for this game

Lakers bounce back with win over 76ers

Dec 4, 2008 - 5:18 AM By Mike Luongo PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

PHILADELPHIA (Ticker) -- It didn't take long for the Los Angeles Lakers to shake off a tough loss.

Led by the scoring of Vladimir Radmanovic and Kobe Bryant, Los Angeles posted a 114-102 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers on Wednesday.

"Radmanovic came in and hit some big shots that brought us back quickly so we didn't have to struggle," Lakers coach Phil Jackson said. "We knew that we were getting off slow and the guys were lethargic and Kobe got it going in the game. He found guys and we had some easy run outs after that."

On Tuesday night the Lakers fell apart in the fourth quarter and suffered a 118-117 loss at Indiana. They rebounded nicely after a slow start against the 76ers to improve to 15-2.

Bryant had 32 points while Radmanovic scored all 11 of his points in the opening quarter to give the Lakers their eighth win in their last nine games.

"It's fun to win and to make big plays down the stretch, because that's what your team relies on you to do," Bryant said. "I didn't come through for us last night so it felt good to come through tonight."

The Sixers raced out to a 12-3 lead but the Lakers were up six by the end of the first quarter. Los Angeles led 61-51 at the break and extended the lead to 85-69 entering the fourth.

"It was a tough team that we played tonight," 76ers coach Maurice Cheeks said. "They are fueled by Kobe but they are also fueled by their defense. They kept us out of offensive sets and they kept us from running up and down the floor."

Pau Gasol had 22 points and 13 rebounds and Andrew Bynum added 18 points for the Lakers, who shot 58 percent (43-of-74) from the field.

"We know what we have," Gasol said. "We have a lot of weapons and a lot of potential. We just tried to go out and play 100 percent and let everything fall into place."

Philadelphia went up by double-digits early, 15-5, but the Lakers took over as Radmanovic hit two of his three first quarter 3-pointers to key a 16-4 run.

Derek Fisher tied the game, 21-21, and Bryant capped the run with a basket that gave the Lakers their first led of the game at 23-21 with 3:37 to go. Bryant later scored four points in an 8-0 Los Angeles run that pushed their lead to 31-23 with 43 seconds to go in the first.

"We're a very patient team and we don't rattle easily," Bryant said. "We've been through a lot of wars and a lot of battles. When a team jumps out early we just collect ourselves and go back to just execution; what they are doing and how we can counter that."

The Lakers opened the second quarter with a 12-2 run. Jordan Farmar capped the run with a 3-pointer and then a free throw to give Los Angeles a 43-29 lead with 8:49 to play. After Philadelphia closed the gap with an 8-2 run to make it 50-43, Bryant hit a jumper with 2:35 to go that matched the largest Lakers lead at 58-43.

Philadelphia tried to make a game of it, opening the third quarter with a 7-0 run to pull to 63-58 on a free throw by Samuel Dalembert. The Lakers got seven points from Bynum including a three-point play during a 20-6 run that was keyed by a three by Bryant with 1:59 that pushed the lead to 83-64.

"Offensively, we have all the confidence in the world and we believe that we can score all the points that we want to," Bryant said. The key for us is defense and being able to hold teams down when the time comes. In the third quarter, we were able to do that."

"The quality of our team allows us to have those runs," Gasol said. "We have to make sure that we don't allow the other team to get out intensity down and come back on us."

Andre Miller scored 26 points and Andre Iguodala added 19 for Philadelphia, which only got three points from Elton Brand who sat out most of the second half with a strained right hamstring.

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