Now with basketball back in action, Laker Nation has decided to continue to take you back through Laker history to recap important games, record-breaking performances and memorable news from the past 64 years of the franchise.
NOVEMBER 28, 2003
SAN ANTONIO SPURS 87 – LA LAKERS 103
MALONE OLDEST TO SCORE TRIPLE-DOUBLE
For all the hate that the Miami Heat received during their quest for a dream team, it’s easy to forget the dream team of former rivals that the Lakers assembled for the 2003-04 season. Former Supersonic Gary Payton, who had been knocking the Lakers out of the playoffs throughout the mid-1990s, and former Jazz Karl Malone, whose team would always leave with the upperhand throughout the beginning of the Shaq-Kobe era, would join the Lakers for one-year deals in a quest to win an elusive title.
Having been ousted in the playoffs the previous year by the San Antonio Spurs, the Lakers’ first matchup with San Antonio in November was sure to be full of emotion. Spurs forward Tim Duncan, after receiving a patented Karl Malone elbow to the cheek, would miss seven of his 10 field goal attempts. Malone, in turn, would take a foot to the face from Malik Rose, opening up a gash on his mouth halfway through the first quarter.
With such a stacked lineup, Laker Devean George would score a season-high 19 points, shooting 8-for-9 mostly left open on perimeter shots. Guards Kobe Bryant and Gary Payton would each score 17 points in the 103-87 dismantling of the Spurs, but the performance of the 18-year-veteran Karl Malone would be most impressive. Malone would score 10 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists in only 26 minutes to become the oldest player in NBA history to score a triple-double. It would be Malone’s fourth career triple-double and his first in more than three years.
Quote of the Night: “It’s more important that we keep this thing going. Sure, it was a big game. With all the hoopla, maybe it was one of the big games of the year. But there’ll be more big ones. Hopefully, in June.” -Laker forward Karl Malone, on his team’s performance in a 103-87 home win over the defending champion San Antonio Spurs. - From the LA Times, Nov. 29, 2003