The Lakers had been winning as of late, which hasn’t been often this season. They are 5-1 in their last six games, with their last victory happening in Detroit on Super Bowl Sunday.
But coming into their game against the Brooklyn Nets in the brand-spanking new Barclays Center, the Lakers were shorthanded. Dwight Howard was out with his shoulder injury. In addition to that, Metta World Peace was suspended for Tuesday night’s contest for grabbing the Pistons’ Brandon Knight on his neck. Kobe Bryant was also dealing with elbow tendinitis. Did the Lakers keep it rolling? Did Brooklyn avenge their earlier loss against the Lakers? Let’s check out the recap.
The Nets and Lakers were playing some nice basketball, though the defense could’ve been better on either side. Still, it’s encouraging to see Pau Gasol get off to a great start as he scored six early points.
Nets announcers making Pau seem like he’s just got this good. Lmao good god I need our announcers
— Senator Mark Merlot (@FastTimesAtRF) February 6, 2013
Look at this nice teamwork from the Lakers.
And then it got ugly. The game was tied at 14 at one point but the Lakers only scored four points in about the last five minutes. Deron Williams scored 11 points for the Nets. The Lakers shot less than 40 percent in the first quarter. Both teams were not playing pretty basketball, though.
The Nets led the Lakers after the first quarter, 24-18.
It took a while but the Lakers scored about a minute and a half into the quarter with an Earl Clark swish. The teams continued to play sloppily but Earl Clark kept making buckets, scoring the first six points of the second quarter for L.A. He also may have gotten away with a travel. Probably.
Earl Clark getting the LeBron treatment. That’s when you know you’ve made it. #AnCLARKy
— Ryan Kelapire (@RyanKelapire) February 6, 2013
Robert Sacre got into the act, too, scoring four early points. Clark continued his hustle as he scored 10 early points and grabbed six boards.
Then Pau Gasol got inside, getting fouls from the Nets big men and scoring. The Lakers’ 9-2 run helped them get a 39-34 lead.
The Nets couldn’t make a basket to save their lives. The Lakers took advantage. Kobe had a nice putback near the end of the second quarter.
However, Mirza Teletovic made a three-pointer before the half to cut the Laker lead down to 49-40.
The Lakers continued their run. Kobe welcomed us to the second half.
L.A. was able to get the lead to 13 but it quickly evaporated as the Lakers suddenly went cold.
Of course they did. Jesus. RT @medinalakersnba: Nets have gone on a 14-6 run to open the 3rd. Lakers can’t keep foot off the gas pedal
— Phillip Barnett (@imsohideouss) February 6, 2013
A Gerald Wallace putback gave the Nets a 60-59 lead as the Lakers had trouble guarding the suddenly rejuvenated Nets.
However, Kobe Bryant broke Wallace off a little something something.
The Lakers did just enough to hold the Nets off. We were treated to some nice Kobe Bryant moves. But more importantly, the Lakers led the Nets after the third quarter, 67-64.
Steve Blake instantly helped out the Lakers with two jumpers, the latter one being a three-pointer.
Steve Blake is hot like FIYAHHHH!
— ℓαкεrεℓℓα (@Lakerella) February 6, 2013
Blake even had this nice crossover.
But a C.J. Watson three and a Deron Williams lay-up gave the lead back to the Nets. Pau Gasol would counter with a jumper to give the lead back to the Lakers. Then Kris Humphries made a jumper of his own for another lead change.
Gasol would get hurt and go to the locker room after landing awkwardly trying to contest Brook Lopez’s shot.
But there is nothing awkward about this from Kobe. He got the good ol’ time machine for this.
Then Earl Clark made a jumper to put the Lakers up five points. The Nets couldn’t come back from that Lakers flurry and Los Angeles won its sixth game out of their last seven, 92-83.
POINTS: Kobe Bryant, 21
REBOUNDS: Earl Clark, 12
ASSISTS: Steve Nash, 8
BLOCKS: Pau Gasol, 2
STEALS: Kobe Bryant, 4