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Shorthanded Lakers take down Nets in Brooklyn for sixth win in their last seven games

Feb 5, 2013, 11:33 PM EDT


The Lakers came into Brooklyn on Tuesday to face a Nets team that was 12-4 over its last 16 games, and did so without the services of Dwight Howard, who was out again due to pain in his right shoulder, and Metta World Peace, who was serving a league-mandated one-game suspension for his actions against Brandon knight of the Pistons on Sunday.

None of that mattered to L.A., as they powered through the adversity for a 92-83 win that was the Lakers’ sixth victory in the team’s last seven games.

Only Brook Lopez, who will be representing the Nets in the All-Star game as an injury replacement for Rajon Rondo, did any real and consistent damage for Brooklyn, finishing with a game-high 30 points to go along with 11 rebounds. But it’s worth noting it took him 25 shots to get there.

Meanwhile, Kobe Bryant led the Lakers with 21 points, eight rebounds, four assists, and four steals, but shot just 9-of-24 from the field while doing so.

The teams appeared evenly matched for the majority of the game, with Brooklyn struggling to create easy opportunities offensively. The officiating seemed to be in the Lakers’ favor, but more importantly, the ragtag lineup off the bench that L.A. threw out there while the starters got their rest produced unexpectedly, which helped the Lakers’ winning effort.

L.A. outscored Brooklyn 35-16 in the second quarter, thanks in large part to the job the bench lineup consisting of Steve Blake, Chris Duhon, Robert Sacre, and Jodie Meeks did to start the period, alongside starter Earl Clark. Somewhat surprisingly, the Nets bench couldn’t get anything going against these guys, and the Lakers regained control with the reserves, before the starters came back in to push the lead to double digits before settling for a nine-point lead at intermission.

The Nets went on a big 20-6 run that took up a large chunk of the third, after falling behind by 13 points to start the second half. The game was close throughout the fourth, before a layup from Bryant and a jumper from Clark with under two minutes remaining helped the Lakers pull away and seal the victory,

Pau Gasol left the game with 3:52 remaining in the fourth quarter with an injury to his right foot and did not return. The Lakers announced afterward that Gasol had a “plantar fascia strain,” and that he would have an MRI Wednesday in Boston to determine the extent of the injury.

Gasol said afterward that he heard a “pop,” and left the locker room on crutches.

As nice as it was to beat a Nets team that is eight games over .500 on their home floor, the season’s bigger picture is in serious jeopardy depending on the severity of Gasol’s injury. Already without Howard for an indefinite amount of time, the Lakers can’t afford to miss too many games with Gasol sidelined as well, especially given the hole they’ve dug for themselves in terms of simply trying to make the playoffs this season.

  1. cosanostra71 - Feb 6, 2013 at 12:24 AM

    They played pretty well, everyone stepped up and chipped in. Earl Clark had a great game, Steve Blake hit some big shots and Nash hit the free throws to ice the game. That Kobe guy played well too. I hope Pau isn’t hurt too bad, we need him and Dwight healthy if we want to make a run at the playoffs.

  2. Mr. Wright 212 - Feb 6, 2013 at 12:30 AM

    Wait, don’t the Nets make a living with half their wins coming against teams missing a couple of its key starters and role players? And they STILL couldn’t win?

  3. polarbearsquares - Feb 6, 2013 at 1:18 AM

    The officiating was in the Lakers favor. Wow. That’s hilarious.

    When is the last time an article was written on this site that said that in the opposite. Refs seem to be in other team’s favor vs. Lakers. Never. Matter of fact, can’t remember the last time I’ve seen that written here.

    But the Lakers won so … apparently the fix is in.


    • Foul Dwimmerlaik - Feb 6, 2013 at 8:06 AM

      Lakers’ favor?

      Let me see…

      Crucial plays:

      4th Quarter 50.3 seconds left, Lakers up, 88-83. An out of bounds play in favor for the Lakers was reversed by the referees saying it was Clark not Humphries who touched the ball last, giving the Nets another chance for a bucket.

      4th Quarter 38.1 seconds left, same score, Clark seemed to be fouled by Wallace after crossing the half line but refs ruled a jump ball instead.

      Apparently it is you who needs the fix.

      • Mr. Wright 212 - Feb 6, 2013 at 1:28 PM

        Plus Kobe was fouled on the dunk. The Nets had tons of home cooking last night and STILL lost, even with two Lakers starters out. And they think they’re in the Knicks’ league???

  4. dko83 - Feb 6, 2013 at 4:35 AM

    The Nets are really 28-20? They seem so much worse than that.

    • Mr. Wright 212 - Feb 6, 2013 at 1:30 PM

      They got hot as they tried to justify getting Ave run out of town, but you can’t expect to win with a fraud at PG, and a bunch of overpaid role players masquerading as “stars”.

      • dko83 - Feb 6, 2013 at 2:50 PM

        Took the words right out of my mouth.

  5. drubeatz - Feb 6, 2013 at 6:34 AM

    The Nets are a mentally weak team. Still got a ways to go at being contenders.

  6. omniusprime - Feb 6, 2013 at 8:49 AM

    Surprising that the Laker bench finally did something to win a game. About time the Lakers showed some pride by winning with key players out. Nice that Kobe didn’t have to do it all. Totally awesome drive and dunk by Kobe, just posterized two Piston players.

    Still the downside to the Laker victory is that worthless roach Dumbtoni gets another stay of execution. I’d rather see the Lakers lose every game until Dumbtoni gets fired. The Lakers have been winning despite Dumbtoni’s clueless coaching.

    Fire Dumbtoni!!! Trade Trash Nash!!! Trade Steve Flake!!! Get Well Soon Dwight and Pau!!!

  7. money2long - Feb 6, 2013 at 9:20 AM

    girls gone wild ?

    lol, gotta give credit to espn’s neil everett for saying earl’s gone wild. heard him say it last night.. not sure if he came up with it

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