L.A. Times: It had the makings of an unusual game when a quiet chant of “M-V-P” started in the first period . . . for Lamar Odom.
The Lakers took it from there, sporting several different quirks, playing possum in the first two quarters, then sending clear notice of their arrival in the third quarter, then shrinking way back in the fourth before finally getting past the New Orleans Hornets in overtime, 115-111, Friday at Staples Center.
If it seemed fatiguing, it was, the Lakers avoiding a loss in regulation only after Derek Fisher made a three-pointer that tied the score at 98-98 with 14.6 seconds left in the fourth quarter, and Chris Paul missed a 22-footer with 0.9 seconds left in the fourth quarter.
If it seemed riveting, it was that too, the Lakers clinching victory only after Kobe Bryant made two free throws that both danced around the rim before falling through for the final four-point edge with 3.5 seconds left in overtime.
If the Lakers seemed both enthralled and exhausted afterward, they were.
Bryant lifted his arm exuberantly but also gestured respectfully to Paul, his Olympic teammate, down at the other end of the court.