Game Report: Kings defeat Lakers 113 – 97
Gasol scored eight points on 3-10 shooting, and Howard added seven points on 2-4 shooting, despite each playing more than 37 minutes. Neither player seemed to have much energy, perhaps because they had played big minutes the night before.
The Lakers were outscored 50 – 22 in the paint, and so Gasol and Howard weren’t providing much interior defense either. The Lakers were outrebounded 41-33.
Bryant did his best to keep his team in the game, scoring 38 points by shooting 11-20 from the field and 11-13 from the line. Kobe, the league leader in plus-minus (at least coming into the game), led his team at +1 tonight, but it’s hard to win when +1 leads the team.
The Lakers fell behind by 11 late in the third, but managed to pull within one early in the fourth, on the strength of Kobe’s relentlessness and a welcome burst from Jodie Meeks, who scored 15 points in 15 minutes (but who was also a -15 on the night).
But the defense wasn’t there tonight, especially in the fourth quarter when the Kings scored 40 points, which lends credence to the theory that fatigue played a role.
The Kings won going away.
There are some nights when Steve Nash is not missed at all, but tonight was one of those nights when he likely would have made a huge difference.
Lakers Player of the Game
It wasn’t close tonight – Kobe Bryant was the player of the game. When it became clear Dwight and Pau had nothing in the tank, he went to work and scored 38 points on 11-20 shooting.
Tonight’s Top Two Tweets in my Twitter Feed
“Steve Nash really can’t get back fast enough. This is not what D’Antoni’s offense is supposed to look like.” Ramona Shelburne (@RamonaShelburne), mid-game tweet
“Kobe had his arms raised when Meeks put up that miss. The new guy doesn’t know the rules. AK” – Kamenetzy Brothers (@ESPNLandOLakers), mid-game tweet
Friday, November 23 at the Memphis Grizzlies, 6:00 p.m. PST