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NBA FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL --- --- --- --- ----- LA LAKERS 25 34 30 30 119 DALLAS 26 29 23 31 109 FINAL

HIGH SCORERS: LAL - SHAQUILLE ONEAL 29, RICK FOX 22, ISAIAH RIDER 20 DAL - STEVE NASH 31, DIRK NOWITZKI 25, MICHAEL FINLEY 22

HIGH REBOUND: LAL - HORACE GRANT 12, TWO PLAYERS WITH 11 DAL - DIRK NOWITZKI 8, CHRISTIAN LAETTNER 6

HIGH ASSISTS: LAL - KOBE BRYANT 7, ISAIAH RIDER 5 DAL - STEVE NASH 7, MICHAEL FINLEY 5

ATT: 18,287


Extended Box

LA LAKERS (119) AT DALLAS (109)

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

FOX F 36 8-12 4-4 1 10 11 2 3 2 0 22 GRANT F 27 2-7 4-4 5 7 12 3 3 0 0 8 ONEAL C 35 9-17 11-15 4 7 11 2 4 1 1 29 BRYANT G 40 5-16 9-10 1 5 6 7 3 1 3 19 RIDER G 31 8-14 4-6 1 3 4 5 3 0 1 20 MADSEN 10 1-1 1-1 1 1 2 1 2 0 1 3 PENBERTHY 26 4-9 0-0 1 3 4 2 0 1 2 11 HORRY 14 0-2 0-0 0 3 3 2 0 0 0 0 GEORGE 8 1-2 2-2 0 1 1 0 2 0 0 5 LUE 5 0-1 2-2 0 0 0 0 3 0 0 2 SHAW 8 0-1 0-0 1 0 1 2 0 0 0 0 FOSTER DNP - COACH'S DECISION

TOTALS 240 38-82 37-44 15 40 55 26 23 5 8 119 (.463) (.841) TEAM REBS: 7 TOTAL TO: 10(14 PTS)

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

FINLEY F 44 9-22 2-3 3 2 5 5 3 0 1 22 NOWITZKI F 41 10-18 3-3 1 7 8 0 3 1 1 25 LAETTNER C 28 4-7 1-2 1 5 6 2 4 0 0 9 EISLEY G 32 3-8 0-0 0 2 2 2 2 0 1 9 NASH G 37 10-22 8-10 0 3 3 7 3 0 1 31 DAVIS 21 4-6 0-0 0 2 2 1 5 0 2 10 VAUGHT 4 0-2 0-0 1 1 2 0 1 0 0 0 BRADLEY 12 1-5 0-0 0 1 1 0 3 1 0 2 BUCKNER 21 0-1 1-2 0 3 3 3 5 1 0 1 ALEXANDER DNP - COACH'S DECISION BRYANT DNP - COACH'S DECISION TRENT DNP - COACH'S DECISION

TOTALS 240 41-91 15-20 6 26 32 20 29 3 6 109 (.451) (.750) TEAM REBS: 12 TOTAL TO: 6(13 PTS)

LA LAKERS 25 34 30 30 - 119 DALLAS 26 29 23 31 - 109

BLOCKED SHOTS: LA LAKERS - ONEAL 2, FOX, BRYANT, GEORGE. DALLAS - LAETTNER 2, NOWITZKI 2, BRADLEY 2, BUCKNER. 3-PT. FIELD GOALS: LA LAKERS 6-12 (.500), FOX 2-4, PENBERTHY 3-5, HORRY 0-1, GEORGE 1-2. DALLAS 12-29 (.414), FINLEY 2-7, NOWITZKI 2-4, EISLEY 3-6, NASH 3-9, DAVIS 2-3. TECHNICALS: NONE. OFFICIALS: RON GARRETSON, JASON PHILLIPS, NOLAN FINE. A - 18,287. T - 2:24.


Box Score

LA LAKERS (119) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Fox 36 8-12 4-4 1-11 2 3 22 Grant 27 2-7 4-4 5-12 3 3 8 Oneal 35 9-17 11-15 4-11 2 4 29 Bryant 40 5-16 9-10 1-6 7 3 19 Rider 31 8-14 4-6 1-4 5 3 20 Madsen 10 1-1 1-1 1-2 1 2 3 Penberthy 26 4-9 0-0 1-4 2 0 11 Horry 14 0-2 0-0 0-3 2 0 0 George 8 1-2 2-2 0-1 0 2 5 Lue 5 0-1 2-2 0-0 0 3 2 Shaw 8 0-1 0-0 1-1 2 0 0 Foster DNP - coach's decision _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 38-82 37-44 15-55 26 23 119 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.463, FT-.841. 3-Point Goals: 6-12, .500 (Fox 2-4, Penberthy 3-5, Horry 0-1, George 1-2). Team rebounds: 7. Blocked shots: 5 (Oneal 2, Fox, Bryant, George). Turnovers: 10 (Bryant 3, Penberthy 2, Madsen, Oneal, Rider). Steals: 5 (Fox 2, Bryant, Oneal, Penberthy).

