Los Angeles News
ANGELES—The Staples Center crowd of 18,997 may have been leaning towards the
purple and gold in the first showdown of the 2012-2013 season between the
Lakers and Clippers, but there were very few satisfied spectators on Friday
The Lakers were the home team but the Clippers (2-0) represented the city of Los Angeles by winning the battle 105-95. The bruised Lakers have now lost their 11th straight game including the preseason and are 0-3 to start the regular season.
The Clippers used an 18-5 run at the end of the third quarter to take a commanding 15-point lead. The Lakers cut that lead down to eight in the game’s final stanza but wasn’t enough to overcome the Clippers’ balanced attack.
The Lakers had no answer for Clippers guard Chris Paul as he led the way with 18 points and 15 assists. Power forward Blake Griffin added 15 points and 8 rebounds before fouling out and Caron Butler emerged in this young season, putting up 14 points. The Clippers bench, led by Jamal Crawford’s 21 points, continued to produce as well, outscoring the Lakers bench 46-16.
star Kobe Bryant provided the spark for his team by pouring in 40 points while
still being hampered by an injured foot.
Other than Bryant keeping them afloat, the Lakers struggled, turning the ball over 20 times. Guard Steve Nash sat out due to a contusion on his left leg he suffered against Portland on Wednesday night. Steve Blake started in his place and had just two assists before fouling out.
Center Dwight Howard found himself in foul trouble for the Lakers and only managed 13 points and 8 rebounds while Pau Gasol contributed 10 points and 14 rebounds. Friday night was the first of four matchups this season between the Clippers and Lakers.
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