Final

Los Angeles wins series 4-1 (Game 3 of 5)

Los Angeles wins series 4-1

Game 1: Wednesday, May 21st
Spurs85Final
Lakers89
Game 2: Friday, May 23rd
Spurs71Final
Lakers101
Game 3: Sunday, May 25th
Lakers84Final
Spurs103
Game 4: Tuesday, May 27th
Lakers93Final
Spurs91
Game 5: Thursday, May 29th
Spurs92Final
Lakers100

Lakers 84

(57-25, 27-14 away)

Spurs 103

(56-26, 34-7 home)

    Coverage: TNT

    7:30 PM ET, May 25, 2008

    AT&T Center, San Antonio, TX

    1 2 3 4 T
    LAL 24 15 18 2784
    SA 21 28 20 34103

    Top Performers

    Los Angeles: K. Bryant 30 Pts, 5 Reb, 1 Ast, 3 Stl

    San Antonio: T. Duncan 22 Pts, 21 Reb, 5 Ast, 1 Blk

    Ginobili, Spurs drown Lakers to remain unbeaten at home in playoffs

    SAN ANTONIO (AP) -- Manu Ginobili struggled for two games and it seemed he might not have anything left. A sore ankle, a ripped fingernail and plenty of missed shots. All the while, he insisted he would step up for the San Antonio Spurs.

    He kept his promise on Sunday night. And nobody on either team was surprised.

    "He is such a competitor," Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said after Ginobili scored 30 points to lead the Spurs to a 103-84 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers in Game 3 of the Western Conference finals. "He puts so much on his shoulders, he fights through a lot of things. ... He's got a lot of confidence in what he can do.

    Spur of the Moment

    When the Spurs have needed Manu Ginobili, he usually has risen to the occasion. He did just that, bouncing back from sluggish performances for a 30-point night Sunday.
    1st 2 Rds.
    Game 1, 2 vs. Lakers
    Game 3
    PPG20.08.530
    FG pct.44.123.860.0
    3-pt FG pct.37.720.071.4

    "And so when he has these games, it is really not a surprise anymore."

    Ginobili hit five of the Spurs' 10 3-pointers and got to the rim a few times to keep the defending champions from falling into an 0-3 hole, which no NBA team has ever overcome.

    "I was too stagnant in the first two games," said Ginobili, the league's top sixth man who came off the bench on Sunday. "I didn't feel like I was being me. ... I made the first shots. I felt good. And then it was easier for me."

    The Lakers lead the series 2-1. Game 4 is Tuesday in San Antonio.

    Tim Duncan had 22 points, 21 rebounds and five assists, and Tony Parker added 20 points and five assists for the Spurs, who remained unbeaten at home this postseason.

    Kobe Bryant led the Lakers with 30 points and Pau Gasol scored 15.

    "It's a good experience for us to play against the defending champs and have them kick our butts the way they did," Bryant said. "I think we grew up a lot tonight."

    Lamar Odom struggled all night, finishing 2-of-11 from the field for seven points. But he had six of the Lakers' 13 assists and 11 rebounds.

    "On me personally it definitely snowballed," Odom said. "That happens, but sometimes I'd rather go out swinging than being passive. It was just one of those nights."

    The Lakers also struggled at the free throw line, going just 8-of-17. Bryant went to the line only once.

    On Sunday, the Spurs got a lead midway through the second quarter and never looked back, despite a late surge from Bryant.

    The Spurs had squandered a 20-point lead to lose Game 1 in Los Angeles and the Lakers routed them in Game 2.

    "They were energized and they played with a lot more emotion, a lot more energy than we did," Lakers coach Phil Jackson said. "They were quicker to the ball. And it was quite obvious at times."

    Up 69-57 entering the fourth, the Spurs opened with a 12-4 run, and Parker's layup gave them a 20-point lead with a little over 8 minutes to play.

    Elias Says


    Manu Ginobili scored 30 points, Tim Duncan scored 22 and Tony Parker had 20 in the Spurs win over the Lakers on Sunday. It's the 14th time that those three have scored 20 or more points in the same playoff game, tying them for the second-highest total for any trio in NBA history. The Celtics' Larry Bird, Dennis Johnson and Kevin McHale scored 20 in the same playoff game 15 times; the 76ers' Wilt Chamberlain, Hal Greer and Chet Walker also did it 14 times.

