Perhaps one of Mike Brown's best traits, really, was working too hard. Pau Gasol gets an easy double-double, Kobe Bryant nearly gets a triple-double and the game got away from the Golden State Warriors as the Lakers pulled away to win 101-77 under interim head coach Bernie Bickerstaff.
Bryant led all scorers with 27 points on 10-of-18 shooting and made two three-pointers; he also had nine rebounds and seven assists. Gasol looked like a new man with 14 points and a game-high 16 rebounds. Even the team benefited from Metta World Piece being on the court with his defense, and not so much his 1-of-7 shooting from the three-point line and even worse 3-of-14 from the field overall.
It was the first game without the head coach Los Angeles hired just a little over a season ago. Golden State isn't a strong opponent, but starting off the season well at 3-2, this makes it look like an even more impressive victory after all the adversity the Lakers faced on Friday.
Even the bench contributed, with the biggest players—Darius Morris and Jordan Hill—combining for 24 points and nine rebounds.
Both teams turned the ball over a lot, and neither shot the ball very well, hovering at 40 percent or lower. But the biggest difference was the improved bench play by the Lakers and the fact that they out-rebounded the Warriors, 58-47.
Stephen Curry was the best player on Golden State tonight, contributing 18 points and five assists. He also hit all four of his free throws.
Who knows what direction the Lakers are headed in as they look for a new head coach. But at least for the moment, the team finally can grab their second victory of the year and look ahead to the rest of their six-game homestand. The Sacramento Kings are up next, with tipoff on Sunday at 6:30 p.m. PT inside Staples Center.