Andrew Bynum dominates 76ers

January 5, 2008 6:56:48 AM PST
The Los Angeles Lakers didn't make all their shots. It just seemed that way.

The Lakers recorded their best shooting percentage in more than 23 years when they went 47-of-72 from the floor (66.2 percent) Friday night in a 124-93 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers.

On Nov. 11, 1984, the Lakers shot 67.8 percent in a 130-108 victory over Houston.

"I enjoy these games because it helps build momentum," Kobe Bryant said.

Los Angeles' accurate shooting was tops in NBA this season. Dallas shot 65.2 percent in a 21-point victory over Sacramento on Nov. 3.

Andrew Bynum dominated inside with 17 points, a career-high 16 rebounds and three blocks to lead the Lakers, going 6-of-8 from the field. Rookie Javaris Crittenton came off the bench to score a career-best 19 points on 7-of-9 shooting, Derek Fisher went 7-of-12 for 17 points, and reserve Jordan Farmar was 7-of-10 for 16 points.

"We moved the ball, we ran the offense better and we definitely defended better tonight," Bynum said.

Ronny Turiaf, starting because Lamar Odom was serving a one-game suspension, had 15 points and five blocked shots. Bryant, content to let his teammates do the scoring, finished with 15 points on 5-of-9 shooting.

"We had a team that had trouble shooting the ball tonight. We shot it well," Lakers coach Phil Jackson said.

Jackson said the Lakers got off to a fast start, helped "immensely by Ronny and Andrew. They plugged the middle, got some blocked shots and ignited our game."

Lakers reserves got a lot of playing time because Los Angeles opened a lopsided lead in the second quarter and remained comfortably in front.

The game was the fifth of a six-game trip for the 76ers, who looked weary.

Louis Williams led Philadelphia with 17 points. Fellow reserve Thaddeus Young had 16, and Andre Iguodala 15.

Philadelphia coach Maurice Cheeks said being road-weary wasn't the problem; Bynum and Turiaf were.

"No excuses about the long trip and things like that; they were just better from start to finish," Cheeks said. "I thought those two guys set the tone of the game, the way they controlled the interior of the paint, blocking shots.

"Putting the ball in their hands, particularly Bynum on the offensive end, the way he scored at will. I think they shot 30-plus layups, and anytime we give up 30-plus layups, we're going to be in trouble."

Iguodala complimented Bynum's performance, saying, "He scored in a variety of ways in the post - left shoulder, right shoulder. He showed a lot of potential tonight."

Bynum scored 27 points and pulled down 11 rebounds in the Lakers' 106-101 win at Philadelphia on Dec. 21.

The Lakers were coming off a 110-91 loss to Boston on Sunday that was their worst home defeat of the season. But they have won five of six overall and 11 of 14.

Los Angeles opened a 61-36 lead on Fisher's 3-pointer 1:53 before halftime, and the Lakers were up 62-40 at the break. Los Angeles extended the lead to as many as 34 points in the third quarter, and reserves played most of the fourth for both teams.

Odom, the Lakers' second-leading scorer (14.1 points per game) and rebounder (8.9), was suspended without pay by the NBA for committing a flagrant foul against Boston's Ray Allen on Sunday.

Notes: Los Angeles F Vladimir Radmanovic was sidelined by a sprained right ankle, hurt in practice a day earlier. ... In Philadelphia's most recent win over the Lakers, a 108-92 victory on March 9, Iguodala had 31 points and eight rebounds. ... The 76ers conclude their six-game swing against Western Conference teams in Denver on Sunday night. Philadelphia is 2-3 on the trip.