Clippers send Lakers to 0-3 start with 105-95 win
LOS ANGELES (AP) The star-studded Los Angeles Lakers are off to their first 0-3 start in 34 years after a thrashing from the Los Angeles Clippers, whose younger stars are shining a whole lot brighter so far.
So, Kobe Bryant, when is it time to push the panic button on this grand experiment?
"Now," he said.
Chris Paul had 18 points and 15 assists, Jamal Crawford scored 21 points and the Clippers beat the Lakers 105-95 Friday night to keep their Staples Center co-tenants winless.
Bryant later said he was only joking about that panic button, but it's tough not to worry about a team that still hasn't walked off any court together with a victory.
Bryant scored 40 points and Dwight Howard had 13 points and eight rebounds while battling constant foul trouble for the Lakers, who are 0-3 for just the fourth time in franchise history. Steve Nash sat out with a bruised left leg for the Lakers, who have followed up their 0-8 preseason with three losses in four days.
"We need a win, obviously," Lakers coach Mike Brown said. "I'm not trying to fool anyone here. That's part of the reason Kobe played the minutes he played, which is too many."
Bryant logged 43 minutes on his bruised foot. While soaking it in ice after the game, he said it "felt like it's about to fall off."
"We're not supposed to coast and assume things are going to fix themselves," Bryant said. "You've got to push at it. We've just got to keep working on what we do."
The Clippers are no strangers to franchise turmoil, yet they coolly snapped a nine-game "road" losing streak against the Lakers dating to April 12, 2007. Blake Griffin scored 15 points before fouling out and Caron Butler had 14 for the Clippers, who pulled away steadily in the second half.
Just don't try to tell the Clippers that they're the new kings of L.A.
"I think it's the second game of the year, and you've got two teams here that just got together," Clippers coach Vinny Del Negro said. "It's too early to tell anything yet, other than we have to keep getting better."
While the Clippers celebrated, the pro-Lakers crowd reacted to another loss with angry shouts piercing the silence, much of it profane criticism of Brown and his new Princeton-based offense.
Bryant attempted to put the Lakers on his shoulders in the second half, scoring 26 points out of sets that resembled the Lakers' old offenses, but the Clippers stayed comfortably ahead with big second halves from Paul and Griffin.
"We're getting better as a team," Griffin said. "It's a great win for us, because they're a great team and they're in our division. I think the biggest difference in these games now ... is when we used to run out that tunnel for the starting lineups, nobody used to boo us. They didn't really care. And now they throw heat a little bit. So I think that says a lot about where we're at."
Nash's absence was only one reason Paul had the same number of assists as the Lakers, with Nash replacement Steve Blake managing just two assists in 38 minutes before fouling out in the final minute.
The Clippers pulled away in the third quarter, making an 18-5 run with nine points from Griffin to take an 82-67 lead into the fourth quarter. The Lakers trimmed it to 91-83 with 5 minutes to play, but Crawford and Matt Barnes kept the Clippers ahead with big buckets.
"The key was that we weathered the storm," Paul said. "We had a lead going into the fourth, and then Kobe started being Kobe. I've played against the Lakers enough times to see him get like that and have them come back and win. But we got some timely shots from our bench, and they stepped up for us."
Bryant became the Lakers' career steals leader with his 1,725th in the third quarter, passing Magic Johnson. But the Lakers' defense was largely ineffective against Paul, and the Clippers forced 20 Lakers turnovers.
While the Lakers seem headed for growing pains this autumn as they integrate their two new stars into the lineup, the Clippers appear ready to make a run at their rivals' supremacy in the next several months.
The Clippers are frequently saddled with rough November schedules that make it tough to get off to a fast start, but everything has changed this year. They'll only leave Los Angeles for one game before Nov. 19, playing seven of their first eight at Staples Center.
Meanwhile, the Lakers have caught few breaks since training camp opened with Howard still recovering from offseason back surgery. Nash's absence is just the latest obstacle after he was hurt in the first half of the Lakers' loss at Portland on Wednesday night in a collision with rookie Damian Lillard.
Just three games into his three-year contract with Los Angeles, the two-time MVP had to sit out. Brown doesn't know whether Nash will play in Sunday's home game against Detroit.
NOTES: Bryant moved past Johnson into 15th place on the NBA's career steals list. Isiah Thomas is 14th with 1,861. ... Clippers C DeAndre Jordan threw down a stunning putback dunk in the third quarter, barely throwing down a rebound before falling onto his back. Jordan scored just four points. ... Barry Diller, Diane Von Furstenberg and directors Kevin Smith, James L. Brooks and Adam McKay attended the game.
Updated November 3, 2012
In the latest edition of the "It Is What It Is" podcast, Chris Price and CSNNE's Mike Giardi take a look at the Patriots offseason on both sides of the ball, try and get a handle on which new guys will make an impact first, and whether or not the Patriots have altered their style when it comes to drafting and developing wide receivers.
Mike Florio joined the program to discuss the Jets decision to release Tim Tebow, he said the situation is as disaster all around for the Jets and that the problems begins with owner Woody Johnson. Mike also said that he was disappointed with the Pats moving back in the first round.
