Kobe Bryant scored 31 points, leading the Los Angeles Lakers to a 118-107 win over the Milwaukee Bucks to open their three-game road trip through the midwest. The Lakers have beaten the Bucks in 25 of their last 30 meetings, including each of the last six meetings. Shannon Brown scored 21 points, on 7-of-9 shooting, off the bench for the Lakers, who are 3-1 on the road this season.
The Lakers trailed Milwaukee 59-57 at halftime, but pulled ahead for good with seven minutes remaining in the third quarter, on a Kobe Bryant jumper. After shooting 55.3% in the first half, the Bucks were held to 35.7% shooting in the second half, and scored just 48 points in the final 24 minutes. Brandon Jennings led the Bucks with 31 points in defeat.
If watching three-pointers reign down from the heavens is your idea of basketball fun, watching Laker games just might be for you. Tonight, the Lakers made 10 of 16 shots from beyond the arc, while the Bucks made nine of 24 triples. On the season, Laker games feature an average of 43.6 three-point attempts, the most in the NBA, and those shots are going in. The Lakers have made an NBA-best 42.9%, while they have allowed their opponents to make 38.0%. The NBA league average three-point shooting, coming into tonight, was 35.8%.
For the second straight game, Lamar Odom was involved in a ridiculous call which hurt the Lakers. With 6:27 remaining in the game, after not getting a foul call on the offensive end, Odom bumped, or let's say lightly shoved Drew Gooden while running down the floor. Odom was amazingly called for a flagrant foul on a play that should have been a personal foul at worst. On Sunday against Phoenix, Odom was called for a technical as part of the NBA's "no emotion" rule with under a minute remaining in the game.
The Lakers resume their road trip tomorrow night in Detroit Wednesday night against the Pistons.
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