The Los Angeles Lakers gave the Miami Heat a battle on Thursday night, but the Heat were able to pull away down the stretch to emerge with a 99-90 victory at Staples Center.
It was a back-and-forth contest from the start. The Heat took a 26-22 lead after one quarter, but the Lakers bounced back in the second quarter to take a 45-44 lead at the half.
The third quarter took a turn for the worse for the Lakers, as they were outscored 29-20. But just when you thought they were going to go down without a fight, they made a run in the final frame behind Kobe Bryant.
However, after Bryant hit a three-pointer with 2:32 remaining to knot the score up at 90 points apiece, the Heat went on a 9-0 run to close out the game.
While the Lakers committed 20 turnovers, the Heat registered only six turnovers. Miami also shot 48 percent from the field, while Los Angeles shot 43 percent.
Player of the Game: LeBron James, SF, Miami Heat
LeBron James did it all once again on Thursday night, posting 39 points, eight assists, seven rebounds, three steals and one block while shooting 17-of-25 from the field.
Up Next for Heat
Miami hosts the Toronto Raptors next Wednesday. The Raptors are 14-25 this season and have lost three straight contests, but they played the Chicago Bulls tough in their last loss.
Up Next for Lakers
Los Angeles visits the Raptors on Sunday. It will be the teams' first matchup of the 2012-2013 campaign.
What are your thoughts about the game?