NBA Game Summary - LA Clippers at LA Lakers
(Wednesday, November 17th)
Final Score: LA Lakers 103, LA Clippers 89
Los Angeles, CA (Sports Network) - Kobe Bryant had a great all-around game with 23 points, 11 assists and five steals to lead the Los Angeles Lakers to a 103-89 victory over the visiting Clippers at the Staples Center.
Chucky Atkins added 17 points and dished out seven assists for the Lakers, who have defeated their in-city rivals 14 of the last 15 times as the home team. Chris Mihm chipped in 15 points while Caron Butler had 14 in the win.
Corey Maggette scored a game-high 24 points for the Clippers, who were off to their best start in nine years at 5-3 coming into the game. Bobby Simmons contributed 23 points with eight rebounds while Elton Brand contributed 14 points and 11 boards in the setback.
After briefly taking their first lead of the third quarter, the Clippers were outscored 7-2 over the final three minutes of the period to trail 75-71.
The Lakers' momentum continued in the fourth, as the difference grew to 14 behind a 15-5 run. Bryant, who has been battling a case of plantar fasciitis, elevated high for a one-handed alley-oop from Atkins to cap the rally with 6:50 to play.
"We've got a good [training] staff here," Bryant said. "They got me ready for tonight. I hurt a little bit right now, the key is to keep it loose."
"That's something I've been dreaming about all summer," Atkins said of his highlight-reel dish to Bryant.
Atkins buried a trey a minute later, giving the Lakers their biggest lead of the night at 95-78.
Maggette tried to get the Clippers back into it with seven points in a row over the next minute. He hit consecutive threes and was fouled by Bryant on the second for a four-point play, trimming the deficit to 95-85.
But Bryant answered with the next four points, including a steal and breakaway jam that re-established the 14-point margin with 3 1/2 minutes remaining, and it was smooth sailing from there.
"It was a really big win for us," said Lakers head coach Rudy Tomjanovich. "I think the Clippers are a quality team. "We just needed a great effort today."
Butler and Mihm had 12 points apiece in the first half while Bryant had eight assists to help the Lakers out to a 53-46 advantage at intermission.
Chris Wilcox, who registered team highs with 11 points and eight rebounds in the opening 24 minutes, followed his own miss to pull the Clippers within four with 21 seconds left before halftime.
Butler then connected from long range with only two ticks left. Atkins then intercepted Wilcox's inbound, but his desperation three rimmed out.
Atkins also saw his 75-foot heave go off the rim at the third-quarter buzzer.
Bryant suffered a minor cut to his lip in the fourth quarter...The Clippers went to the charity stripe just 11 times and made nine attempts while the Lakers converted 20-of-24 shots from the line...Wilcox finished with 14 points and nine boards...Simmons had 12 points in the third quarter...The Clippers scored 21 second-chance points to the Lakers' one...The Lakers have defeated the Clippers in 27 of the last 30 meetings overall...Forward Slava Medvedenko, who hasn't played this season because of a bruised right heel, dressed for the first time, but did not play...Brand notched his 1000th career assist.
11/18 01:29:02 ET