Lakers Win Seventh Straight Game As They Topple First-Place Spurs

The Lakers have won seven straight games.

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Lakers Extend Winning Streak To 7 With Dominating Win Over San Antonio

Heading into the All-Star Game the Lakers were reeling. They had lost three straight games to inferior opponents, and people were starting to wonder if they really had what it takes to win another Championship. How quicly things can change in a just a few short weeks.

The Lakers have now won seven straight games, punctuated by a 99-83 win on the road in San Antonio, and it wasn't really even that close. The Lakers now look like the team everyone thought knew they were heading into the Season. They got off to a huge first quarter lead and never looked back, and as Tom Ziller of SB Nation points out, that is kind of a character reversal for the Spurs.

The San Antonio Spurs are usually the team rolling out to an early 20-point lead by being more clinical and sharp than their opponent. That wasn't the case Sunday, when an early surge from the Los Angeles Lakers effectively knocked the Spurs out in the first quarter on the champs' way to a 99-83 victory. L.A. outscored the Spurs 34-13 in the first quarter. The Spurs simply don't give up 34 points in a quarter, and simply don't score as few as 13 points in a quarter. That both happened in the same quarter at home against a rival the Spurs would like to bludgeon with a dull object is something amazing.

The Lakers might not be able to catch the Spurs for first place in the Western Conference before the season ends, but yesterday they showed that they have no problem winning a big game on the road in San Antonio. Silver Screen and Roll is taking it as a sign of things to come.

There it is, amigos. The win we've been waiting and pleading for all season long. The crushing show of force that would set off air-raid sirens around the league, letting everyone know the champs were getting serious. The Spurs have been the class of the NBA through the first three quarters of the regular season, but this afternoon they were a little bug hovering in the breeze as the Laker windshield plowed through their airspace at 80 miles an hour.

But not everyone is happy. In the interest of equal time, we present an article by Billy Witz at Fox Sports who was a little disappointed to see how the Lakers acted in their rout of the Spurs.

What's that phrase: Act like you've been there before?

The Lakers did not. If it was not Artest mugging for the crowd, it was Kobe Bryant sinking a jumper and turning to glare at the Spurs' bench and picking up a technical foul for barking at Manu Ginobili, Derek Fisher kvetching over foul calls with the Lakers up by 20 late in the fourth quarter, or Shannon Brown showboating with between-the-legs dribbles.

It's a big win for the Lakers, that is for sure. But it doesn't make them the best team in the NBA overnight, and it certainly doesn't assure them of an NBA Championship Just like we were saying that you ccouldn't write the Lakers off when they were struggling because it was the regular season, you can't crown them for the very same reason. Having said that, this is a big, big win for the two-time defending champs.

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Lakers Roll Over Spurs At AT&T Center, 99-83

San Antonio, TX (Sports Network) – In what many considered to be a Western Conference Finals preview, the Los Angeles Lakers made an emphatic statement behind 26 points, seven rebounds and five assists from Kobe Bryant in a 99-83 whipping of San Antonio at the AT&T Center that wasn’t as close as the final score indicated.

Pau Gasol totaled 21 points, six boards and five assists while Lamar Odom supplied 15 points and six assists for the Lakers, who have won seven straight since the All-Star break. LA has also held four consecutive opponents to less than 90 points.

Gary Neal provided 15 points off the bench while Tony Parker and George Hill netted 14 points apiece for the Spurs, who had a 22-game home win streak snapped. San Antonio dropped to 29-3 with its first loss on home hardwood since a November 26 setback to Dallas.

Tim Duncan made just 1-of-7 shots in matching a season-low with two points and Manu Ginobili added only six points after a 3-of-10 shooting effort.

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Lakers Vs. Spurs: Lakers Leading Spurs After Three Quarters

The Los Angeles Lakers remain in control of this game, leading the San Antonio Spurs 81 to 52 at the AT&T Center in San Antonio.