DALLAS (109) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Finley 44 9-22 2-3 3-5 5 3 22 Nowitzki 41 10-18 3-3 1-8 0 3 25 Laettner 28 4-7 1-2 1-6 2 4 9 Eisley 32 3-8 0-0 0-2 2 2 9 Nash 37 10-22 8-10 0-3 7 3 31 Davis 21 4-6 0-0 0-2 1 5 10 Vaught 4 0-2 0-0 1-2 0 1 0 Bradley 12 1-5 0-0 0-1 0 3 2 Buckner 21 0-1 1-2 0-3 3 5 1 Alexander DNP - coach's decision Bryant DNP - coach's decision Trent DNP - coach's decision _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 41-91 15-20 6-32 20 29 109 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.451, FT-.750. 3-Point Goals: 12-29, .414 (Finley 2-7, Nowitzki 2-4, Eisley 3-6, Nash 3-9, Davis 2-3). Team rebounds: 12. Blocked shots: 7 (Laettner 2, Nowitzki 2, Bradley 2, Buckner). Turnovers: 6 (Davis 2, Eisley, Finley, Nash, Nowitzki). Steals: 3 (Bradley, Buckner, Nowitzki). ____________________________________________ La Lakers 25 34 30 30 - 119 Dallas 26 29 23 31 - 109 ____________________________________________ Technical fouls: None. Flagrant fouls: None. A: 18,287. T: 2:24. Officials: Ron Garretson, Jason Phillips, Nolan Fine.


Game Story

DALLAS (Ticker) -- Even the emotion surrounding coach Don Nelson's return could not inspire the Dallas Mavericks to overcome their penchant for failure against the Los Angeles Lakers.

On the bench for the first time since December 30 after undergoing prostate cancer treatment, Nelson watched the Mavericks absorb their 21st loss in 22 meetings with the Lakers, a 119-109 setback.

Reunion Arena was at a fever pitch as Nelson's return to the sidelines prompted an opening 16-6 burst for the Mavericks, fueled by a pair of 3-pointers and two free throws from Steve Nash.

"They got off to a hot start in this ballgame and that really put us on our heels," Lakers coach Phil Jackson said. "Maybe it worked to our advantage that Steve Nash had so many points in the first half. It looked like he ran out of gas a little bit."

Dallas was unable to sustain the emotion-fueled pace and the Lakers used a rare balanced attack to improve to 3-0 against the Mavericks this season. Dallas snapped an 18-game losing streak against the Lakers here on April 18 of last season.

"I thought we played pretty darn hard," Nelson said. "We had a lot of energy. We had to make a lot of shots from the outside, I didn't think we shot the ball like we are capable of. They (Lakers) also were really good."

Shaquille O'Neal, who took exception to Nelson's Hack-a-Shaq strategy in earlier encounters with Dallas, calling it "clown basketball" playfully donned a clown nose with Nelson prior to the game.

"I told him, welcome back. I'm glad he's back," O'Neal said. "He said that he's cancer free and he's glad to be back."

But once the contest began, O'Neal was all business, scoring 29 points to pace five Lakers in double figures. Rick Fox scored 22 points, Isaiah Rider 20, Kobe Bryant 19 and rookie Mike Penberthy 11 for Los Angeles, which improved to 3-2 on its season-high six-game road trip.

Nash finished with a season-high 31 points for Dallas, which went 13-8 under the guise of Nelson's son, Donn.

O'Neal, Fox and Horace Grant combined to grab 34 rebounds as Los Angeles held a commanding 55-32 advantage on the boards. The Lakers shot 46 percent (38-of-82) and outscored the Mavs by a whopping 37-15 at the line.

O'Neal made sure Nelson did not resort to fouling the 7-1 pivotman in the waning moments by driling 11-of-15 free throws.

"That's been my mantra during the year, is that when Shaq starts making his free throws, we're a different ballclub," Jackson said. "And tonight he made them under the duress of the foul."

"When Shaq makes his free throws like that, then the Hack-a-Shaq goes right out the window," Nelson said. "We were only able to use that tactic for a real short period of time in the second quarter. Then we basically had to stay away from it and only foul him when he was in a dunk situation. But, to his credit, he's a competitive guy and he stepped up and made them and took us right out of that tactic."

Dirk Nowitzki scored 25 points and Michael Finley added 22 for Dallas, which shot 45 percent (41-of-91) and committed only six turnovers while forcing 10.

"Of course, it's a tough loss," Nowitzki said. "We were right there. They just had a better day. We started off hot but you always know they are going to come back. They are the world champs and they had a good game."

After Dallas' hot start, Los Angeles raced back into contention. Rider hit a 23-footer and O'Neal slammed to spark a 19-8 burst that Fox capped with a 3-pointer, giving Los Angeles a 25-24 lead with 25 seconds left in the opening period.

Finley responded with a slam as Dallas took a one-point lead into the second quarter.

Leading 59-55 at halftime, thanks to 13 points from O'Neal and 12 and 11, respectively, from Rider and Fox, the Lakers took control early in the third quarter.

Rider opened the second-half scoring before Bryant hit two free throws and a jumper, stretching the advantage to 65-55 with 10:28 remaining in the third period.

The advantage swelled to 87-69 when rookie Mark Madsen hit two free throws with 2:17 left in the third quarter before Dallas mounted what proved to be a futile comeback.

Finley's 3-pointer capped an 11-2 run to close the period, pulling Dallas within 89-78 and the Mavs got it down to four when Finley again connected from long range with 2:36 to play.

The Lakers were forced to call timeout seconds later after Bryant twisted his ankle by stepping on O'Neal's foot during the sequence. Bryant got to his feet, went to the huddle and decided to make a go of it despite hobbling noticeably.

On Los Angeles' next trip, he executed a perfect give-and-go with O'Neal in the post, driving into the lane for an acrobatic jumper that gave the Lakers a 109-103 lead with 2:16 left.

O'Neal's layup and two free throws by Fox opened things up for good, giving Los Angeles a 113-103 cushion with 1:35 remaining. Bryant and O'Neal both left the floor thereafter.

"I told these guys when I come back in the second half, I'm going to come back with a vengeance," O'Neal said. "I'm not playing, I'm serious. I'm trying to turn my game up."

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