Maybe the best way to describe the Los Angeles Lakers performance against the New Orleans Hornets on Friday night could be summed up by a line from the old Steely Dan hit FM: “No Static At All.” The Lakers went down to New Orleans Arena and easily handled the Hornets in game three of their first round Western Conference series defeating them by a final margin of 100-86 to take a 2-1 lead in the best of seven series. Kobe Bryant scored a game high 30 points while both Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum racked up double-doubles in the contest. Carl Landry led the way for New Orleans with 23 points while Chris Paul chipped in 22 points in the club’s second straight loss.
Los Angeles got off to a very strong start during the first 12 minutes of play in the contest. Lamar Odom hit a shot five feet from the basket with four seconds left in the period and was fouled on the play. After hitting his shot at the line his team held the advantage at 30-23 as the quarter concluded. Bynum would knock down a pair at the charity stripe with nine seconds remaining in the second and as the two teams went to their locker rooms as the game reached the half the Lakers were on top 51-42.
The Hornets would actually out score their opponents in the third but they would make up far too little ground as they trailed 75-68 heading into the fourth. They would get to within five points in the final quarter but never could get any closer as Los Angeles handily won the game.
Bryant knocked down 30 points, 6 rebounds, 3 steals, 2 assists and a block in the Lakers victory. Gasol had 17 points, 10 rebounds, 4 assists and 1 block while Bynum would have 14 points and 11 rebounds. Odom came off the bench with 13 points, 9 rebounds and 2 assists while Derek Fisher added 10 points, 5 assists, 3 steals and 1 rebound.
Landry scored 23 points and had 5 rebounds while Paul put up 22 points, 8 assists, 5 rebounds and 2 steals. Emeka Okafor had 15 points, 8 rebounds and 1 block while Trevor Ariza had a double-double with 12 points, 12 rebounds, 4 steals, 3 assists and 2 blocks. Los Angeles takes a 2-1 series lead and the two teams will match-up again on Sunday in New Orleans.