But even with Dwight, the Lakers were still a bad 17-25 going into this game against Utah Jazz. Did they finally get some semblance of good basketball going? Let’s check out the recap of their game against the Jazz at Staples Center.
The Lakers started out really well with Metta World Peace making a three and Dwight Howard making a good dunk. What?
The guys in purple and gold got off to a fantastic start. Two Dwight Howard alley-oops and one Nash three helped the Lakers get off to a 12-2 start.
This is the team we all thought we’d see from the beginning
— Mark Medina (@MedinaLakersNBA) January 26, 2013
Oh, yeah. Like I said, there were two alley-oop dunks for Dwight.
The Jazz went on a 9-0 run to cut the lead down to 15-13. But Dwight Howard continued to be active, Nash was making shots, and Kobe even got a breakaway dunk.
At the end of the first quarter, the Lakers led, 26-19. Dwight Howard had an active eight points and six rebounds.
There was a Jodie Meeks sighting! He actually made a three-pointer early in the second quarter. Of course, he would follow with one of his hilarious, out-of-control drives.
— Ben R. (@BALLAH_Benji) January 26, 2013
The Jazz were able to cut the lead down to 33-29. After that, neither team scored for nearly three minutes before Metta World Peace made two free throws.
Kobe started looking for his offense more…
but continued facilitating as he got Antawn Jamison (who was also found alive, apparently) involved. They were able to get the lead up to double digits.
Dwight Howard had 10 boards and Kobe Bryant dished out seven dimes in the first half. This was one of their better first halfs in quite some time as the Lakers led, 47-37.
It was nice to see the Lakers play some defense as they held the Jazz scoreless for a three-minute period. We finally saw some facilitating by Steve Nash, who had no assists in the first half.
But the Lakers went cold in the latter part of the second half. The Jazz took advantage as the Lakers got a little sloppy on the offensive end. Utah went on an 8-2 run to cut the lead down to 61-56. Even though Nash was shooting plenty in this game, Kobe continued to urge Nash…
A very loud and clear message from Kobe to Nash. “SHOOT IT!!!”
— The LakeShow PH (@LakeShowPH) January 26, 2013
Defensive breakdowns started to appear. They allowed a Derrick Favors alley-oop. But Chris Duhon made his first basket (a three-pointer) and it couldn’t be more timely.
Kobe continued to facilitate and Metta World Peace and Jodie Meeks were recipients. Ron made two three-pointers and Meeks made a dunk. Kobe was really looking for his teammates and it was nice to see.
And more good news was that the Lakers continued to kill Utah on the boards. At the end of three, the Lakers led, 72-63.
A funny thing happened in the fourth quarter. The Lakers couldn’t miss. Starting from the end of the third quarter, the Lakers made ten straight field goals. Pau Gasol was swooping to the hoop. Chris Duhon was making lay-ups. Jodie Meeks was making lay-ups. It was like bizarro world or something.
I don’t even make layups with Meeks in 2K13
— Louie Chen (@LOOOeee) January 26, 2013
We “Pau Gasol” or as I like to call him… “Feather Gasol” justwant him 2 play 2 his full capabilities!
— Tanya (@teacrock) January 26, 2013
Kobe then made back-to-back baskets that seemingly killed the spirit of the Jazz. First, he used his footwork to get away from Gordon Hayward for a lay-up. And then he made a dunk on a fast break. That was pretty much the game.
Lakers beat the Jazz going away, 102-84.
POINTS: Dwight Howard, Metta World Peace, 17
REBOUNDS: Dwight Howard, 13
ASSISTS: Kobe Bryant, 12
BLOCKS: Dwight Howard, 2
STEALS: Kobe Bryant, 3