker than we want to play. It was close to our pace. They really dictated some of the tempo; I think it was in the second quarter I felt like they did.”
(on the Lakers’ performance) “We were never quite comfortable in that game. You know, even with a 10-12 point lead. Knowing what happened the last game against them and they closed the gap again today.”
(on giving up so many points to the Pacers in consecutive games) "Well, there’s a number of things. Obviously, they are very efficient. But without getting too tactical, they keep us away from the strengths of our defensive group. Getting the high post ball and then running screen-rolls – they’re efficient at that.”
(on Sasha Vujacic’s defense) “Well, I told him at the end of the game that Dunleavy is either going to make a cut over the top and if he can’t get there, he’s going to reverse you. And he played both of them pretty well.”
(on Kobe Bryant’s performance) “He went dry there in the fourth quarter. I thought that he had some really good looks and wasn’t hitting them but didn’t get frustrated. He stayed with it and made some plays for us down the stretch.
(on injuries piling up for the team) “We’re pressed. Josh played fine tonight. He had a 10 point game in 18 minutes. He played a nice role for us tonight. I just think we’re playing a little bit heavy minutes with guys that I don’t want to get into that many minutes with. Pau (played a lot of minutes) and ‘Drew [Bynum] played 30 minutes tonight but played 35 on Wednesday night.
LAKERS GUARD KOBE BRYANT
(on if he had doubts when the ball left his hands on the final shot) “No, it felt good. It felt good but you know I had shots in the past like the one in Miami that I felt good, but it came in and out so I made sure that one stayed down.”
(on the defensive strategy of the game) “You try and make them take low percentage shots; hands in the face, things like that. At the start of the game we could touch there shots and they made them anyways and in the third quarter they didn’t. In the fourth they did. So you try to cool them off and then when they cool off you take advantage of them.”
LAKERS FORWARD JOSH POWELL
(on what he brought to the game tonight) “Just energy. Just scrambling, being in the right spots at the right time and trying to do the right things at both ends of the court. Just a player. I think defensively, doing the right things and being in the right spots, hustling, getting rebounds and doing those types of things on offense.”
(on making the most of his minutes on the court) “I think so. No matter what the stat sheet says I am definitely giving two-hundred percent out there and that is all that I can do. It is unfortunate that we have the injuries that we have, but we have a deep team and a lot of the guys have to step up.”
LAKERS FORWARD PAU GASOL
“They are tough to match up against. They have a lot of scorers, they play that up-tempo game, and they shoot the ball well from the outside. They are a tough team. It is a force to match up and for a lot of guys to match up.”
(on how he felt about the outcome of the game tonight) “Well it is one that we had to fight for in order to get the win at the end of the game, and it was a tough one to get. We had to earn it and we had to finish strong and get a last stop; at the end they got a little stuck with the ball. It was a good win, now we have to move on.”