Thursday , Mar , 03 , 2005 C.Y. Ellis

Los Angeles Lakers Team Report – March 3

=== Los Angeles Lakers Team Report – March 3 ===

(Sports Network) – The Los Angeles Lakers continued to struggle on Wednesday,
as Ricky Davis and Paul Pierce each scored 29 points to lead the Boston
Celtics to a 104-101 win over the Lakers at the FleetCenter.

Chucky Atkins had 29 points in Wednesday’s loss to lead the Lakers, who have
dropped a season-worst four in a row. All-Star Kobe Bryant added 26 points,
but missed a potential game-tying shot, as Los Angeles has dropped nine of its
last 13 contests overall.

Trailing 82-79 early in the final stanza, Boston went on a 13-3 run to open up
a 91-85 cushion. Pierce and Davis combined to score five points during the
burst, which was capped by an Al Jefferson free throw with 5:54 remaining.
Atkins then scored the next seven points for the Lakers, tying the game at
92-92 on a pair of free throws with 4:16 on the clock.

The two teams went back and forth for the next 1:17, until an Antoine Walker
layup started a 6-1 run that gave Boston the lead for good. Walker, Davis and
Pierce all hit from the field during the spurt, with Pierce ending it with a
jumper with 46 second left for a 102-97 edge.

Bryant had one last chance to tie the game as time expired, but his three-
point attempt bounced out and the Lakers ended a three-game road trip without
a victory.

The Lakers return to the Staples Center on Friday for the first of a three-
game homestand. LA will host the Dallas Mavericks in the opener of the stand.
On January 5th, the Mavericks beat the Lakers, 118-104, at American Airlines
Center. The teams will play twice more in the 2004-05 campaign, as the clubs
will meet on March 10th at Dallas and on April 17th at the Staples Center.

In the other two contests on the homestand, the Lakers will host the Indiana
Pacers on Sunday and the Clippers on March 8th.

Atkins has scored 22 or more points in his last three games. He is averaging
24.3 points and 2.3 assists in that span.

Bryant has netted 20 or more points in six straight contests. The seven-time
All-Star is averaging 26.5 points, 4.5 rebounds and 6.5 assists in those
games. He leads the Lakers in scoring (27.6 ppg) and assists (6.6 apg).