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NBA Game Summary - Utah at LA Lakers

(Tuesday, December 27th)

Final Score: LA Lakers 96, Utah 71

Los Angeles, CA (Sports Network) - Playing their third game in as many nights, the Lakers had a built-in excuse to come out sluggish against the fresh Jazz.

But Los Angeles came out hitting on all cylinders to avoid its first 0-3 start since 1978-79 by rolling past Utah, 96-71, as Mike Brown earned his first win on the Lakers bench.

Kobe Bryant netted 26 points with a bad wrist, while Pau Gasol added 22 points and nine rebounds for the Lakers, who lost to the Bulls and Kings in their furious start to the regular season.

"I'm glad the back-to-back-to-back is over," Bryant said after the win.

The Jazz were playing their first game and rusty, hitting just 32 percent from the field. Paul Millsap led the way with 18 points and eight boards.

"Our guys did a nice job defensively," Brown said. "To hold a team to 71 points, you're doing something right. It was a fun game to watch. It's exciting to get a win, especially after two losses."

Utah began the season with a head coach not named Jerry Sloan for the first time since the 1988-89 campaign.

Tyrone Corbin is now at the helm and saw his club in the hole, 18-17, after 12 minutes before a bench-infused 13-0 run in the second quarter gave LA some more breathing room.

Metta World Peace capped the stretch with a dunk for a 35-22 lead, and Gasol's putback just before the halftime buzzer resulted in a 41-31 contest.

Bryant hit a turnaround jumper on the first possession of the third quarter, sparking a 10-2 run for an 18-point cushion.

The Lakers shot 15-of-18 from the foul line in the frame, building a 71-46 advantage that was never challenged in the final 12 minutes.

"We missed a lot of shots," Corbin said. "We had good execution, we just missed shots."

Game Notes

The Jazz are 2-13 when opening the season as the visitor...World Peace scored 14 points off the Lakers bench...Utah's Al Jefferson was held to four points on 2-of-16 shooting...The Lakers shot 20 more free throws and made 18 more than Utah.

12/28 01:59:03 ET

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