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NBA FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL --- --- --- --- ----- LA LAKERS 25 34 29 30 118 DENVER 23 27 32 26 108 FINAL

HIGH SCORERS: LAL - SHAQUILLE ONEAL 40, KOBE BRYANT 22, GLEN RICE 20 DEN - CHRIS GATLING 25, KEON CLARK 18, NICK VAN EXEL 17

HIGH REBOUND: LAL - SHAQUILLE ONEAL 9, KOBE BRYANT 9 DEN - CHRIS GATLING 10, RAEF LAFRENTZ 8

HIGH ASSISTS: LAL - SHAQUILLE ONEAL 7, TWO PLAYERS WITH 5 DEN - NICK VAN EXEL 15, THREE PLAYERS WITH 2

ATT: 19,099


Extended Box

LA LAKERS (118) AT DENVER (108)

LA LAKERS REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

GREEN F 15 1-3 0-0 1 4 5 0 1 0 0 2 RICE F 33 6-13 6-6 0 3 3 3 2 1 0 20 ONEAL C 44 14-20 12-16 3 6 9 7 3 0 4 40 BRYANT G 43 8-20 6-8 2 7 9 5 4 1 1 22 HARPER G 14 1-3 3-4 2 3 5 1 1 1 2 5 SHAW 23 5-6 1-1 0 5 5 5 0 0 1 14 HORRY 32 2-3 0-0 1 4 5 1 4 1 2 5 KNIGHT 6 0-2 0-0 1 1 2 0 2 0 0 0 FOX 13 1-5 2-2 0 1 1 0 5 0 0 4 FISHER 16 3-5 0-0 1 2 3 3 4 1 2 6 GEORGE 1 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 SALLEY DNP - COACH'S DECISION

TOTALS 240 41-80 30-37 11 36 47 25 26 5 12 118 (.513) (.811) TEAM REBS: 8 TOTAL TO: 12(10 PTS)

DENVER REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

CLARK F 39 7-14 4-4 2 5 7 0 3 0 1 18 MCDYESS F 31 8-15 0-0 1 1 2 2 6 0 2 16 LAFRENTZ C 35 2-9 0-0 3 5 8 2 4 0 1 6 POSEY G 40 5-13 4-4 2 1 3 2 4 2 1 14 VAN EXEL G 35 7-16 1-1 0 2 2 15 1 2 2 17 GATLING 26 6-13 11-13 2 8 10 0 4 1 0 25 BOWEN 16 0-1 0-0 2 0 2 0 2 1 0 0 JONES 5 0-1 0-0 0 1 1 1 1 0 0 0 C HERREN 13 4-6 3-5 0 1 1 1 3 0 3 12 ABDUL-WAHAD DNP - SPRAINED LEFT WRIST ALEXANDER DNP - COACH'S DECISION MCCLOUD DNP - SUSPENDED BY LEAGUE

TOTALS 240 39-88 23-27 12 24 36 23 28 6 10 108 (.443) (.852) TEAM REBS: 8 TOTAL TO: 11(12 PTS)

LA LAKERS 25 34 29 30 - 118 DENVER 23 27 32 26 - 108

BLOCKED SHOTS: LA LAKERS - ONEAL, KNIGHT. DENVER - LAFRENTZ 2, CLARK. 3-PT. FIELD GOALS: LA LAKERS 6-12 (.500), RICE 2-2, BRYANT 0-3, SHAW 3-3, HORRY 1-2, FOX 0-2. DENVER 7-16 (.438), LAFRENTZ 2-4, POSEY 0-2, VAN EXEL 2-5, GATLING 2-3, JONES 0-1, C HERREN 1-1. TECHNICALS: LA LAKERS - ILLEGAL DEFENSE, ASSISTANT COACH HAMBLEN. OFFICIALS: BERNIE FRYER, TED BERNHARDT, LEON WOOD. A - 19,099. T - 2:17.


Box Score

LA LAKERS (118) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Green 15 1-3 0-0 1-5 0 1 2 Rice 33 6-13 6-6 0-3 3 2 20 Oneal 44 14-20 12-16 3-9 7 3 40 Bryant 43 8-20 6-8 2-9 5 4 22 Harper 14 1-3 3-4 2-5 1 1 5 Shaw 23 5-6 1-1 0-5 5 0 14 Horry 32 2-3 0-0 1-5 1 4 5 Knight 6 0-2 0-0 1-2 0 2 0 Fox 13 1-5 2-2 0-1 0 5 4 Fisher 16 3-5 0-0 1-3 3 4 6 George 1 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 Salley DNP - coach's decision _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 41-80 30-37 11-47 25 26 118 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.513, FT-.811. 3-Point Goals: 6-12, .500 (Rice 2-2, Bryant 0-3, Shaw 3-3, Horry 1-2, Fox 0-2). Team rebounds: 8. Blocked shots: 2 (Oneal, Knight). Turnovers: 12 (Oneal 4, Fisher 2, Harper 2, Horry 2, Bryant, Shaw). Steals: 5 (Bryant, Fisher, Harper, Horry, Rice).

