If there has been a theme for the Los Angeles Lakers this week, it has been patience. The patience served the Lakers well tonight, as they overcame a 15-point first half deficit to defeat the Boston Celtics, 92-86 at TD Garden, giving the Lakers a much needed signature win on their season. Kobe Bryant scored 20 of his 23 points in the second half, and Pau Gasol put up 20 points and 10 rebounds in the win. The Lakers moved to 3-0 on their seven-game Grammy road trip, and got their first win against one of the top four teams in the NBA.
Before tonight, the Lakers were 0-5 against the Spurs, Celtics, Heat, and Mavericks, and have been linked in rumors to Carmelo Anthony of the Nuggets. However, the Lakers have denied any involvement in trade talks with Denver, especially since it would mean giving up center Andrew Bynum and change the dynamic of the Lakers. The Lakers used their size advantage against a depleted Celtics' front line, outrebounding Boston 47-36. Bynum had 16 points and nine boards in 34 minutes.
When the Lakers fell behind 49-34 in the second quarter, things looked bleak, but the Lakers were patient. They fed Gasol and Bynum down low, and the duo combined for 24 points to keep the Lakers close. They cut the lead to eight points at halftime, and within a few minutes of the third quarter, they grabbed the lead. The Lakers outscored Boston 27-15 in the third period, led by 12 points from Kobe.
Ray Allen in the first quarter passed Reggie Miller for most three-pointers made in NBA history. Allen, who ended the night with three shots from distance and 2,562 three-pointers made in his career, was congratulated by Miller, who was broadcasting the game for TNT, at courtside. The Lakers head to Madison Square Garden to battle the New York Knicks tomorrow night.
For more information on tonight's game, be sure to read Silver Screen and Roll.