Houston Rockets Lose to LA Lakers
4/2/2006 Houston-- Another high-scoring game by Kobe Bryant, another Lakers' milestone.
Bryant scored 43 points Sunday afternoon in Los Angeles' 104-88 victory over Houston. It was his 23rd game of 40 or more points tying a Lakers single-season record set by Elgin Baylor in 1962-63.
Bryant and Yao Ming had a scoring duel in the first half. The Lakers' star had 19 points and Yao 20 to help the Rockets take a 52-51 lead. Bryant took the game over early in the third quarter. He scored 15 points in the first 5:13 of the period and Los Angeles opened a 74-64 lead. He went 9-for-13 in the quarter and the Lakers were up 88-70 heading by the end of the period.
Yao, who finished with 33 points, said: "The third quarter was the turning point. The third quarter when Kobe hit those shots. Those were great shots. I think defensively we did everything we could do, and he just made shots." Rafer Alston had 12 points and Stromile Swift 10 for Houston. The Lakers shot 55 percent, including Bryant's 19-of-32, to the Rockets' 44 percent.