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NBA -- Thunder escape L.A. with 104-103 decision


PhilBoxing.com




LOS ANGELES - Kobe Bryant missed a tightly contested 17-foot jumper with two seconds left to play and the Oklahoma City Thunder escaped with a 104-103 decision on Friday night at Staples Center.

"I didn't have my legs tonight. It was pretty frustrating," said Bryant, who finished with nine points, eight rebounds and eight assists but missed 12 of his 15 field goals.

With Bryant struggling, much of the Lakers offense was supplied by Ed Davis, who had 18 and nine rebounds. Ronnie Price and Carlos Boozer each had 14 while Jeremy Lin finished with 12, including a 15-foot jumper that moved the Lakers to within 104-103 with only 32 ticks left in the close contest.

The Thunder won their eighth game in nine outings and they beat the Lakers without reigning MVP Kevin Durant, who missed the start due to a sprained ankle sustained in OKC's loss to the Warriors on Thursday night.

Russell Westbrook stepped up in Durant's absence and poured in 31 points and 10 assists. Reggie Jackson exploded for 25 while Serge Ibaka registered 16 and seven rebounds.

"We did a lot of good things tonight. We had opportunities to defend and everybody stepped up. We have a team full of defenders and everyone has to do their job," Thunder head coach Scott Brooks told reporters at his post-game press conference.

The Thunder improved to 13-14 while the Lakers dropped to 8-18. (MR)

Photo: Kobe Bryant struggled mightily in LA's tough 104-103 loss to the OKC Thunder at Staples Center. Kobe missed 12 of 15 shots, including a potential game-winner with two seconds left to play.


Click here to view a list of other articles written by Mohan Labra Ramchandani.


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