The Los Angeles Lakers middling start continued Thursday night when they lost to the Portland Trail Blazers, 107-96. The win improves Portland's record to 5-1, good enough in the early going of the NBA season to have the Blazers atop the Western Conference's Northwest Division.
For L.A., the loss drops the Lakers to 4-4 in this young season, and marks their 17th loss in the past 21 regular season games at Portland; The Lakers are just 2-11 in their past 13 games in Portlandia. The Blazers were led by Gerald Wallace (31) and LaMarcus Aldridge (28), who combined for 59 points and 15 rebounds.
Andrew Bynum continued his strong play as of late, finishing with 21 points and 14 rebounds, his fourth straight double-double. Kobe Bryant, a pretty neat basketball player, chipped in 30 points on 13-of-24 shooting.
The Lakers took a four-point lead into halftime, but then the third quarter happened. The game was tied, 66-66, with 6:27 left in the third, before Portland went on a 10-0 run to build a lead they never relinquished. More bad numbers for Lakers fans: L.A. shot 63 percent in the first half, but then struggled to just 5-for-20 (25 percent) in the infamous third quarter (and just 32 percent overall in the second half).
Los Angeles hosts the Golden State Warriors Friday night while Portland is at Phoenix to start the weekend.