One of the hardest working men in the biz, Mike Petraglia aka "Trags", sits down with Butch Stearns live in Foxborough to help break down all the latest Pats moves. He discusses his reaction to the trade in Round 1 and the guys those picks produced. Also, the boys talk about the decent trade the Pats made in acquiring LeGarrette Blount from Tampa Bay for Jeff Demps and a 7th rounder.
We check in with Danny Ainge for our first talk to him since the Celtics season ended last weekend. We talk about the future of the team, KG, Pierce, Doc Rivers and more, as Danny directly answers the rumors being floated by ESPN's Stephen A. Smith.
Jackie Mac joins the show to discuss the trade rumors swirling around Paul Pierce, KG, Doc Rivers and the Celtics. She also discusses the future of the Celtics head coach.
Stephen A. joined the program to discuss the trade rumors he has reported regarding a possible trade including Doc Rivers and the Clippers. Stephen A. also told the guys that he has heard that Danny and Doc may be tiring of working together.
Dave O'Brien talked to John Farrell before the end of the Twins series. The Sox skipper said that Big Papi's success is no surprise given his work ethic.
John Farrell postgame press conference
Joe Castiglione and Dave O'Brien talked to David Ortiz after the Red Sox beat the Twins 12-5. Big Papi said that team chemistry is great, that the new guys see the Sox way of doing things.
Dale and DJ roll on with their puck talk and chat some more about the goalie matchup in this series, as well as the lack of a quality power play for both of these teams. In fact, DJ says the Rangers are even worse on the PP than the B’s! The guys also get into the resurgence of Milan Lucic and his deceptive speed and grit. Dale and DJ talk about the similar styles of play for these teams and look forward to Game 2.
Dale and DJ get into the two coaches and their polar opposite styles and demeanor. Both teams play a similar style, but the coaches certainly convey their messages in a different way. Dale isn't buying the Tortorella hype and thinks he's a little overrated. DJ thinks he's a good coach, but isn't a fan of anti-media stance. The guys also talk about Jagr and how he has not lived up to the hype. They weren't expecting him to light it up or be the savior, but DJ says he wasn't prepared for just how slow the aging veteran is. Another big topic for B's fans this season is the play of Tyler Seguin and why he has yet to become the superstar everyone anticipates he will be. This leads to Claude Julien's style and if he does actually have something against the younger players. That Iginla trade shows its ugly head again as well.
WEEI.com's DJ Bean joins Dale in studio for Sports Sunday to discuss the Bruins playoff run. Game 2 is later today and the guys discuss the results of the first game of the series. They get into the construction of the lines for the B's and if they would make any changes. DJ has a few ideas for the lines today. The boys also discuss the two goalies - Tuukka vs Henrik Lundqvist and wonder why people automatically think the Rangers have the edge at goalie. Finally, they get into the legacy and the decisions of Claude Julien and Peter Chiarelli.
Shawn joined the program to discuss another overtime win for the Bruins. When asked about Game 7 against Toronto, Thornton said that he would like to keep his specific comments in the dressing room private, but acknowledged that he encouraged Tyler Seguin to up his play and it paid off in overtime.
Barry joined the guys to help breakdown the Bruins overtime win last night in game one. Barry said that he has rarely seen a team dominate as much as the Bruins yet be forced to an overtime.
Boomer joined the program to discuss the tough loss for his beloved Rangers. Boomer told the guys that Lundqvist will be better in game two and predicted a seven game series.
Bruins rookie defenseman Matt Bartkowski has emerged as one of the young stars of the team and he joins Mut and Tom Caron to discuss his role on the team, why he's confident, and the trade that almost sent him to Calgary.
Millar joins the show to discuss the recent Sox slide, Jacoby Ellsbury's lack of power, and hitting in the big leagues.
Andy Brickley joins the show to discuss the Bruins Game 1 win over the Rangers, the play of the three young Bruins defensemen, and the fatigue Jagr has shown on the ice.
We talk all things game one with Jack Edwards of NESN, and get to hear a little from Jack's Finnish protege as well.
We tackle four topics we haven't yet touched upon today.. Joe Thornton and disappointing former Boston athletes, parking in Boston, buying jersey numbers and more...
We talk about the report that Rob Gronkowski may now be a candidate for back surgery with a disc problem. Is Gronk just an injury prone guy? Or is he not rehabbing proberly? Can the Pats build an offense around a guy who is so inconsistently on the field? We discuss.
The Bruins have almost finished raking the Leafs, the Red Sox struggle from the mound, Miami Heat fans show their level of class.
Daily Planet Wednesday May 8th
Today on the Daily Planet the Bruins take a 2-1 series lead, the Red Sox get a run-off win, and we hear about cannibals and bible thieves.
Sounds like a prostate exam to me!
Damn New Yorkers!
Sauce Man stylings!
Buster Olney joins the show to discuss the muddled AL East, the average play of Ellsbury and how that will affect him in free agency, and Tropicana Field.More from this show
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Jeff Bauman, a victim of the Boston Marathon bombing, joined the show to give the guys an update of his condition and a first-hand account of that terrible day. Jeff told the guys how he wrote the description of the bomber as soon as he could. Mr. Bauman added that he is aided every day with the knowledge that he is alive and the terrorist that detonated the bomb is dead.More from this show
Boomer joined the program to discuss the tough loss for his beloved Rangers. Boomer told the guys that Lundqvist will be better in game two and predicted a seven game series.More from this show