Lakers rout sluggish Spurs to take 2-0 leadMay 24, 2008 - 5:18 AM By Jonathan Raber PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer
LOS ANGELES (Ticker) -- Once the Los Angeles Lakers got going in Game Two, there was nothing the defending NBA champions could do to stop them.
Lamar Odom finished with 20 points, 12 rebounds and four blocks as the Lakers ran away with a 101-71 victory over the San Antonio Spurs to grab a 2-0 lead in the Western Conference finals on Friday.
"Right now, we have the mentality that we are striving for perfection, so every game we play we feel like we can play better or we are going to have to play better to get to where we want," Odom said. "And tonight we played well, but we want to continue to play better."
Kobe Bryant poured in 22 points and Jordan Farmar scored all but two of his 14 in the fourth quarter for Los Angeles, which outscored San Antonio, 55-34, in the second half to secure the victory.
"I think we are playing good basketball," Farmar said. "We're not really thinking too much, we're just playing, taking what they give us, and taking advantage of it."
After missing an opportunity to steal the opener, the Spurs now face an uphill battle in their quest to capture the series.
Coming in to the conference finals, only 14 of the 222 teams which fell behind 2-0 in a best-of-seven playoff series have won. The Spurs did it for the first time in their history by defeating the New Orleans Hornets in the conference semifinals just days ago.
"No comfort being down 0-2 ever," Spurs forward Tim Duncan said. "We're going home and, one of two things is going to happen, either we're going to turn it around and make this thing into a series or we're not."
The series shifts to San Antonio for the next two, beginning with Sunday's Game Three.
Odom, who scored just eight points on 3-of-12 shooting, proved to be a major match-up problem in this one. The lanky forward scored the game's opening basket on an easy drive to the rim - a move which he repeated throughout the night with little resistance.
"I was catching the ball, getting in scoring position, trying to be as aggressive as possible, finishing plays," Odom said. "I think that really helped us. I get in the game, it seems like my teammates get into it. They cheer for me and they keep me going."
Unlike the first game of the series, in which the Lakers dug out of a 20-point hole, there would be no comeback by the Spurs.
Los Angeles got some separation in the second quarter and never relented. After Duncan's layup tied it at 37-37, the Lakers closed out the half on a 9-0 run to grab their largest lead to that point at 46-37.
They continued to attack at the beginning of the third with an 11-4 spurt that eventually turned into an 18-point advantage on a pair of free throws by Odom.
It was an even more dominant final quarter for Los Angeles, which held its opponents scoreless for over four minutes as the lead increased to 88-60 with 7:19 remaining.
"We couldn't make a shot," Spurs guard Manu Ginobili said. "We shot horrible. And today, we didn't play as good defense as two days ago, so you do the math, there were not many chances of winning today."
San Antonio never led in this one and was done in by poor shooting, hitting on just 34.5 percent (30-of-87) from the field. For the second consecutive game, the Spurs received little help outside of Tony Parker (13 points) and Duncan (12 and 16 rebounds). The rest of the starters combined for just 22 points.
SAN ANTONIO 71
LA LAKERS 101 FINAL
May 23 11:40 PM
SAN ANTONIO 57
LA LAKERS 74 END, 3RD QTR
May 23 11:09 PM
SAN ANTONIO 37
LA LAKERS 46 HALFTIME
May 23 10:19 PM
SAN ANTONIO 16
LA LAKERS 21 END, 1ST QTR
May 23 9:46 PM
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