Kobe didn’t hit a field goal in the fourth quarter, three of his 26 points came in that period via free throws. But he got support where it counted: Lamar Odom kept beating Carlos Boozer to the basket and Pau Gasol just made Mehmet Okur pay on the offensive end. Deron Williams helped keep the Jazz in the game with crucial threes, and even brought them within one — but the emphatic dunk by Gasol off an Odom miss late in the fourth really seemed to seal it, and the Lakers outscored Utah 8-2 in the final minute, as they never trailed in the game.
Something about Rajon Rondo on that home court; he looks like he’s absorbing those lessons and growing, facilitating, getting 13 assists to go with 20 points. KG had 26 and 16 boards, Paul Pierce had 29. LeBron kept fighting through with 33 in the loss. However, I’m pretty sure you can count the number of fans who think this isn’t going to go seven on less than two hands.
Photo: AP/Kevork Djansezian