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Wednesday, Feb. 16, 2011

Embarassed Lakers blasted by Bobcats

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) Los Angeles Lakers coach Phil Jackson was so upset he spoke to reporters for 5 seconds and then walked away. Kobe Bryant sneaked out of the locker room before addressing the press at all.

News photo
Pushing for the paint: Blake Griffin of the Clippers drives on Milwaukee's Jon Brockman in the first half on Monday night. The Bucks beat Los Angeles 102-78. AP PHOTO

A once promising road trip has quickly turned sour for the two-time defending champions, although they probably should have seen their most lopsided loss of the season coming.

The Charlotte Bobcats somehow own them.

Gerald Wallace had 20 points and 11 rebounds, Gerald Henderson added 18 points and helped slow Bryant, and the Bobcats cruised to a 109-89 victory on Monday night to extend one of the more unusual one-sided matchups in the NBA.

The Bobcats have won eight of the past 10 meetings. The Lakers, 5-8 all-time against the NBA's newest team, hold a losing record against only one other club — the Boston Celtics.

This latest loss, full of missed shots and poor defense and coming on the heels of an ugly defeat in Orlando, left Jackson steamed.

"I'm embarrassed about what we did and that's it," Jackson said as he began to stroll away. "Thank you."

The Lakers then continued to keep the locker room closed to reporters, allowing Bryant to slip out and head to the bus after he scored 20 points. But Bryant missed 11 of his first 16 shots, got to the foul line only four times and committed five fouls as he played despite missing shootaround with an illness.

The weary Lakers, who had started this extended trip 4-0, will close it out Wednesday at Cleveland.

"Everything we do is obviously going to be compared to what we've done the last two seasons," guard Derek Fisher said. "But this is an entirely different team. Half of our roster is new, so there are still things we're learning about ourselves."

Hawks 94, Pistons 79

In Auburn Hills, Mich., Josh Smith had 27 points and 14 rebounds and the Hawks rallied for a victory over the Pistons.

Atlanta trailed by as many as 15 points in the second quarter but held the Pistons to 28 percent shooting in the second half as they pulled away to win.

Spurs 102, Nets 85

In Newark, N.J., Manu Ginobili scored 10 of his 22 points in a game-breaking second-half run and the Spurs put in another dominant performance with a victory over the Nets.

Tim Duncan added 15 points and 11 rebounds, Tony Parker had 13 points, six rebounds and seven assists and DeJuan Blair had 10 points and 11 rebounds as the Spurs won for the ninth time in 11 games and 17th in 20.

Trail Blazers 95, T-Wolves 81

In Minneapolis, Wesley Matthews had 23 points while LaMarcus Aldridge added 21 to lead the Trail Blazers to a victory over the Timberwolves.

Dante Cunningham had career highs with 18 points and 13 rebounds for the Blazers, who have now won 16 straight games against the Timberwolves and five in a row overall, their longest winning streak of the season.

Bucks 102, Clippers 78

In Milwaukee, Carlos Delfino scored 21 of his 26 points in the second half and made a career-high seven 3-pointers to lead the Bucks to a victory over the Clippers.

Everyone pitched in for the short-handed Bucks, who came in losers of seven of the last eight.

Rockets 121, Nuggets 102

In Houston, Courtney Lee scored 22 points, Shane Battier added 17 and the Rockets shot well from 3-point range and controlled Carmelo Anthony in a win over the Nuggets.

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