Posts tagged Matt Barnes
There were five ejections and four technical fouls at Staples Center on Thursday night, but nothing could stop the Lakers methodical second half romp over the Dallas Mavericks 110-82, as they won the battle for second place in the Western Conference.
Kobe Bryant scored a game-high 28 points, and Andrew Bynum had 18 points and 13 rebounds as the Lakers moved their record to an NBA-best 16-1 since the All-Star break. They’ve also won eight straight.
In a playoff-like atmosphere, with the Lakers running away in the fourth quarter, the Mavs’ Jason Terry pushed Steve Blake under the basket, sparking a skirmish between the players on the court.
Matt Barnes, Blake, Terry, and Brendan Haywood were all ejected, with Terry picking up a flagrant-2 foul. Minutes later, Shannon Brown was ejected after another shoving match that followed a hard foul on Pau Gasol with the game well out of reach.
Neither of the incidents could take away what was a dominating performance by the world champs, who held Dallas to just 31 points in the second half, including closing the game on a 19-2 run. The two teams could face each at some point during the playoffs.
Gasol chipped in with 20 points and six rebounds, and Lamar Odom had 16 points and 11 rebounds off the bench, scoring 11 straight points at the end of the third quarter and the beginning of the fourth, that turned a 79-70 game into a 90-70 lead. Ron Artest poured in 13 points.
The Lakers led a tight game 54-51 at halftime, and then slowly started to pull away late in the third quarter. After Odom’s 11-0 run late in the game, Dallas responded after the first flare up to get to within 91-80. Bryant was reinserted into the game to restore order, scoring six straight points and the game was never close again.
For the game, the Lakers shot 44.7% (38-85) from the field, and hit 28-39 (71.8%) from the foul line. They outrebounded the Mavericks 52-47, and committed just seven turnovers. Dallas shot a woeful 36.1% (30-83) from the floor, and a miserable 6-26 (23.1%) from beyond the arc. They scored just 12 points in the final quarter.
Dirk Nowitski led the visitors with 27 points and 13 rebounds, one of only three Mavs in double figures. Peja Stojakovic had 13 and J.J. Barea had 10 points off the bench. Before getting tossed from the game, Terry hit just 2-9 shots for five points. Nowitski was clearly the lone bright spot on this night.
The win put the Lakers 1.5 games ahead of Dallas for second place in the Western Conference, and two games ahead in the loss column. They also hold the tiebreaker having beaten Dallas 2-1 this season. They are also only 2.5 games behind the San Antonio Spurs for first in the West after Boston’s 107-97 in San Antonio Thursday.
The Lakers play tomorrow night in Utah against the struggling Jazz, having just finished a 7-0 homestand. They’ll return back to Staples Center for a Sunday for an afternoon game against the surging Denver Nuggets.
The Lakers completed a perfect 3-0 road trip, with a 112-95 whitewashing of the Minnesota Timberwolves at the Target Center on Friday night.
It was also a perfect night for Matt Barnes, and not just figuratively. Off the bench, he led the Lakers with 24 points, and went a perfect 7-7 from the field, including 5-5 from the 3-point line, and 5-5 from the foul line. And to top it off, he also had seven rebounds, six assists, and two steals. This was easily Barnes’ best game as a Laker and maybe of his career.
Kobe Bryant had 23 points and eight rebounds, and several highlight plays despite shooting just 8-27 from the field. Pau Gasol shook off tweaking his ankle early in third quarter, and scored 16 points and grabbed 14 rebounds. Lamar Odom added 11 points, eight rebounds, and seven assists.
The Lakers didn’t take the Wolves lightly this time like they did in Los Angeles two weeks ago. They came to play from the start, led 51-41 at halftime, and by as much as 23 in the fourth quarter. They emptied the bench and cruised to the victory to finish up an undefeated road trip, with all three wins by at least 11 points.
The Lakers also made a concerted effort to shut down the league’s leading rebounder Kevin Love, as he didn’t score in the game and grabbed just seven rebounds in 34 minutes of action. Love victimized the Lakers last time for 23 points and 24 rebounds, and recently had a 30/30 game against the New York Knicks. But on this night, he was completely taken out of the game by Lamar Odom.
