Here are your 10 additional things to take away from the Lakers’ 117-89 win over the Golden State Warriors on Sunday ...
With the Lakers flirting with perfection every night now, it's a darn shame they dropped those two games to the Nuggets and Suns last week. A 14-0 team record would look more appropriate paired with the splendid shooting line that Pau Gasol posted Sunday, a game after Matt Barnes went 7-for-7 from the field in Minnesota.
Gasol went 10-for-10 from the floor and 8-for-8 from the line to finish with 28 points, nine rebounds, five assists and four blocks against Golden State.
"He definitely topped me," Barnes said.
Here are some stats to put the night in perspective:
- It was the sixth time in franchise history that a Lakers player finished the game perfect from the field after 10 or more field goal attempts. The last to do it was Byron Scott in 1986 (10-of-10). It was also reached by current GM Mitch Kupchak (11-of-11), Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (11-of-11; twice) and Wilt Chamberlain (14-of-14).
- Barnes joined Charles Barkley as the only other player in NBA history to post a minimum 20-point, five-rebound, five-assist night while not missing a single shot and Gasol joined him a game later.
- According to ESPN Stats & Research's Kenton Wong, the last two times two different teammates had perfect nights while attempting seven or more field goals were Phoenix's Boris Diaw (8-of-8) and Leandro Barbosa, Indiana's Dale Davis (7-of-7) on March 1 and 3, 2006 and (9-of-9) and Antonio Davis (7-of-7) on Jan. 7 and 10, 1997.
"I'm always trying to be efficient and effective at all times," Gasol said. "Matt told me, 'Welcome to the club.'"
The Lakers started the second quarter with four reserves on the court -- Steve Blake, Shannon Brown, Matt Barnes and Derrick Caracter -- and one starter -- Lamar Odom. It wasn't an accident that Odom was the one front line guy working with the second unit. Andrew Bynum is nearing a return and any work the big lefty can get with the Killer B's now will only help that transition when Bynum gets back.
"There's got to be a leader that has the ability to kind of settle them in," Lakers coach Phil Jackson said. "Lamar really is our rebounder, we need him out there in those type of situations and he can help Derrick get along and get through it."
The rookie Caracter coughed up four turnovers (a game after having five) and fouled out in 17 minutes.
In the past Odom was relied heavily upon to be the sole leader organizing the Lakers' "Bench Mob", but on the team's new "Renegades" unit, Brown said everybody can bring that to the table.
"I think we're all leaders," Brown said. "We're all guys who know what's going on, we're all guys who want to win, we're all guys that want to go out there and do what's best for the team. We know we have one common goal and that's winning and winning championships so I think everything is going to fall in place like it should."
So, how's that big man search coming, coach?
"We’re looking into that," Jackson said before the game. "We hope to get something settled this week."
Former Laker Vladimir Radmanovic scored nine points in 19 minutes for Golden State. Despite referring to him as a "space cadet" before Vlad Rad was sent to Charlotte in the Brown deal two seasons ago, Jackson said he actually missed the 6-10 forward.
When asked if Radmanovic ranked on his "All-Interesting Guys" list composed of players he once coached, Jackson replied, "definitely."
"Vladi is one of my favorite sons," Jackson said. "He’s an unusual basketball player, but he’s a very interesting person. ... You miss kind of the erratic things he’d do that just kind of give you a chuckle on the bench."
As for the qualifiers on his current team to make the list, Jackson pointed to Ron Artest and Sasha Vujacic.
"I know [Vujacic] irritates a lot of people, for me, it’s kind of a humorous thing," Jackson said.
Jackson made sure to sugar coat the comments to let reporters know that he wasn't trying to stick it to the seldom-used guard.
"There’s a respect we have for Sasha’s game," he said. "There’s something he does that we’ll probably need during the course of this season."
Here's a connection between the two teams you probably didn't know about: What do Warriors center Andris Biedrins and Lakers trainer Alex McKechnie have to do with each another? Read about it in item No. 8 in the Daily Dime.
Lakers fans got a long look at what could have been one of their backup guards this season had the team not re-signed Shannon Brown. Warriors rookie Jeremy Lin had the best game of his short career, finishing with season highs in points (13) and minutes (18) while also collecting three rebounds, two assists and two steals. Lin had just seven total points in his first six games played this year.
"[Playing for the Lakers] was something that was brought up when I was trying to decide which team to sign with, so I definitely thought about that," Lin said about envisioning himself in purple and gold.
Warriors coach Keith Smart said Lin, who has a guaranteed contract for 2010-11 and a partially guaranteed deal next year, is a hard worker.
"He wants to be better," Smart said. "He wants to have a chance to be an NBA player."
Devin Ebanks was sporting a new tattoo on the top of his right hand: a small shield-shaped highway sign with the word "QUEENS" inked at the top of the sign and "89" branded below it in black ink, representing his birth city and year. Man, that's young.
Derek Fisher provided an update on the Thursday conference call he had to discuss collective bargaining agreement negotiations. Fisher, the president of the National Basketball Players Association said the close to two-hour meeting went well. What had planned to be a two-on-two meeting with Fisher and NBAPA executive Billy Hunter speaking with NBA commissioner David Stern and deputy commissioner Adam Silver grew to include three more people: an economist representing each side, as well as San Antonio Spurs owner Peter Holt serving as the voice for the league's 30 owners. Fisher said the same group plans to hold their next meeting together in December.
Quotes of the night: "They have to plan for things like this. They know about it and I tell them when the football stadium gets built, it’s only going to get worse." -- Jackson on the traffic his team faced coming to Staples Center caused by the American Music Awards, taking place across the street.
"Understand something: This team here, the Lakers, they're playing for a bigger prize ... This is a game on their schedule for a better seed [in the playoffs], so they're playing for something bigger." -- Smart, the Warriors' coach.
Stats of the night: The Warriors averaged 113 points a game in their previous two gamess and the Lakers held them to 89. The last time the two teams met this season, Golden State came in averaging 120.5 points and Los Angeles held the Warriors to 83. ... The Lakers outscored the high-paced Warriors 29-8 in fastbreak points. ... Brown scored 17 points and shot 3-for-3 on 3-pointers. It was the second time this season he went a perfect 3-for-3 from beyond the arc and the fifth time he hit three or more triples in a game. ... Kobe Bryant sat out the fourth quarter, logging fewer than 30 minutes for the fourth time this season.
Dave McMenamin covers the Lakers for ESPNLosAngeles.com. Follow him on Twitter.