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Lakers vs Phoenix: Lakers' Artest comes up big in victory

Lakers 99, Suns 95 (final)

A day after it was revealed that Ron Artest and Lakers Coach Phil Jackson had a disagreement at practice last week, the forward came up big in the victory over the Phoenix Suns on Wednesday night.

Artest made a three-point shot from the corner off an assist from Kobe Bryant with 1:30 left for a 97-91 Lakers lead.

Artest later stole the ball from Vince Carter after he had gotten an offensive rebound.

That led to a Derek Fisher jumper for a 99-92 lead that stood.

Fisher had been one-for-six shooting up to that point.

Artest finished with 11 points on four-for-10 shooting.

Bryant led the Lakers with 24 points, but he also had three turnovers.

When Lamar Odom went down hard on the court after scoring, it looked to be serious because he was holding his left forearm and Lakers trainer Gary Vitti had to come on the court with 10:02 left.

It turned out that Odom had fallen on his funny bone. After a timeout, Odom came back to play.

Odom finished with 12 points and 10 rebounds.

Lakers 80, Suns 73 (end of third)

The Lakers opened the third quarter looking serious.

They came out aggressively, going on a 14-5 run to open a 63-55 lead, forcing Suns Coach Alvin Gentry to call a timeout with 8:07 left in the quarter.

Kobe Bryant scored the Lakers' first eight points in the quarter. He began his run with a three-pointer, then had a three-point play the old-fashioned way with a basket and a free throw, and followed with  another basket.

Bryant then found Pau Gasol for a score.



Suns 50, Lakers 49 (end of first half)

Defensively, the Lakers were not very good in the second quarter.

Offensively, the Lakers were not very good.

That allowed the Suns to open a one-point lead at the half.

The Lakers scored just 18 points in the second quarter, while giving up 26.

Jared Dudley burned the Lakers for 15 of his 19 first-half points in the quarter, making three three-pointers. The Suns made five three-pointers as a team.

Lamar Odom didn't help matters by picking up his third foul with 9:22 left in the quarter.

That meant Lakers Coach Phil Jackson had to go small at times, putting Ron Artest and Matt Barnes in together at the forward spots.



Lakers 31, Suns 24 (end of first quarter)

The Lakers had no problems scoring against the Suns in the first quarter.

They shot 60% from the field and used a 16-0 run to open a 12-point lead at one point.

Kobe Bryant led the Lakers with seven points on three-for-four shooting.

Andrew Bynum started strong for the Lakers, taking the ball hard inside, going hard to the backboards.

Bynum had six points on two-for-three shooting. But he missed four of six free throws.

He also had four rebounds, two offensive.



Since the Lakers last were beaten by the Suns early in November, Phoenix has become a different team.

The Suns traded Jason Richardson, Hedo Turkoglu and Earl Clark to the Orlando Magic for Vince Carter, Marcin Gortat and Mickael Pietrus.

Carter is the starting shooting guard and Pietrus and Gortat come off the bench.

But Lakers Coach Phi Jackson said not much has changed in the way the Suns operate their offense.

"There are some different things," Jackson said. "But they are going to run the same stuff. Steve Nash is going to try and generate offense from similar things."

Jackson said Carter, who is averaging 15.1 points, is a "great individual player."

Jackson also said Gortat and Pietrus improve the Suns' defense.


-- Broderick Turner, reporting from Phoenix

Comments () | Archives (10)

The comments to this entry are closed.

yellofever - I really appreciate your passion and presence, but please don't have your responses be personal toward KobeMVP. I welcome the debate, just be a little more respectful
Posted by: Mark Medina | January 05, 2011 at 06:00 PM

Dear Mr. Medina i'm pretty offended you singled ME out... but if you want me to follow orders you're gonna have to be a little more specific cause frankly i have no idea what i may have said that has warranted this warning... i think generally i'm a fairly levelheaded blogger who treat others as i am treated.. what i have a problem with is with people who are constantly and strongly imposing their will and opinions on others by calling them disrespectful and unappreciative trolls... if this is how you're gonna police this blog by letting your caped crusader kobemvp freely lurk around and rudely interrupt other peoples discussions as some authoritative figure and then not let them respond in kind then please be forthright and i will gladly step aside and disappear... btw i dont think i'm the first blogger to have a personal issue with this guy.

500 bucks says that pillowbiter Norm Nixon will be posting up outside Staples Center at halftime rocking one of his dozens of sets of Isotoners while wearing a Houndstooth Peacoat. Norm, you arent Biggie Smalls, youre no John Dillinger, lose the lame @$$ F***** threads you SackNibbler

Theyre playing away...DOH!!!Rest assured Norms still rocking the Isotoners....

wat da hell fisher doing one assist wid two points..

go lakers great win we still have a lots of work to do,fish
still have a problem shooting the ball sure he had 4 points
tonight that not going to get the job done.pau need to play
a little more agressithive.more rebounds and dunk shots.get
mean.i dont know why pj didnt put bynum back in the game with
3 minute left.he only had 4 fouls.go lakers

yellofever - I'm not playing favorites. I just saw the tone of language directed at Kobe MVP and thought it seemed a little too contentious for my liking. This doesn't mean I'm banning you or anything. I'm just giving a heads up. You're a valuable part of our blog community and you've had a good track record. Don't feel like you can't mix it up. But I just want to make sure things stay civil and fun.

Did Shannon play?

To much post,can't keep Only thikng that got me in the header BRYANT HAD 24 POINTS BUT HE ALSO HAD 3 what gasol had 5 against the grizz and he's a pf/c.KB is a sg and handles the ball way more.It's those kind of comments that look suspect towards KOBe..........

BTW what about fish and gassy how much points,turns did they have???????????/



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