Lakers defeat Warriors in San Diego exhibition game


By City News Service

The Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Golden State Warriors, 120-99, Thursday night in their annual appearance at San Diego’s Valley View Casino Center, even with Kobe Bryant not playing in the exhibition game.

Bryant was given the night off by coach Phil Jackson as he continues to recover from off-season surgery on his right knee. Bryant told KCAL9 that he would play Friday night as the Lakers conclude exhibition play against the Warriors in Ontario.

Bryant had started all six of the Lakers’ exhibition games before tonight.

Pau Gasol scored 23 points and Steve Blake added 18 off the bench, making eight of 10 shots and having a game-high seven assists, for the Lakers (3-4). Stephen Curry led Golden State (3-4) with 19.

The Lakers scored the game’s first 10 points and led 30-25 at the end of the first quarter, 55-52 at halftime and 86-76 at the end of the third quarter before a crowd announced at 11,150.

Laker forward Luke Walton, a University of San Diego High School graduate, played for the first time during the preseason, scoring five points and having two assists and one rebound in 11 minutes of play.

Walton had been sidelined because of a moderate strain to his right hamstring.

The Lakers have been scheduled to play an exhibition game in San Diego each year since 1999. The 2007 game was canceled because of the wildfires burning throughout San Diego County.