NBA Scores And More: Lakers Blast Hawks, Celtics Deny Warriors

The Lakers had no problem keeping the Hawks at bay. In other action, the Celtics tightened the screws on the competitive Warriors and the Nuggets celebrated the Carmelo Anthony trade by pounding the Grizzlies.

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Hawks Vs. Lakers: Kobe Bryant Ensures That Atlanta Can't Hang With The Champs

Kobe Bryant had an easy night Tuesday, scoring 20 points in 26 minutes before racking up some rest he didn't get in Sunday's All-Star Game as the Los Angeles Lakers breezed to a 104-80 blow-out over the Atlanta Hawks. The Lakers had a double-digit lead before the first quarter ended, and led by 21 at halftime. Atlanta couldn't make any sort of run to get back into the game late.

Josh Smith might still be in the Bahamas, and he really needs to pick a better stunt double to dress up like him, at least when the Lakers are the opponent. Smith had seven points on 3-9 shooting, and the Hawks need much more. Joe Johnson had 14 points, but needed 14 field goal attempts to get there.

Only one Lakers' starter played in the fourth quarter (Pau Gasol saw three minutes). If teams want to bow at the feet of the champs and let them gets some Spurs-style rest, Phil Jackson is not going to complain. Not one bit.


Celtics Vs. Warriors: Boston Rides Stars To Victory At Golden State

Kevin Garnett had a throwback game with 26 points, 12 rebounds, six assists and two blocks as the Boston Celtics broke away from the Golden State Warriors in the second half to win 115-93. Boston survived hot shooting from the Warriors early; the teams were tied at 60 at the half, but Golden State shot just 7-21 in the third quarter and 5-18 in the fourth. Boston's just vicious when they tighten the screws on defense.

Dorell Wright led the Warriors with 19 points, and his game was indicative of his team's effort. Wright scored 11 in the first quarter and eight over the next three periods. No Warriors had more than six rebounds, and Boston earned offensive rebounds on more than 30 percent of their opportunities, which is too high but par for the course for Golden State.

Stephen Curry was his efficient self, shooting 7-10 on his way to 18 points. The other famous shooter in this game, Ray Allen, hit 8-16 for 18 points. Rajon Rondo put up 19 points and 15 assists.


Grizzlies Vs. Nuggets: J.R. Smith Carried Shorthanded Denver Past Memphis

J.R. Smith scored 26 points as the Denver Nuggets celebrated the completion of the Carmelo Anthony trade by whipping the Memphis Grizzlies 120-107. Denver took control midway through the first quarter, and then pounded Memphis into submission by the end of the first half with a 14-0 run led by Smith and Ty Lawson.

Nuggets coach George Karl had just eight players available as the New York Knicks headed to the Rocky Mountains won't be available until Wednesday. But all eight played relatively well, and the Grizzlies were flat as can be with 21 turnovers and simply awful defense.

In other action:

Bobcats 114, Raptors 101: Toronto outshot Charlotte, but the Bobcats had fewer turnovers, more free throws and more offensive rebounds. Those things matter!

Heat 117, Kings 97: For the record, the Heat outshot the Kings. In fact, the Heat were shooting better than 70 percent much of the first half. (They ended up at 63 percent.)

Pacers 113, Wizards 96: The Vogels are back! Indiana blitzed Washington behind 21 points from Danny Granger. Andray Blatche had 21 for the Wizards. Wait, is it Blatche time? This is about the time last season he picked it up. He just needs a four-month warm-up, that's all.

Rockets 108, Pistons 100: Patrick Patterson, who often plays very few minutes, saved Houston with 20 points off the bench. Only one Houston starter -- Kevin Martin -- broke 10 points (16).

Bucks 94, Timberwolves 88: Brandon Jennings might be back, ladies and gentlemen. He scored 27 and had -- not kidding -- two blocks. Kevin Love had about a perfect game with 20 points on 6-10 shooting, 17 rebounds, six assists and zero turnovers. The teams combined to shoot 38 percent.

Thunder 111, Clippers 88: Oklahoma City kicked off its post-break schedule with a vicious defeat of the Clips. Jeff Green, of all people, led OKC with 22 on 7-12 shooting. Blake Griffin had 28 and 11, and fellow rookies Eric Bledsoe and Al-Farouq Aminu had 12 each off the bench. But everyone else was pretty bad.

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