Celtics Win Against Kobe, Lakers [VIDEO]
Kobe Bryant scored a game-high 34 points in his final game against the Boston Celtics, but the Lakers came up short, losing to Boston 107-100 Sunday night at the Staples Center.
The Celtics led by as many as 17 points in the first quarter and went into halftime with a 57-48 lead. The Lakers went on a 13-2 run in the third and ended the quarter trailing 77-75. The Celtics pulled away with a 13-3 fourth quarter run.
In 44 regular season and postseason games against the Celtics, Bryant scored 1,131 points. Over the last 50 years, there are only three players in the Celtics-Lakers rivalry who have scored more points than Bryant: John Havlicek, Jerry West and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.
Isaiah Thomas scored a team-high 26 points, giving him 16 straight games with at least 20 points. The last Celtics player to score 20 points in 16 straight games: Paul Pierce during the 2005-06 season.
Prior to the game, the team announced that Avery Bradly would be absent due to personal reasons. The Boston Herald’s Steve Bulpett said on Twitter that "a new child is involved."
Starting the game in place of Bradley, Evan Turner logged 35 minutes of playing time and scored 17 points. Turner left the game late in the fourth quarter after he was hit in the face while battling for a rebound with Lakers big man Julius Randle.
“He’s got bleeding in his eye,” coach Brad Stevens told reporters after the game. “They’re looking at it. An internist is looking at him. We don’t know the extent of the injury. But clearly he got some eye poke [action]. Hopefully, not too much trauma.”
Jae Crowder returned to the Celtics' starting lineup and scored 22 points. Crowder missed eight games with a high ankle sprain and returned to game action Thursday night against the Portland Trail Blazers. After playing 35 minutes and posting a double-double against the Blazers, Crowder complained of soreness and sat out Friday night's game against the Golden State Warriors.
The Celtics finished a 5-game West Coast road trip at 3-2 and officially clinched a playoff birth with the win. With five games remaining, the Celtics are 45-32 and tied with Atlanta for the 4th seed in the Eastern Conference.
The Celtics will host the New Orleans Pelicans Wednesday night at TD Garden.