Lakers build big lead, down BobcatsMar 5, 2011 - 6:38 AM Los Angeles, CA (Sports Network) - Kobe Bryant had 27 points, Pau Gasol scored 20 with 10 rebounds and the Los Angeles Lakers captured their sixth straight win with a 92-84 victory over Charlotte.
Andrew Bynum filled the lane, setting season-highs with 17 rebounds and six blocked shots for the Lakers, who won easily despite shooting just 38 percent from the floor.
Bryant scored his 27 points in just under 31 minutes, sitting out the entire fourth quarter with LA comfortably ahead.
Lakers guard Derek Fisher went out with a strained left elbow he suffered after getting tangled up with Charlotte center Kwame Brown under the basket with 3:36 remaining in the third quarter.
"It was physical," said Lakers head coach Phil Jackson. "Neither team shot very well. I didn't like any part of tonight's game, but we got the job done and that's what matters."
D.J. Augustin scored 22 points to lead the Bobcats, who have lost three in a row. Charlotte trailed by as many as 17 points in the game despite shooting marginally better than the Lakers at 40 percent.
Making matters worse, the Bobcats lost leading scorer Stephen Jackson late in the third quarter to a left hamstring injury.
Charlotte head coach Paul Silas said Jackson, who has struggled with the injury, "might be out for a little while."
"He really shouldn't have played. He said he was OK, but he's going to have to sit out until he gets better," Silas explained without saying how many games he thought Jackson might miss.
The Lakers may have dodged a bullet on Fisher's injury, which looked bad in real time -- and then even worse in replays.
Fisher and Brown were battling for a rebound when Fisher's left arm became tangled. Brown, 10 inches taller that Fisher at 6-foot-11, jerked the arm back as he jostled for the ball.
Fisher was called for a foul on the play and the Bobcats cut a 16-point deficit to 10 in the final minutes of the third quarter before LA carried a 69-57 lead into the forth.
The Lakers allowed it to get even closer in the fourth. Besides the final margin, Charlotte pulled within eight two other times -- once on a Matt Carroll layup with 10 minutes left and then on D.J. White's three-point play with 6:15 left.
Both times Gasol followed with buckets to restore LA's double-digit lead, and the Lakers hung on down the stretch despite starters Bryant, Bynum, Fisher and Ron Artest sitting out the entire fourth quarter.
"The guys really battled hard, we just didn't have enough," said Silas. "Jack (Jackson) is not healthy, and that's a big problem for us. But we battled."
Lamar Odom had 12 points and 11 boards off the bench for LA and Artest scored 11 in the win.
The Lakers led by as many as 13 points in the first quarter and carried a 29-19 advantage into the second. They made just five more shots before the half and were up 45-35 heading into the locker room.
LA led by as many as 17 points three different times in the third quarter.
The Lakers will hit the road for four tough games against San Antonio, Atlanta, Miami and Dallas...Charlotte, meanwhile, fell to 0-3 on a four-game road trip that wraps up at Portland on Saturday. "That's a great team," Silas said of the Lakers, "and they were ready for us."
- CHARLOTTE: 84
LOS ANGELES: 92
Mar 5 1:03 AM
- CHARLOTTE: 57
LOS ANGELES: 69
End of 3rd
Mar 5 12:20 AM
- CHARLOTTE: 35
LOS ANGELES: 45
Mar 4 11:34 PM
- CHARLOTTE: 19
LOS ANGELES: 29
End of 1st
Mar 4 11:03 PM
- CHARLOTTE: 0
LOS ANGELES: 0
1st Quarter - 12:00
Mar 4 10:43 PM
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