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Lakers Standing Tall Again

Updated: March 5, 2012, 2:09 PM ET
By J.A. Adande | ESPN.com

LOS ANGELES -- It didn't come down to Dwyane Wade versus Kobe Bryant's nose or LeBron James confronting his fourth-quarter demons or any other expected showdowns.

This Lakers victory over the Heat -- and the cause for newfound optimism among the Lakers -- was born of such unexpected things as Metta World Peace scoring 17 points, and Andrew Goudelock scoring more points than LeBron, Wade or any other Heat player in the second quarter, and Pau Gasol playing the role of tough guy, stepping ...

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