Final

Los Angeles wins series 4-1 (Game 2 of 5)

Los Angeles wins series 4-1

Game 1: Sunday, April 19th
Jazz100Final
Lakers113
Game 2: Tuesday, April 21st
Jazz109Final
Lakers119
Game 3: Thursday, April 23rd
Lakers86Final
Jazz88
Game 4: Saturday, April 25th
Lakers108Final
Jazz94
Game 5: Monday, April 27th
Jazz96Final
Lakers107

Jazz 109

(48-34, 15-26 away)

Lakers 119

(65-17, 36-5 home)

    Coverage: TNT

    10:30 PM ET, April 21, 2009

    STAPLES Center, Los Angeles, CA

    1 2 3 4 T
    UTAH 29 26 23 31109
    LAL 41 25 23 30119

    Top Performers

    Utah: D. Williams 35 Pts, 4 Reb, 9 Ast, 4 Stl, 2 Blk

    Los Angeles: K. Bryant 26 Pts, 6 Reb, 9 Ast, 2 Stl

    Kobe, Lakers hold off rallying Jazz to take 2-0 series lead

    Associated Press

    LOS ANGELES -- The Utah Jazz played better and it still didn't matter.

    Kobe Bryant scored 26 points, Pau Gasol added 22 and Lamar Odom had 19 off the bench in the Lakers' 119-109 victory over the Jazz on Tuesday night, giving Los Angeles a 2-0 lead in the best-of-7 first-round Western Conference playoff series.

    "We're not thinking about it being over at all," Bryant said. "We're thinking about Game 3."

    Fast Facts


    • The Lakers won their 11th straight game vs. the Jazz at Staples Center (including playoffs and regular season) and have now won 12 of their last 13 home playoff games overall.

    • The Lakers now own a 2-0 series lead, which is bad news for the Jazz. The Lakers are 37-1 all-time when winning Games 1 and 2 of a seven-game series.

    • The Lakers' 18-for-21 FG shooting in the first quarter is the best shooting quarter in the NBA playoffs since official play-by-play tracking began in 1998.

    -- ESPN Stats & Information

    The Lakers' Phil Jackson notched his 195th career postseason victory, the most of any coach in NBA history.

    "It was an offensive display, not always great ballhandling, but a lot of scoring," he said. "That was a trial out there and they threw some new things at us."

    But the Lakers handled the Jazz like they always have at Staples Center, sending Utah to its 11th consecutive loss, including playoff games.

    Deron Williams scored a career playoff-high 35 points and Carlos Boozer had 20 points and 10 rebounds for the Jazz, who head home for Game 3 on Thursday. They again played without injured center Mehmet Okur.

    "We played a lot better in Game 2 than we did in Game 1. We still got down by a lot early but we were able to fight back," Boozer said. "We had chances to win it in the fourth quarter. They just made plays."

    2009 NBA Playoffs

    Want an in-depth look at the playoffs? Check out all the matchups, analysis and opinion here:

    • Playoff pages

    The Lakers' shooting sizzled in the opening quarter, but they found themselves in a tight battle throughout much of the second half.

    "It's Deron Williams being a bad boy," Bryant said. "He kept them in the game and made plays."

    The Lakers stretched their lead to 96-81 early in the fourth. The Jazz relied mostly on Williams, and he scored six in a row to get his team to 105-99 with 5:22 remaining.

    Boozer scored five consecutive points to leave the Jazz trailing 109-106 with 3:18 to go. Odom's fastbreak layup kept the Lakers ahead 111-106, enough of a cushion to survive two missed free throws by Gasol.

    Bryant hit a 21-footer from the left corner and Trevor Ariza followed with a 3-pointer as the Lakers ended the game shooting 60 percent from the floor.

    "We are getting out there and starting great, and then they come back slowly but surely," said Andrew Bynum, who had a playoff career high of 10 points early for the Lakers. "We are going to have to change that."

    Utah closed within six points seven times in the third quarter when the Lakers came unglued offensively. Bryant missed several shots, Gasol got called for offensive basket interference and Derek Fisher committed three turnovers.

    Each time the Jazz threatened, though, the Lakers came up with a basket. In the final 2:27, Bryant scored six consecutive points and assisted on Shannon Brown's 3-pointer to send the Lakers into the fourth leading 89-78.

    "We were pretty confident, we had a little roll going," Williams said. "We just turned the ball over at the wrong time and it kind of led to a snowball effect. They made us pay."

    The Jazz cut their deficit to 49-43 midway through the second quarter on an 18-footer by C.J. Miles.

    But the Lakers answered with a 17-3 run to take their largest lead, 66-44, just as Bryant returned after starting the period on the bench. Brown hit a 3-pointer after Luke Walton scored off an offensive rebound of Brown's previous missed trey, and Bryant scored five in a row before Ariza capped the run with a 3-pointer.

    "At times we played very physical and made them work a little harder for their shots, made them work a little harder with their offense," Boozer said. "but we've got to do it for 48 minutes."

    Even the bounces went the Lakers' way. Odom's 3-pointer spun around in the cylinder before dropping in, and a free throw by Bryant hit the top of the backboard and dropped straight in.

    The Lakers weren't successful in stopping Williams' dribble penetration, allowing him to run off seven unanswered points that left the Jazz trailing 66-55 at halftime. Los Angeles shot 63 percent in the half, and the Jazz hit a respectable 60 percent.

    The Lakers shot a sizzling 86 percent in the opening quarter and took a 41-29 lead. As he did in Game 1, Bryant got his teammates involved first while he settled for a lone 3-pointer. He had seven of the Lakers' 14 assists in the first half.

    Game notes


    Bryant was called for a technical foul with 24 seconds left. ... The Lakers lost Games 3 and 4 at Utah in last season's conference semifinals before winning the series 4-2. ... Los Angeles is 3-7 in its last 10 regular season games in Salt Lake City. ... Jack Nicholson celebrated his 72nd birthday, standing to acknowledge the cheering crowd. Also attending were Dustin Hoffman, Justin Timberlake (who enveloped girlfriend Jessica Biel in a long kiss and embrace when the arena's kiss cam landed on them), Andy Garcia, Dyan Cannon, George Lopez and PGA golfer Anthony Kim, Michelle Kwan, Golden State's Corey Maggette and Maria Shriver.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

    SPONSORED HEADLINES

    Team Stat Comparison

     
    UTAH
    LAL
    Points 109 119
    FGM-FGA 39-79 (.494) 45-75 (.600)
    3PM-3PA 8-19 (.421) 11-20 (.550)
    FTM-FTA 23-29 (.793) 18-24 (.750)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 9-30 7-30
    Assists 25 33
    Turnovers 20 21
    Steals 13 8
    Blocks 6 6
    Fast Break Points 7 11
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 25 (0/0) 23 (1/0)
    Largest Lead 0 20

    Top Performers

    Utah
    Los Angeles
    Deron Williams Williams
    Points: 35
    Reb: 4
    Ast: 9
    Stl: 4
    Blk: 2
    Kobe Bryant Bryant
    Points: 26
    Reb: 6
    Ast: 9
    Stl: 2
    Blk: 0