Kobe Bryant leads both teams in points with 24. Pau Gasol isn’t too far behind with 17 points. Andrew Bynum leads both teams in rebounds with 15. The Lakers have thus far outscored the Spurs in every quarter.

The Lakers went off on all cylinders to begin the game as they scored 34 points against the Spurs, who are 11th in the NBA in points allowed. The offensive game never quit as the Lakers outscored the Spurs 31-24 in the 2nd quarter to stay ahead at the half leading 65-37.

Lakers are out rebounding the Spurs 40-29 and also have a out rebounded the Spurs on the offensive side 13-11.

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Lakers Vs. Spurs: By The Numbers

The Los Angeles Lakers have been playing wonderfully since the All-Star break, winning six straight games. Today in San Antonio, they face a Spurs team that has been playing wonderfully all season, as the Spurs own the NBA's best record at 51-11, a virtual lock for the top seed in the Western Conference playoffs. However, these two teams have been remarkably similar this season.

The Spurs have an ever so slight lead in offensive efficiency, at 1.116 points per possession, second in the NBA. The Lakers are third at 1.115 points per possession. In defensive efficiency, the Spurs allow 1.039 points per possession, seventh in the league, one spot ahead of the Lakers at 1.046 points per possession.

The Lakers have excelled in offensive rebounding, third in the league collecting 29.6% of available offensive boards. San Antonio, meanwhile, has been better on the defensive glass, tied for 11th in the league at 74.6% of available defensive boards, compared to the Lakers, who are 20th at 72.7%. The Spurs lead the NBA in three-point shooting, at 40.3%. The Lakers started the season on fire from beyond the arc, making 40.9% of their shots from distance through November, but have only made 33.0% in the 45 games since.

For more news and information on today's game, be sure to read Silver Screen and Roll.

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Lakers Vs. Spurs: Kobe Bryant Closing In On Moses Malone On NBA All-Time Scoring List

The Los Angeles Lakers are in San Antonio today to face the Spurs, holders of the best record in the NBA at 51-11. The Lakers have been playing well since the All-Star break, winning all six of their games, but are looking for their first win over San Antonio this season. They will need a big game from Kobe Bryant to beat the Spurs, and Kobe is closing in on another milestone himself. Bryant is 38 points shy of Moses Malone for sixth place on the NBA all-time scoring list.

Bryant began the season in 12th place on the all-time list, but has passed four legends this season. Kobe passed former Celtic John Havlicek on December 10, passed Dominique Wilkins on January 4, passed Oscar Robertson on January 7, passed Hakeem Olajuwon on January 28, and passed Elvin Hayes on February 27:

NBA All-Time Scoring List
Rank Player Points Avg
1 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar   38,387 24.6
2 Karl Malone 36,928 25.0
3 Michael Jordan 32,292 30.12
4 Wilt Chamberlain 31,419 30.07
5 Shaquille O'Neal 28,590 23.7
6 Moses Malone 27,409 20.6
7 Kobe Bryant 27,371 25.3
8 Elvin Hayes 27,313 21.0
9 Hakeem Olajuwon 26,946 21.8
10 Oscar Robertson 26,710 25.7
11 Dominique Wilkins   
26,668 24.8
12 John Havlicek
26,395 20.8

Malone played the final season of his great career with the Spurs, in 1994-1995. The 39-year old averaged 2.9 points and 2.7 rebounds in 8.8 minutes per game in 17 games that season. Bryant has scored a total of 37 points in two games against the Spurs this season, and he made a total of 13 of 45 field goal attempts (28.9%).

For more news and information on today's game, be sure to read Silver Screen and Roll.

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Lakers Vs. Spurs: Game Time, Broadcast Info, Lineups, & Notes

The Los Angeles Lakers look to extend their winning streak to seven games as they face the San Antonio Spurs at AT&T Center. The Lakers have lost both matchups with the Spurs this season, once at home and once away, and have lost three straight to the Spurs overall. Here are the pertinent details of today's game:

Teams: Lakers (44-19) vs. Spurs (51-11)

Location: AT&T Center, San Antonio

Game Time: 12:30 p.m. PST

TV: ABC

Streaks: Lakers (won 6); Spurs (won 1)

Previous Meetings: The Spurs beat the Lakers 97-82 on December 28 in San Antonio, and beat the Lakers on a last-second tip-in by Antonio McDyess at Staples Center on February 3.