Minnesota did have a couple of bright spots though. Darko Milicic scored 23 points, grabbed 16 rebounds, and had six blocks, in what was arguably the best game of his career. And Michael Beasley continues his resurgence up north, scoring 25 points and notching 10 rebounds.
The Lakers did get a scare when Shannon Brown was poked in the right eye early in the fourth quarter on a layup attempt. He stayed in the game to shoot free throws, but was having a hard time seeing out of the eye, and went to the locker room to be checked out. He did return to the game and played several minutes, as it appeared the injury was not that serious.
The Lakers also did a good job on the defensive end, holding the Wolves under 40% (39.6%) from the field, and just 6-26 (23.1%) from the 3-point line. They also had 10 steals and eight blocked shots.
The team returns home for a Sunday contest against Monta Ellis and the Golden St. Warriors at Staples Center. The Lakers beat the Warriors 107-83 back on Halloween night at Staples, as the team from the Bay Area played without guard Stephen Curry. This time they will be without All-Star forward David Lee, who is recovering from an infected elbow suffered in a game last week against the New York Knicks.
The Lakers made sure their losing streak ended at two, as they came back strong in the second half and defeated the Milwaukee Bucks 118-107 at the Bradley Center in Milwaukee on Tuesday night.
Kobe Bryant scored 31 points, grabbed seven rebounds, and had three assists in a solid all-around performance. But it was really the play of Shannon Brown off the bench that propelled the Lakers to victory. Brown scored 16 of his 21 points in the decisive fourth quarter, including 4-5 from behind the 3-point line, helping the Lakers erase a 59-57 halftime deficit.
Pau Gasol had 18 points and 10 rebounds, and Lamar Odom added 13 points and 7 boards, as the Lakers rebounded from Sunday night’s shocking loss at home to the Suns at home where they allowed 22 3-pointers. On this night, they held the Bucks to 46.1% from the field, and just 9-24 from beyond the arc (37.5%).
The Bucks were hot early though, hitting 8-13 from the 3-point line, and taking a back-and-forth battle to the locker room with a lead. The Lakers turned up the defense in the second half, holding the Bucks to 22 points in the third quarter and taking a 90-81 lead into the final period. They Bucks never got closer than seven after that.
The Lakers shot the ball well in all facets on Tuesday, hitting 53.8% from the field, 82.8% from the foul line, and a season-high 10-16 (62.5%) from the 3-point line.
Los Angeles-born Brandon Jennings led the home team with 31 points and 6 assists. Drew Gooden had a superb game with 22 points and 13 rebounds, and Andrew Bogut, still struggling with his shooting elbow, scored 12, and grabbed 18 rebounds (9 offensive), but hit just 2-10 from the free throw line.
The Lakers play the second game on this three-game trip tomorrow night in Detroit against the struggling Pistons at the Palace of Auburn Hills. The Lakers have beaten the Pistons the last two years at the Palace, after dropping six straight there.
Link: Lakers @ Bucks Box Score
Let me start off by saying that a healthy Luke Walton is a productive Luke Walton. He has good fundamentals, whether from his time at Arizona or being schooled by his father and brothers. He is the type of player that works well in the designs of the triangle offense because he has a pass the ball, team first mentality that is really the basis of the triangle. Move the ball continuously until you have a high percentage shot. I hadn’t realized, until starting to work on this, that he had the fewest games played and lowest point total for the Lakers last season. He was also next to last in minutes played (Hello, Adam Morrison!) The Lakers have many options at the small forward position. Ron Artest will be the starter, and Matt Barnes (hopefully), Lamar Odom, Devin Ebanks and Kobe could all play minutes as needed. Given that Luke is 30 and has averaged approximately 60 games a season over his 7 year career, it’s probably a good thing for the Lakers to have choices. Luke stated that his focus during the off-season was to get his back stronger and healthier, and he work with a strengthening coach, a back specialist, a yoga teacher and a pilates instructor. So ideally he will be in top form at the beginning of the season. I don’t think he was too happy about being limited to 29 games last year due to his back problems. I expect that should he have health or injury issues this season and miss half a season again, he will decide he’s played enough, made enough money, and has as many rings as Pops (1 of 3 father/son combos). Rumor has it that he was considering retirement already, and like Yao Ming, if he can’t stay healthy, then he’ll be gone. For more on Luke’s summer, visit Lakers.com