The Los Angeles Lakers let yet another game slip away from them in this series, and lost to the Oklahoma City Thunder 103-100.
The Lakers took a 29-24 lead early on, behind 10 points apiece from Kobe Bryant and Andrew Bynum.
In the second, the Lakers maintained the pressure, and entered halftime with a 56-46 lead. Bryant had 16 points and four assists by halftime while Andrew Bynum had 14 points, seven rebounds, and four assists. However, Russell Westbrook kept the Thunder in the game with 14 points.
The third quarter was basically a wash, and the Lakers maintained a nine point lead going into the fourth quarter, staying up 80-71. Bryant had 15 points in the quarter, but Westbrook had 13 of his own to keep the Thunder close.
Led by Russell Westbrook, the Thunder came back against the Lakers late in the fourth quarter. Then, Kevin Durant took over at the very end and Kobe Bryant went cold. The Lakers blew another lead at the end of the game with a combination of poor execution down the stretch, and hot shooting by the Thunder. The Lakers lost, 103-100.
Kobe Bryant led the Lakers with 38 points, eight rebounds, and five assists. Andrew Bynum finished with 18 points, nine rebounds (five offensive), four assists, three blocks, and two steals while Metta World Peace put up 14 points, six rebounds, two steals, and two assists. Pau Gasol (five rebounds, two assists) and Ramon Sessions (five assists) scored 10 points apiece. Steve Blake (three rebounds), and Jordan Hill (seven rebounds, four offensive) each had five points.
For the Thunder, Russell Westbrook led the way with 37 points and five assists. Kevin Durant notched 31 points, 13 rebounds, two assists, and two steals. Serge Ibaka added 14 points, five blocks, and four rebounds. James Harden, who was hounded by Kobe most of the night, scored just 12 points (on 2-11 shooting) but grabbed six rebounds and dished out three assists. Derek Fisher chipped in with five points, and hit a key three-pointer down the stretch (did we expect anything less?). Thabo Sefolosha and Kendrick Perkins (nine rebounds, three blocks) scored two apiece.
Now, let’s break down the heartbreaking loss.
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