DENVER (108) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Clark 39 7-14 4-4 2-7 0 3 18 Mcdyess 31 8-15 0-0 1-2 2 6 16 Lafrentz 35 2-9 0-0 3-8 2 4 6 Posey 40 5-13 4-4 2-3 2 4 14 Van Exel 35 7-16 1-1 0-2 15 1 17 Gatling 26 6-13 11-13 2-10 0 4 25 Bowen 16 0-1 0-0 2-2 0 2 0 Jones 5 0-1 0-0 0-1 1 1 0 C Herren 13 4-6 3-5 0-1 1 3 12 Abdul-wahad DNP - sprained left wrist Alexander DNP - coach's decision Mccloud DNP - suspended by league _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 39-88 23-27 12-36 23 28 108 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.443, FT-.852. 3-Point Goals: 7-16, .438 (Lafrentz 2-4, Posey 0-2, Van Exel 2-5, Gatling 2-3, Jones 0-1, C Herren 1-1). Team rebounds: 8. Blocked shots: 3 (Lafrentz 2, Clark). Turnovers: 11 (C Herren 3, Mcdyess 2, Van Exel 2, Clark, Lafrentz, Posey). Steals: 6 (Posey 2, Van Exel 2, Bowen, Gatling). ____________________________________________ La Lakers 25 34 29 30 - 118 Denver 23 27 32 26 - 108 ____________________________________________ Technical fouls: La Lakers 2 (Illegal Defense, 2:02 3rd; Assistant Coach Hamblen, 0:23 3rd). Flagrant fouls: None. A: 19,099. T: 2:17. Officials: Bernie Fryer, Ted Bernhardt, Leon Wood.


Game Story

DENVER (Ticker) -- Comparisons are becoming inevitable.

Shaquille O'Neal just missed a triple-double with 40 points, nine rebounds and seven assists and Kobe Bryant had 22 points and nine rebounds as the Los Angeles Lakers posted their 19th straight victory, a 118-108 triumph over the Denver Nuggets.

The winning streak is just one shy of the 1970-71 Milwaukee Bucks for second longest in NBA history. The longest is 33, a feat accomplished by the 1971-72 Lakers, a team that this current Los Angeles squad is quickly becoming associated with.

"We're not getting excited about the streak," Bryant said. "We're just playing. ... Every game we win in the winning streak, teams will come out with more intensity against us."

"It's a special thing to win 19 in a row," Lakers coach Phil Jackson said. "We're very proud of it."

This team, which put together a 16-game run from December 11-January 12, has not lost since February 1. It has reeled off 10 straight road wins and at 53-11 is 4 1/2 games ahead of Portland in the race for the NBA's best record.

That 1971-72 squad went 69-13 and won the NBA title. While this team would have to go 16-2 down the stretch to match, the current Lakers are solidifying their status as the team to beat.

"We are not worried about the streak," O'Neal said. "We just need to pick it up every night and especially down the stretch."

"The streak is nice and winning is nice but we need to focus on winning," Lakers forward Glen Rice said. "It feels good to win."

Chris Gatling had 25 poins and 10 rebounds for the Nuggets, who have lost six straight games, tying their longest losing stretch of the season. They also have lost five of seven at home.

"They have a lot of talented players," Nuggets coach Dan Issel said. "I thought we played real hard tonight. Everybody who played, played extremely hard. But right now we are not a match for them. And I don't think we are the Lone Ranger in that respect. They are the best team in the league right now."

O'Neal made 14-of-20 shots and 12-of-16 free throws. Over his last four games he is averaging 42 points and 16 rebounds. Bryant is averaging 28.5 points per contest over his last four.

"I was particularly pleased with the effort Shaq gave," Jackson said. "He played a great game for us."

"He's a big bully," Gatling said. "He bullies his way in there. ... He's one of the league's best players, if not the best. Unfortunately, he hits his shots against us."

O'Neal had nine points in the first quarter as the Lakers grabbed a 25-23 lead. They led 33-29 with 6:28 left when Derek Fisher sank a 19-footer to spark a 6-0 run.

O'Neal had a layup with 5:49 remaining before Fisher capped the spurt with a 20-footer that left Los Angeles with a 39-29 advantage. O'Neal had 13 in the quarter as the Lakers took a 59-50 lead at the break.

A free throw by Bryant left Los Angeles with a 67-60 lead with 7:49 to go in the third, but Raef LaFrentz buried a 3-pointer and former Laker Nick Van Exel had a driving layup.

The Nuggets got within 78-77 on a dunk by Antonio McDyess with 3:20 to go in the third before O'Neal and Bryant responded with layups and Rice sank two free thrwos for a seven-point cushion.

Los Angeles' lead was 88-82 entering the final quarter and on two occasions in the opening two minutes the Nuggets closed their deficit to a point. But they could never grab the lead and a jumper by Bryant and 3-pointer by Brian Shaw midway through the quarter sealed the victory.

Rookie Chris Herren had a career-high 12 points in 13 minutes off the bench. The Nuggets' bench already was short with Tariq Abdul-Wahad injured and George McCloud suspended one game by the league.

Denver has dropped three of four matchups against Los Angeles this season and is 2-13 in the last 15 meetings.

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