Lakers vs. Bobcats Recap: Lakers Grit Out Tough Road Win In Charlotte

The Lakers looked to end their three-game losing streak tonight as they faced the Charlotte Bobcats on the second night of a back-to-back. The team has gone through a rough time adjusting to playing with Kobe, and having to do it on the road is not making things that much easier. Fortunately against the Bobcats, they were able to pull of a close win. Here’s the quarter by quarter recap.

First Quarter

The Lakers came out moving the ball very well in the first quarter, and were able to get some good looks but they just couldn’t convert. Pau was very aggressive and the Lakers looked to get him the ball on every possession, but he struggled, as he shot 1-for-6 from the field in the 1st.

Kobe had bounce in his step, and was looking to shoot the ball a lot more. He finished the first quarter with eight points, one rebound, and two assists.

The Bobcats looked to attack the Lakers inside, and were very successful going to Al Jefferson in the post. 14 of the Bobcats 23 points in the quarter came from inside the paint.
Score: Lakers trailed the Bobcats 22-23 at the end of the first quarter.

Second Quarter

The Lakers started the second quarter missing their first five shots, and didn’t score their first basket until Shawne Williams hit a corner three with 8:35 left in the period. Coach D’Antoni was forced to bring in the staters a bit earlier than usual because the second unit struggled to give some solid production, and the Bobcats were on the verge of making a run.

The first unit came in settled things down with Kobe at point guard, as he was able to help guys get some easier baskets and control the tempo. The Lakers defense played a lot better in the second, as they forced the Bobcats to turn the ball over and take contested shots.

Kobe continued to shoot the ball in the second quarter built on his productive first. He finished the first half with 13 points, three rebounds, and four assists.

Score: Lakers lead the Bobcats 44-43 at the end of the second quarter.

Third Quarter

The Lakers started the second half in very sluggish fashion, as the Bobcats came on a 6-0 run to begin the third quarter.  The Lakers failed to communicate on the defensive end and allowed the Bobcats to get out in transition to get easy baskets. On the offensive end they turned the ball over on too many occasions, and failed to make open jump shots, because of that, the Lakers trailed by as much as nine points early in the quarter.

In the middle of the third the Lakers were able to settle themselves back into the game due to an inspired effort given largely by Jordan Hill. His energy and effort prevented the Lakers fall falling behind by a large margin, and ultimately kept them in this game going into the 4th quarter.

Score: Lakers trailed the Bobcats 64-68 at the end of the third quarter.

Fourth Quarter

The second unit was able to come and play some inspired basketball early in the fourth quarter. The unit with Henry, Young, Johnson, Williams, and Sacre was very active on defense and got pretty hot from the field, ultimately allowing the Lakers to comeback from the four point deficit and take a lead early in the fourth after a 9-2 run.

Unfortunately the Bobcats came back with a run of their own, which would ultimately put the Lakers back into a four point deficit when the starters came in to close the game. The starters found a way to make this game close going into the final minute of the game after a some big shots being made down the stretch.

The Lakers had a one point lead on the final possession, and needed their defense to come up with one final stop in order to win the game.

Fortunately they did, and were able to grit out a tough three-point win in Charlotte, largely inspired by a very efficient game from Kobe Bryant: 21 points, seven rebounds, eight assists.

Final Score: Lakers win 88-85

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