Regular Season Series (Game 4 of 4)

Series starts 11/14

Game 1: Monday, November 14th
Game 2: Wednesday, December 14th
Game 3: Wednesday, December 28th
Game 4: Saturday, February 11th

Grizzlies 100

(27-23, 12-15 away)

Lakers 99

(25-25, 12-9 home)

Coverage: FSS

7:30 PM ET, February 11, 2006

STAPLES Center, Los Angeles, CA

1 2 3 4 T
MEM 34 18 23 25100
LAL 27 25 26 2199

Top Performers

Memphis: P. Gasol 31 Pts, 12 Reb, 7 Ast, 2 Blk

Los Angeles: K. Brown 18 Pts, 8 Reb, 1 Blk

Gasol's late heroics lift Memphis over Kobe, Lakers

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Pau Gasol's low-post dominance and a determined starting backcourt of ex-Los Angeles Lakers were enough to help the Memphis Grizzlies escape Staples Center with a one-point win for the second time this season.

Gasol scored four of his 31 points in the final 53 seconds, Eddie Jones had 25 points against his former team, and the Grizzlies kept Kobe Bryant in check en route to a 100-99 victory over the Lakers on Saturday night.

"I'm ecstatic for the guys because they've had so many games like this in the last three weeks where they've been around but haven't finished the games off," coach Mike Fratello said. "Just when it looked like it was slipping away again tonight, they dug down."

Former Lakers guard Chucky Atkins had 18 points, including a tiebreaking free throw with 3 seconds left, as the Grizzlies ended a season-worst five-game losing streak and a six-game road skid. Memphis has won three of its last four games against the Lakers in Los Angeles, after losing the first 18.

Bryant scored 12 of his 26 points in the fourth quarter and Smush Parker added 20 for the Lakers. Bryant, who came in averaging a league-leading 35.4 points, missed 12 of his first 17 shots and finished 10-for-28 from the field.

"They executed much better than we did down the stretch and got big plays when they needed to," Bryant said. "We didn't make the stops that we needed to. Offensively we did all right, but defensively we weren't able to keep guys in front of us at the end at we put them at the free throw line.

"I don't even know how many free throws they shot in the fourth quarter (12-for-17), but I assume it's a lot -- especially at the end of the game. That's when we have to buckle down and make them make shots -- not bail them out with free points."

Bryant made a 3-pointer that triggered a run of eight straight points by the nine-time All-Star and gave the Lakers an 86-77 lead with 7:48 to play. But Jones' 3-pointer capped a 9-2 spurt and got Memphis within 90-89 with 3:53 remaining.

Bryant gave the Lakers some breathing room with a 14-footer, Kwame Brown converted an offensive rebound of Lamar Odom's long miss into a 3-point play and Bryant drained a 20-footer for a 99-95 lead with 1:07 left. But the Grizzlies wouldn't quit.

Brown tied a season high with 18 points and grabbed eight rebounds before fouling out with 53 seconds to go. Gasol sank both free throws, then blocked a shot by Odom at the other end and tied the score at 99 on a layup with 29 seconds left.

"The last few games were tough because I didn't produce in the last five minutes," Gasol said. "Tonight it was time to step up, be a little more aggressive and produce. Luckily I was aggressive and things worked out well."

Gasol missed a free throw attempting to complete a three-point play, but Brian Cook missed a 16-footer for the Lakers and Atkins made one of two free throws for a one-point lead.

"I would take that same shot again," Cook said. "It felt good, but it was just short. I had the confidence to take it, and I will shoot it again if I ever have a chance."

Devean George rebounded the ball on Atkins' second free throw attempt, and the Lakers had a chance to pull out the win. But Bryant was closely guarded by Jones through two screens and missed a long jumper he got off after the final buzzer.

"I didn't quite get the look that I wanted to get. I'm not sure if I even got it off in time," Bryant said.

Memphis reserve guard Mike Miller missed his second straight game because of a sprained left ankle. So there was no rematch between himself and Bryant, whose flagrant foul against Miller on Dec. 28 at Staples Center earned Bryant a two-game suspension without pay. The flagrant foul was in retaliation for an earlier play, when Miller drove to the basket and left Bryant with a gash over his left eye that required three stitches.

The Lakers, returning from a 2-5 road trip, lost for the first time in seven home games since a 98-94 loss to Utah in the first game of Bryant's suspension. Center Chris Mihm missed his fourth straight game because of a sprained right shoulder.

Cook, who totaled 55 points in his previous two games, was rendered useless for the final 10:49 of the first half after picking up his third foul -- and a technical foul from referee Joe Forte for arguing the call. The foul came 50 seconds after the frustrated Cook shot an airball from behind the 3-point arc.

Game notes

Before the opening tip, Magic Johnson presented Bryant with a warmup jacket that had logo patches from all nine of Bryant's All-Star games sewn into the sleeves. ... With his 639th victory as an NBA head coach, Fratello passed Chuck Daly for 17th place all-time. Next on the list is Red Holzman at 696. ... Jones was ejected midway through the fourth quarter of the Grizzlies' 100-99 overtime win over the Lakers at Staples Center on Dec. 28.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


Team Stat Comparison

Points 100 99
FGM-FGA 31-64 (.484) 32-78 (.410)
3PM-3PA 8-17 (.471) 8-27 (.296)
FTM-FTA 30-42 (.714) 27-31 (.871)
Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 10-38 11-40
Assists 17 18
Turnovers 11 7
Steals 3 7
Blocks 5 3
Fast Break Points 9 12
Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 22 (1/0) 29 (1/0)
Largest Lead 13 9

Top Performers

Los Angeles
Pau Gasol Gasol
Points: 31
Reb: 12
Ast: 7
Stl: 0
Blk: 2
Kwame Brown Brown
Points: 18
Reb: 8
Ast: 0
Stl: 0
Blk: 1