The Los Angeles Lakers open the 2011 NBA playoffs with a first-round matchup against the New Orleans Hornets. The Lakers had their way with the Hornets in two of the four matchups, and the Lakers were 4-0 on the season against New Orleans. Here is a look back to their four regular season games:
December 29 - Lakers 103, at New Orleans 88: The Lakers were playing perhaps their worst basketball of the season, with three consecutive losses by at least 15 points, including two at home. Andrew Bynum, who had come off the bench in his first seven games back from right knee surgery, was inserted into the starting lineup for the first time in this game. Bynum scored 18 points, and the Lakers shot 58.6% from the field and rolled to the win. Lamar Odom, in his first game off the bench, scored a team-high 24 points in the win.
January 7 - at Lakers 101, New Orleans 97: This was the third game of a seven-game winning streak for the Lakers, one of four separate winning streaks of seven games or longer by the Lakers this season. Kobe Bryant in this game passed Oscar Robertson for ninth place on the NBA All-Time Scoring List.
February 5 - Lakers 101, at New Orleans 95: The Lakers had lost three of four games, and this game was the first game of a seven-game road trip. The Lakers were led by 34 points and 10 rebounds by Pau Gasol in the win.
March 27 - at Lakers 102, New Orleans 84: Kobe scored 30, while Gasol scored 23 points and had 16 rebounds, as the Lakers at won their 15th game out of 16 in an easy win at Staples Center.
For more news on this first-round matchup, be sure to stay tuned to this story stream at SB Nation Los Angeles. For more NBA playoff coverage, check out SB Nation's playoff bracket and schedule. For more news and information on the Lakers, be sure to read the SB Nation blog Silver Screen and Roll.