    • Read more Elias Says

    Then Bryant did what Bryant does: almost single-handedly pulled his team out of the hole. He hit four 3-pointers over the course of less than 2½ minutes and his last one brought the Lakers within 88-76 with 5 minutes to play.

    But the Lakers would get no closer, not when the Spurs' title defense would be all but ruined with a Game 3 loss.

    Duncan answered with a three-point play to put the Spurs back up by 15 and not long after Brent Barry's steal that resulted in a three-point play for Ginobili made it 97-78 with 3:26 to go.

    Reserve Jordan Farmar scored 10 points for the Lakers.

    In the first half, Parker was penetrating the paint, but Ginobili was the big key for the Spurs. He had 22 points at the break -- more than the 17 he scored in Games 1 and 2 combined. And whether or not his injured left ankle was bothering him, he didn't need it to explode to the basket because he hit 3 after 3.

    After Bryant's driving dunk past Duncan with 4:57 left in the first quarter put the Lakers up 15-8, Ginobili hit back-to-back 3s from the same spot on the wing to get the Spurs within a point.

    "He bounced back the way I thought he would," Bryant said. "He is a phenomenal player and he had a spectacular first half."

    He didn't stop in the second quarter.

    His second of back-to-back 3s 4½ minutes in put the Spurs up 33-30, giving his team the lead for good. Then he got to the rim about 30 seconds later and was fouled. His free throw made it 36-32.

    The Lakers struggled in the second quarter -- turning the ball over early in the period on a shot-clock violation, missing free throws and shooting 7-of-17 from the field -- and the Spurs pulled away.

    Ginobili hit his fifth 3 of the night as the shot clock expired with less than a minute left in the first half. The Spurs outscored the Lakers 28-15 in the second quarter for a 49-39 lead at the break.

    Odom was 1-of-7 from the field in the first half and guard Derek Fisher was scoreless.

    Odom didn't fare any better in the third, and Gasol and Bryant combined for just 10 points as Spurs' defender Bruce Bowen continued to hound this year's league MVP.

    Ginobili cooled in the third quarter -- when the Spurs went up by as many as 13 -- just as Duncan got hot. Duncan's two jump shots with less than two minutes to play, plus Ginobili's drive that showed he can still get to the rim, gave the Spurs a 12-point lead heading into the fourth.

    "I don't feel like my last step is as strong as probably a couple months ago, but it's not a big issue," Ginobili said. "I mean, I think I can still finish."

    Game notes


    The Spurs last lost at home on April 9 to Phoenix . San Antonio eliminated the Suns in the first round in five games. ... Fisher got a technical foul with 4:45 left in the third quarter just after teammate Vladimir Radmanovic hit a layup to bring the Lakers within eight. ... In a dig at Bryant, the crowd chanted "M-V-P" when Duncan went to the line late in the fourth quarter. ... Ginobili got a standing ovation from the crowd when he went to the bench with 2:56 to play. ... Fisher finished with two points on 1-of-4 shooting. ... The Spurs hit 10 3s, the Lakers hit six.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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    Team Stat Comparison

     
    LAL
    SA
    Points 84 103
    FGM-FGA 35-82 (.427) 38-74 (.514)
    3PM-3PA 6-17 (.353) 10-18 (.556)
    FTM-FTA 8-17 (.471) 17-23 (.739)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 8-42 3-39
    Assists 13 22
    Turnovers 14 12
    Steals 5 4
    Blocks 0 4
    Fast Break Points 6 14
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 22 (1/0) 19 (0/0)
    Largest Lead 7 21

    Top Performers

    Los Angeles
    San Antonio
    Kobe Bryant Bryant
    Points: 30
    Reb: 5
    Ast: 1
    Stl: 3
    Blk: 0
    Tim Duncan Duncan
    Points: 22
    Reb: 21
    Ast: 5
    Stl: 0
    Blk: 1