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NBA FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL --- --- --- --- ----- LA LAKERS 27 22 17 23 89 DENVER 13 22 20 13 68 FINAL

HIGH SCORERS: LAL - KOBE BRYANT 24, MITCH RICHMOND 13, SHAQUILLE ONEAL 10 DEN - NICK VAN EXEL 21, JAMES POSEY 9, SHAWNELLE SCOTT 8

HIGH REBOUND: LAL - KOBE BRYANT 13, SHAQUILLE ONEAL 13 DEN - SHAWNELLE SCOTT 6, RAEF LAFRENTZ 5

HIGH ASSISTS: LAL - KOBE BRYANT 7, SHAQUILLE ONEAL 6 DEN - NICK VAN EXEL 6, AVERY JOHNSON 2

ATT: 19,521


Extended Box

LA LAKERS (89) AT DENVER (68)

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

FOX F 30 3-3 0-2 1 6 7 2 1 0 2 8 WALKER F 24 1-3 0-2 1 7 8 0 2 0 2 2 ONEAL C 34 4-11 2-9 6 7 13 6 0 2 1 10 BRYANT G 37 9-15 5-6 3 10 13 7 4 2 4 24 HUNTER G 20 4-7 0-0 0 0 0 4 2 1 1 9 SHAW 12 2-7 0-0 3 4 7 0 1 1 0 4 HORRY 21 3-5 0-0 0 4 4 1 2 0 1 8 RICHMOND 20 4-9 4-4 0 1 1 3 1 0 1 13 GEORGE 24 2-8 1-2 2 2 4 3 1 0 1 5 CRISPIN 7 1-3 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 MEDVEDENKO 8 1-2 0-0 1 1 2 0 1 0 0 2 MCCOY 3 1-1 0-0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 2

TOTALS 240 35-74 12-25 17 42 59 27 15 6 14 89 (.473) (.480) TEAM REBS: 10 TOTAL TO: 18(15 PTS)

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

ABDUL-WAHAD F 14 1-6 0-0 2 1 3 1 1 0 1 2 BOWEN F 32 1-2 0-0 1 2 3 0 2 0 1 2 LAFRENTZ C 30 3-9 0-0 1 4 5 1 3 1 1 6 POSEY G 23 3-7 2-2 0 4 4 1 3 3 2 9 VAN EXEL G 38 8-22 4-4 0 4 4 6 3 1 1 21 G MCCLOUD 32 3-9 0-0 1 2 3 0 3 1 2 7 WILLIAMS 16 1-8 1-2 2 2 4 1 3 0 1 3 LENARD 10 1-6 0-0 2 0 2 1 0 0 0 3 JOHNSON 25 3-9 1-2 0 1 1 2 2 0 0 7 SCOTT 15 4-6 0-0 3 3 6 0 3 0 0 8 CHEANEY 5 0-2 0-0 1 0 1 1 0 1 0 0 ANDERSON DNP - COACH'S DECISION

TOTALS 240 28-86 8-10 13 23 36 14 23 7 9 68 (.326) (.800) TEAM REBS: 7 TOTAL TO: 10(15 PTS)

LA LAKERS 27 22 17 23 - 89 DENVER 13 22 20 13 - 68

BLOCKED SHOTS: LA LAKERS - GEORGE 4, HORRY 2. DENVER - BOWEN 3, LAFRENTZ, SCOTT, ABDUL-WAHAD. 3-PT. FIELD GOALS: LA LAKERS 7-12 (.583), FOX 2-2, BRYANT 1-2, HUNTER 1-1, HORRY 2-4, RICHMOND 1-1, GEORGE 0-1, CRISPIN 0-1. DENVER 4-15 (.267), BOWEN 0-1, LAFRENTZ 0-1, POSEY 1-1, VAN EXEL 1-5, G MCCLOUD 1-4, LENARD 1-2, JOHNSON 0-1. TECHNICALS: NONE. OFFICIALS: PAT FRAHER, LEON WOOD, VIOLET PALMER. A - 19,521. T - 1:57.


Box Score

LA LAKERS (89) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Fox 30 3-3 0-2 1-7 2 1 8 Walker 24 1-3 0-2 1-8 0 2 2 Oneal 34 4-11 2-9 6-13 6 0 10 Bryant 37 9-15 5-6 3-13 7 4 24 Hunter 20 4-7 0-0 0-0 4 2 9 Shaw 12 2-7 0-0 3-7 0 1 4 Horry 21 3-5 0-0 0-4 1 2 8 Richmond 20 4-9 4-4 0-1 3 1 13 George 24 2-8 1-2 2-4 3 1 5 Crispin 7 1-3 0-0 0-0 0 0 2 Medvedenko 8 1-2 0-0 1-2 0 1 2 Mccoy 3 1-1 0-0 0-0 1 0 2 _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 35-74 12-25 17-59 27 15 89 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.473, FT-.480. 3-Point Goals: 7-12, .583 (Fox 2-2, Bryant 1-2, Hunter 1-1, Horry 2-4, Richmond 1-1, George 0-1, Crispin 0-1). Team rebounds: 10. Blocked shots: 6 (George 4, Horry 2). Turnovers: 18 (Bryant 4, Fox 2, Walker 2, George, Horry, Hunter, Mccoy, Oneal, Richmond). Steals: 6 (Bryant 2, Oneal 2, Hunter, Shaw).

