Lakers Swept Out of Playoffs by San Antonio Spurs

The injury-depleted Los Angeles Lakers' season ended Sunday with a 103-82 loss at Staples Center, as the San Antonio Spurs completed a four games to none sweep in their best-of-seven first-round series.

The Lakers never led, were outscored 13-4 to start the game and trailed 26-20 at the end of the first quarter, 52-34 at halftime and 78-58 at the end of the third quarter.

Tony Parker led the Spurs with 23 points, while Kawhi Leonard and reserve DeJuan Blair each added 13.

Pau Gasol led the Lakers with 16, and Andrew Goudelock added 14.

The Lakers made 36 of 76 shots, 47.4 percent, and five of 12 free throws, 41.7 percent, while San Antonio made 36 of 76 shots, 47.4 percent, and 20 of 23 free throws, 87 percent. The Lakers committed 21 turnovers to the Spurs' eight.

This is the second time the Lakers have been swept in an opening round playoff series since they moved to Los Angeles in 1960, joining a 3-0 loss to the then-San Francisco Warriors in 1967.

In addition to starting guards Kobe Bryant and Steve Nash and reserve guards Steve Blake and Jodie Meeks, who all missed Game 3 of the series Friday, the Lakers played without starting forward Metta World Peace, who was sidelined because of a popliteal cyst in his left knee.


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Laker center Dwight Howard was ejected with nine minutes, 51 seconds to play in the third quarter, when he was called for his second technical foul.

Bryant, who tore his left Achilles tendon April 12, took a seat behind the Laker bench shortly after Howard's ejection, drawing a standing ovation from much of the crowd, announced at 18,997, a sellout.

The Lakers entered the season with high hopes following the off-season acquisitions of Howard and Nash, but the team went 0-8 in the preseason and lost four of its first five regular-season games, prompting the firing of coach Mike Brown and the hiring of Mike D'Antoni to replace him.

The team struggled most of the season to post a winning record, finishing 45-37 and not being assured of a playoff berth until the final day of the season.

Copyright CNS - City News Service
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