NBA Game Summary - Minnesota at LA Lakers
(Friday, March 16th)
Final Score: LA Lakers 97, Minnesota 92
Los Angeles, CA (Sports Network) - Kobe Bryant made five three-pointers en route to 28 points as the Los Angeles Lakers held off the Minnesota Timberwolves, 97-92, at Staples Center on Friday.
Andrew Bynum recorded a double-double with 15 points and 14 rebounds, while Pau Gasol and Matt Barnes netted 17 points apiece to give the Lakers their sixth straight victory. Gasol added 11 boards.
Kevin Love poured in 27 points and grabbed 15 boards and Nikola Pekovic added 20 points and 12 rebounds. Luke Ridnour chipped in 12 points and 11 assists for the T'wolves, who have dropped four of five since losing guard Ricky Rubio to an ACL tear on March 9 against the Lakers.
"We have to play with more urgency if we want to stay in this," said Minnesota head coach Rick Adelman. "We shouldn't just talk about it, we have to do it. We have to show it."
Ramon Sessions got his first bucket as a Laker with a floater in the first quarter to help Los Angeles to a 23-19 edge at the end of one.
"I just got in here this morning. I got a ten minute nap and I was ready to go," said Sessions about his first game in purple and gold. "In Cleveland it was up and down the court, but here it's different. When you have talent like this, it's easy for me. It's a dream come true to be with this organization."
Derrick Williams brought the T'wolves within two to start the second, but the Lakers reeled off a 19-6 flurry to take a 42-27 lead with 4:44 left until halftime.
Barnes hit two from three-point range during the run, while Troy Murphy buried a triple to spark the spurt.
Love brought Minnesota back into the game, tallying the final five points of the half to send the T'wolves into the locker room trailing 50-41.
Minnesota cut the lead to seven with under seven minutes left in the third, but Bryant sank a triple to spark a 9-0 surge that gave the Lakers a comfortable 68-52 lead late in the third.
The Timberwolves once again battled back in the fourth, trimming the lead to six on a Love jumper with 5:10 left, but Bryant scored the next four to reestablish a double-digit advantage.
Ridnour and Barea each brought the visitors to within six with under a minute left, but the Lakers went 6-for-6 from the line in the final 20 seconds to hang on for the victory.
Los Angeles played its first game without veteran Derek Fisher after the team sent Fisher to the Rockets for Jordan Hill. The Lakers also dealt Luke Walton, Jason Kapono and a first-round pick to Cleveland for Ramon Sessions and Christian Eyenga...The Lakers have beaten Minnesota 19 straight times, and 12 straight times at Staples Center.
03/17 02:02:14 ET