DENVER (68) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Abdul-wahad 14 1-6 0-0 2-3 1 1 2 Bowen 32 1-2 0-0 1-3 0 2 2 Lafrentz 30 3-9 0-0 1-5 1 3 6 Posey 23 3-7 2-2 0-4 1 3 9 Van Exel 38 8-22 4-4 0-4 6 3 21 G Mccloud 32 3-9 0-0 1-3 0 3 7 Williams 16 1-8 1-2 2-4 1 3 3 Lenard 10 1-6 0-0 2-2 1 0 3 Johnson 25 3-9 1-2 0-1 2 2 7 Scott 15 4-6 0-0 3-6 0 3 8 Cheaney 5 0-2 0-0 1-1 1 0 0 Anderson DNP - coach's decision _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 28-86 8-10 13-36 14 23 68 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.326, FT-.800. 3-Point Goals: 4-15, .267 (Bowen 0-1, Lafrentz 0-1, Posey 1-1, Van Exel 1-5, G Mccloud 1-4, Lenard 1-2, Johnson 0-1). Team rebounds: 7. Blocked shots: 6 (Bowen 3, Lafrentz, Scott, Abdul-wahad). Turnovers: 10 (G Mccloud 2, Posey 2, Abdul-wahad, Bowen, Lafrentz, Van Exel, Williams). Steals: 7 (Posey 3, Cheaney, G Mccloud, Lafrentz, Van Exel). ____________________________________________ La Lakers 27 22 17 23 - 89 Denver 13 22 20 13 - 68 ____________________________________________ Technical fouls: None. Flagrant fouls: None. A: 19,521. T: 1:57. Officials: Pat Fraher, Leon Wood, Violet Palmer.


Game Story

DENVER (Ticker) -- Shaquille O'Neal only scored 10 points and the game was never in doubt.

Kobe Bryant had 24 points, 13 rebounds and seven assists and Mitch Richmond scored a season-high 13 points off the bench as the Lakers led wire-to-wire in an 89-68 rout of the Denver Nuggets.

Denver is a team without a legitimate center, providing just the type of opponent O'Neal usually devours. The 7-2 superstar center made just 4-of-11 shots and 2-of-9 free throws but grabbed 13 rebounds.

"I really worked hard to get my teammates involved," said O'Neal, who recorded six assists. "Our defense played pretty well. We were getting the ball down on offense and making our shots."

Bryant and Richmond picked up the slack, combining to make 13-of-24 shots for Los Angeles, which drained 7-of-12 3-pointers to overcome 12-of-25 free-throw shooting.

The Lakers opened with a 10-2 run and never trailed. They had a 27-13 lead after the first quarter and scored 10 of the first 12 points in the second period to build an insurmountable lead.

Denver shot a season-low 33 percent (28-of-86) and was unable to take advantage of Los Angeles' woes at the free-throw line, attempting just 10 foul shots on its home floor.

"If we would've known we would hold the Lakers to 89 points, I would've given us a pretty good chance to win this game," Nuggets coach Dan Issel said. "Our defense was really not that bad, we just couldn't hit a basket. We you shoot like that, you aren't going to beat anybody."

"Maybe their overtime game took something out of them," Los Angeles coach Phil Jackson said, referring to Denver's overtime win on Monday. "It looked like two teams that dragged around on the court. There was not much life."

Nick Van Exel was the only Nugget in double figures with 21 points on 8-of-22 shooting. James Posey added nine points and Shawnelle Scott collected eight points and six rebounds off the bench.

Denver recorded season lows for points in game and a half, scoring just 33 in the first 24 minutes. The Nuggets also had a season-low 13 points in the first and fourth quarters.

Despite its horrendous performance, Denver rallied in the third quarter to get within striking distance.

The Lakers took 53-39 lead on a dunk by O'Neal with 8:41 left in the third, but James Posey nailed a 3-pointer and Van Exel scored seven points in a 14-6 run to bring the Nuggets within 59-53 with 1:22 to go.

Denver trailed, 61-55, with 41 seconds remaining, but Robert Horry hit a 3-pointer and Stanislav Medvedenko dunked with two seconds left to give the Lakers a double-digit lead for good.

Los Angeles opened the final quarter with a 23-6 run and took its largest lead, 85-61, on a 3-pointer by Horry with 3:31 left. Richmond scored seven points in the fourth quarter and Bryant added four.

Lindsey Hunter scored nine points and Rick Fox had eight and seven rebounds for the Lakers, who shot 47 percent (35-of-74) and had a commanding 59-36 rebounding edge.

"We've been playing well in spurts, we just haven't played a good, full 48 (minutes) yet," Bryant said. "This was a low-scoring one, it was good that we held on and pulled it out."

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