Bryant's late shot gets Lakers past RaptorsFeb 13, 2012 - 12:29 AM Toronto, ON (Sports Network) - Kobe Bryant broke away from the double team of James Johnson and DeMar DeRozan while Metta World Peace led him perfectly into the right corner on the inbounds pass.
Bryant pulled up along the right baseline with 4.2 seconds on the clock and his jumper hit nothing but net, lifting the Lakers to a thrilling 94-92 win over the Raptors.
"I just noticed a spot open on the baseline. Everything was set for me to try and catch it down there because I knew I could catch and shoot. If I go to the top of the floor the defense can kind of key on me and I'm far away from the basket. Once I noticed that space open it was just a matter of me trying to shake DeRozan and get to that spot," Bryant said.
Following a timeout, Toronto was called for a five-second violation on the ensuing inbounds pass and Bryant made 1-of-2 from the line to make it 94-92. With 3.7 seconds remaining, DeRozan received the inbounds pass, but World Peace defended him well and his shot from the left corner at the buzzer came up well short.
"I like my money, what little bit of money I make. I don't want to send it to the league. Mr. Foster saw it different," Raptors head coach Dwayne Casey said of the five-second call.
Bryant finished with 27 points while Pau Gasol filled the stat sheet with 16 points, 17 rebounds and six assists for the Lakers, who concluded their six- game road trip with a 3-3 mark.
"We just need to find some consistency," World Peace said of the road trip. "Once we have some consistency, we'll be a better team."
Jose Calderon netted a career-high 30 points for Toronto, which has lost four of its last five games.
The Raptors overcame an 18-point first quarter deficit and used a 7-0 spurt to take their first lead of the contest.
Trailing 84-81, Calderon tied the game with a trey and DeRozan fed Ed Davis for a two-handed slam to give the Raptors their first lead. DeRozan then stole Bynum's pass and fed Linas Kleiza for a driving hook shot to make it 88-84 with 2:11 left in the fourth.
After Calderon's jumper made it 90-86 with 1:41 to play, Bryant took over for Los Angeles.
He pulled the visitors within one after nailing a trey from the left wing. Bryant stripped Kleiza on Toronto's next touch and fed a trailing World Peace for the easy layup to make it 91-90 with 31.4 to play.
Not to be outdone, Calderon gave the Raptors the lead right back as he pulled up from the right elbow and nailed the jumper with 16 seconds left.
With Los Angeles already holding a five-point advantage early on, the visitors stretched the lead to 22-6 following a 13-2 run. Gasol and Bynum recorded four points apiece during the surge.
By the time Bryant netted his first field goal midway through the opening quarter, the Lakers were already up 24-8. Gasol, who finished the stanza with eight points, five rebounds and four assists, gave the Lakers their largest lead of 18, 29-11, late in the frame.
The Lakers took a 34-19 lead into the second.
The Raptors outscored the Lakers 11-4 over the final 4:07 of the second quarter. Johnson's transition dunk with 0.8 seconds remaining pulled Toronto within 54-46 entering the break.
Bryant scored nine points in the third as the Lakers took a 73-67 advantage into the final quarter.
Jerryd Bayless missed the game for Toronto with a sore left ankle...The Lakers have won eight of their last nine games against the Raptors...Bynum had 14 points and nine rebounds...The Raptors were 6-of-11 from beyond the arc.
- LOS ANGELES: 94
Feb 12 3:39 PM
- LOS ANGELES: 73
End of 3rd
Feb 12 2:56 PM
- LOS ANGELES: 54
Feb 12 2:09 PM
- LOS ANGELES: 34
End of 1st
Feb 12 1:36 PM
- LOS ANGELES: 0
1st Quarter - 12:00
Feb 12 1:13 PM
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