Probable Starting Lineups:

Lakers

Spurs

For more information on today's game, be sure to read Silver Screen and Roll.

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Lakers Vs. Spurs: Andrew Bynum A Key For L.A.

The Los Angeles Lakers are the two-time defending NBA champions, but the San Antonio Spurs have been the best team in the NBA this season. At 51-11, the Spurs have an insurmountable eight-game lead over the Lakers in the loss column, so the Lakers won't be catching San Antonio for the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference. However, for the Lakers to beat the Spurs, whether today or in their potential playoff matchup, the Lakers will need center Andrew Bynum at his best.

Bynum had a quiet nine points on Friday night against the Bobcats, but he absolutely dominated the middle. He had a season high in rebounds (17) and blocked shots (six) as the Lakers won their sixth straight game. Dexter Fishmore of Silver Screen and Roll was quite impressed with Bynum's performance:

He was quick, rangy and aggressive and swallowed up nearly everything the Cats tried to get around the hoop. His presence visibly intimidated Charlotte ballhandlers, who for long stretches simply stopped trying to penetrate for fear of Bynum's rock-star-from-Mars awesomeness. Drew's performance tonight was another step in his development into a guy who can tilt the playing field in the Lakers' favor without a lot of touches.

Bynum's stellar play of late earned him player of the week honors at Silver Screen and Roll:

It took a while, but Andrew looks to have completely shaken off any rust from his last injury.  He looks confident in his knee, and it's translating to confidence in his game.   The Bynum Smash has returned, and with it the Lakers we love to love have to.  The Lakers have held their last three opponents under 90 points, in large part to Andrew's defense and rebounding.

When the Lakers lost to the Spurs in San Antonio in December, Bynum was still coming off the bench, only in his seventh game back, as he had 10 points and seven boards in 22 minutes. In the Lakers' one-point loss to the Spurs at Staples Center in February, Bynum had 10 points, 10 rebounds, and six assists in 29 minutes. If he can stay on the floor today, and play like he has been of late, Bynum can help guide the Lakers to a much-needed win today in San Antonio against the Spurs.

For more news and information on today's game, be sure to read Silver Screen and Roll.

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Lakers Battle Spurs In Possible Western Conference Finals Preview On ABC

The Los Angeles Lakers have won all six games since the All-Star break, but face their toughest test yet Sunday as they face the San Antonio Spurs, owners of the best record in the NBA, in a nationally televised game on ABC. The game today begins a seven-day, four-game road trip for the Lakers, all against teams that will make the playoffs this season. The Lakers have lost both matchups with the Spurs this season.

Kobe Bryant is 38 points shy of matching Moses Malone, the one-time Spur, for sixth place on the NBA all-time scoring list. He has scored 38 points or more four times in 63 games this season, and against the Spurs he has averaged 18.5 points per contest this year. In each game, the Spurs held Kobe to under-30% shooting, as he made a total of 13 of 45 field goal attempts in two games this season.

The Spurs were supposed to be without Tony Parker in Sunday's game, as he was going to miss two to four weeks with a left calf injury. However, Parker returned to the Spurs on Friday night after missing only two games, scoring 15 points and dishing out eight assists in 23 minutes as San Antonio destroyed the Miami Heat by 30 points. Parker has scored 44 points in two games against the Lakers this season, shooting 54.3% from the field.

While the Spurs have their point guard back, the Lakers await word on theirs. Derek Fisher sprained his left elbow in Friday night's win over Charlotte, but is listed as probable for Sunday's game. Fisher has played in 476 consecutive games, the longest active streak in the NBA.

For more news and information on today's game, be sure to read Silver Screen and Roll.

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