NBA Game Summary - Indiana at LA Lakers
(Sunday, March 6th)
Final Score: LA Lakers 103, Indiana 94
Los Angeles, CA (Sports Network) - Kobe Bryant scored a game-high 37 points as the Los Angeles Lakers won their second straight game with a 103-94 decision over the road-weary Indiana Pacers at the Staples Center.
Bryant went 12-of-24 from the floor, 13-of-13 from the free throw line and pulled down 10 rebounds for the Lakers, who continued to dominate the Pacers. LA has won eight of 10 in this series.
Chucky Atkins added 16 points, while Chris Mihm finished with 14 points and 10 rebounds. Also reaching double figures for the Lakers were Lamar Odom with 13 and Caron Butler with 10.
"I'm happy we won - I'm not happy (about) how we played and how we won," said Laker coach Frank Hamblen. "I thought we were very sluggish out there tonight. Our execution at times wasn't good, but that's still a work in progress.
"We can't defer to Kobe all the time, we have to get other guys involved," the coach added.
Leading Indiana, which was playing the third of four straight on the road, was Stephen Jackson with 29 points on 11-of-25 shooting.
Fred Jones had 18 points, James Jones contributed 12 and Reggie Miller netted 11 for the Pacers, who fell to 1-2 on their current swing with the final game at Utah scheduled for Tuesday.
Indiana played its second straight game without All-Star and leading scorer Jermaine O'Neal, who was placed on the injured list Friday with a shoulder injury.
Already leading 23-19 after the first quarter, the Lakers outscored Indiana 27-18 in the second frame to take a 50-37 advantage into intermission.
LA connected on 50 percent of its field goal attempts, while limiting the Pacers to just 39 percent, including a dismal 2-of-12 from three-point distance in the half.
The third quarter belonged to Bryant, who scored 15 in the frame, including the Lakers' last 11 points in the period, which ended with LA ahead, 77-65.
The Lakers led by double figures for a majority of the final period before Indiana made it interesting in the end by pulling to within five points, 95-90, before falling short.
Los Angeles converted 33-of-37 free throw attempts (89 percent) and won the rebounding battle 47-34 - both stats that did not go unnoticed by the coach.
"We wanted a big rebounding differential and we got a big rebounding differential," Hamblen said. "I think that was one of the keys to the game for us...(Also) We got to the free throw line and made our free throws."
This was the first meeting of the season between the clubs, as the Pacers will host the Lakers on March 18th at Conseco Fieldhouse in the final contest of the 2004-05 campaign between the clubs...The Pacers have lost six straight and 12 of their last 13 at the Lakers...Indiana fell to 13-17 on the road this season...The Lakers will finish their three-game homestand on Tuesday against the Clippers...LA improved to 21-11 at home this season...Indiana point guard Jamaal Tinsley (foot) missed his sixth straight game.
03/07 01:14:43 ET