[March 26, 2014]LOS ANGELES — Dealing with injuries
and heading for one of the worst finishes in franchise history, the Los
Angeles Lakers soothed their wounds for one night Tuesday.
Buoyed by a franchise-best 51-point outburst in the third
quarter, the Lakers routed the New York Knicks 127-96 at Staples
Reserve guard Xavier Henry scored 22 points to lead the Lakers past
the Knicks for the sixth consecutive time at Staples. The result
also hurt the Knicks' playoff hopes, as New York (29-42) fell three
games behind the idle Atlanta Hawks for the No. 8 spot in the
"We just hit shots," said Lakers forward Nick Young, who finished
with 20 points and shot 5-for-6 from 3-point range. "It felt good.
We all had a little rhythm, and we all were locked in."
Knicks center Tyson Chandler said he was "very shocked" by the
blowout, particularly since it occurred against the Lakers, who lost
four of their previous five games.
"I did not expect this coming in here," said Chandler, who had 12
points and five rebounds. "I expected us to score a lot of points,
but I expected us to slow them down at some point. But that was
never the case. Fifty-one points. They had 87 points in two quarters
if you add the second and third. It was a bad defensive night for
Henry, who opted to forgo season-ending surgery to repair a torn
ligament in his left wrist, hit eight of 11 attempts from the floor.
"I know how much it hurts, but I know I can get through it in a
game," said Henry, who made three of four 3-point attempts. "My
wrist just has to warm up. That's the only thing. Once I get warm,
Los Angeles forward Kent Bazemore finished with 18 points, guard
Jodie Meeks scored 14, and center Chris Kaman chipped in 13 points
and nine rebounds.
Forward Carmelo Anthony led the Knicks with 29 points and nine
rebounds. Guard Tim Hardaway Jr. added 17 points for New York, and
forward Amar'e Stoudemire scored 16.
"It's very disappointing just from the fact that I don't think we
competed tonight," Anthony said.
The Los Angeles bench outscored New York's reserves 82-21.
The Lakers (24-46) prevailed despite playing without center Pau
Gasol, who missed the game due to vertigo. Gasol came down with the
illness during the first half of Sunday's win over the Orlando
The 51 points in the third — the most ever allowed by the Knicks in
a quarter — helped balloon the Lakers' lead to 101-73 at the end of
the period. The record output broke the previous mark of 49 points
in a quarter accomplished twice: in 1972 against the Golden State
Warriors and in 1966 against the Chicago Bulls.
"It went downhill from there," Anthony said. "I don't think you can
win a game giving up 80-something points in two quarters, and that
was the case tonight."
After trailing 22-14 after one quarter, Los Angeles turned its
fortunes around in a big way.
The Lakers made a sizzling 75 percent (15 of 20) of their shots in
the second quarter. They led 50-42 at intermission before pounding
the Knicks into submission in the third quarter.
The Lakers shot 73.1 percent (19 of 26) in the third, compared to
57.1 percent (12 of 21) for New York, which scored 31 points in the
The Lakers connected on 18 of 28 (64.3 percent) from behind the arc
for the game. They were one 3-pointer shy of their club record. New
York went 4-for-15 (26.7 percent) on treys.
Former Lakers coach and new Knicks president Phil Jackson watched
the game from a suite. Metta World Peace, who played with both
clubs, also was in attendance.
NOTES: If Mike D'Antoni returns as the Lakers' coach next season,
don't expect C Chris Kaman to come back with him. For starters,
Kaman said he was unaware he was starting Tuesday until he glanced
at a lineup card 90 minutes before tip-off. Kaman said D'Antoni
never mentioned it. Kaman added that he and D'Antoni haven't spoken
in three weeks. However, that didn't stop Kaman from speaking his
mind before the game. "I think the players know how to play a little
if they were given enough guidance from the beginning," Kaman said.
... Los Angeles shot 27.8 percent in the first quarter, compared to
39.1 percent for New York. ... The Knicks resume their five-game
West Coast swing against the Sacramento Kings on Wednesday. ...
Injured PG Steve Nash will accompany the Lakers when they visit the
Milwaukee Bucks on Thursday and the Minnesota Timberwolves on Friday
before returning home to face the Phoenix Suns on Sunday.