Thursday , Feb , 19 , 2004 C.Y. Ellis

Los Angeles Lakers Team Report – February 19

=== Los Angeles Lakers Team Report – February 19 ===

(Sports Network) – Shaquille O’Neal scored 31 points, grabbed 16 rebounds
and had a key blocked shot in the final seconds, as the Los Angeles Lakers
defeated the Golden State Warriors, 100-99, on Wednesday at The Arena.

Kobe Bryant poured in a game-high 35 points, including 24 in the second half,
and handed out eight assists for the Lakers, who have won four of their last
five games. Bryant and O’Neal combined for 40 of the Lakers’ 48 second-half
points.

Los Angeles led by four points after three, but increased its advantage to
90-83 on O’Neal’s layup with 7:18 remaining in the game. The Warriors, though,
trimmed the gap to 92-89 on Van Exel’s jump hook moments later.

After each team scored twice, Richardson made two free throws to bring Golden
State within 96-95 with 2:12 left. Each team then hit two jumpers and the
Laker lead was 100-99.

Leading 100-99, O’Neal was fouled with 1:03 remaining, but the All-Star missed
both attempts. The Warriors had a chance to claim the lead, but Jason
Richardson’s off- balance shot was off the mark and Rick Fox grabbed the
rebound.

Los Angeles tried to run the clock down, but Bryant was called for travelling
with 19.2 seconds left and the Warriors took over.

However, Nick Van Exel missed a runner in the lane, which would have put
Golden State on top, and LA’s Kareem Rush grabbed the miss with 3.9 seconds
left. Rush was then immediately fouled, but he missed both shots. However,
O’Neal snatched the rebound out of the air where he quickly threw up a shot
that was off the mark. Bryant then was able to get his hands on the loose
ball, but he stepped out of bounds with 1.3 seconds left.

Clifford Robinson had a chance to win it, but his turnaround jumpshot was
blocked by O’Neal as time expired.

Los Angeles, which will play 10 of its next 14 on the road, has won just six
of its last 18 away from home and is 12-15 as a visitor this season.

The Lakers will return to the court on Friday against the Philadelphia 76ers.

LAL