Lakers (33-13) vs. Utah Jazz (27-18)
Lakers came into tonight’s game with 16 straight home wins over the Utah Jazz, including the playoffs.
Lakers defense was a big problem for the Jazz. The Lakers were forcing tough shots and turnovers. Andrew Bynum had 2 blocks in the first quarter.
Lakers led 37-22 at the end of the quarter. Lakers shot 72.2% and the Jazz shot 36.4%.
The Lakers offense kept their touch in the second quarter. Everyone moved the basketball around resulting in easy buckets. Out of the 24 field goals made in the half, the Lakers had 20 assists. Their bench also outscored Utah 20-3 in the half.
Lakers led 66-38 at the half.
Both teams went back and forth in the third quarter. Raja Bell picked up a technical foul for arguing a call. The entire Jazz team was frustrated with the way the game had been going. 93-65 was the score at the end fo the third.
Lakers’ bench pushed the tempo and went on a 13-0 run to extend the lead to 38. Game became a little chippy when Earl Watson and Steve Blake almost got into an altercation. In the very next possession, Derrick Caracter bumped Watson twice for the offensive foul. Watson was upset, but nothing escalated.
Joe Smith played for the first time since Jan. 11th. The third squad played sloppy down the stretch, but the Jazz never came close.
20 assists for the Lakers in first half.
19 straight games with a block for Bynum
17 straight home wins against the Utah Jazz
13 points away from tying Hakeem for 7th on all-time scoring list for Kobe
3 technical fouls (Jazz Ast. Coach; Deron Williams; Raja Bell)
Box Score: Lakers 120 Jazz 91
Picture Credit: AP