As if retiring Shaq’s jersey wasn’t good enough, the Lakers played an almost perfect game in their 101-81 defeat of the Dallas Mavericks. Kobe Bryant had a triple-double with 23 points, 11 rebounds, and 11 assists while playing 47 minutes.
Along with Kobe’s impressive stat line against the Mavericks, four other Lakers scored in double figures and the Lakers were able to bury any chance the Mavs had about catching them for the final playoff spot. With Shaq in the building, Dwight Howard had an impressive night with 24 points and 12 rebounds.
It was evident from the start that Kobe was not only going to score, but he was also going to be the facilitator. In his battle against Dirk Nowitzki, Kobe scored the ball and got his teammates involved, while Nowitzki struggled throughout. For the game, Nowitzki had only 11 points and was a subpar 4-13 from the field.
The return of Pau Gasol has played huge dividends for the Lakers since he is able to set up at the high post and either make a play or take a shot himself. Without Steve Nash, Gasol gives the Lakers another playmaker to go along with Bryant.
Our friends at bballbreakdown put together a video breaking down last night’s important win over the Mavericks.
In case you missed it, be sure to check out Shaq’s jersey retirement press conference!
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