BY Ron Howell | SportingAlert.com
Published on Dec. 23, 2012 9 a.m. CST . 1 comment
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OAKLAND, Calif. (Sporting Alert) — Lakers vs Warriors tonight” href=”http://sportingalert.com/2012/12/steve-nash-start-lakers-warriors-tonight/”>Steve Nash scored 12 points and dished out nine assists on his return from injury and the Lakers on top in crazy finish with Bobcats, as Gasol returns” href=”http://sportingalert.com/2012/12/lakers-top-crazy-finish-bobcats-gasol-returns/”>LoLakers on top in crazy finish with Bobcats, as Gasol returns” href=”http://sportingalert.com/2012/12/lakers-top-crazy-finish-bobcats-gasol-returns/”>s Angeles Lakers scored an overtime 118-115 win over the Golden State Warriors on Saturday night.
Nash, who was “hopeful for Saturday, but certain for a Christmas Day” return for the first time since breaking a bone in his left leg, which saw him missed 24 games, started and played for almost 41 minutes, the second highest for a Lakers (13-14) player on the night.
“There’s some soreness and some pain, but right now it’s OK,” the veteran Lakers point guard, who shot 5-of-8 from the field, including 2-of-2 from three point range said after the game.
“It’s manageable. As long as it’s manageable I’ll just keep going.”
Kobe Bryant, who started the game slowly and shot just 5-of-17 for 11 points in the first half, eventually went on to score a game-high 34 points and added 10 rebounds in the win at Oracle Arena.
It was the eighth straight game that Bryant scored 30 or more points this year.
The star guard, who hit some big shots in the fourth quarter in a massive Lakers run, was delighted with the return of Nash and he added that it was “very easy” to play with the former Phoenix ball handler.
“It’s easy. It’s very easy. It’s beyond easy,” Bryant said in reference to playing with Nash.
“You put two guys together who can do opposite things and it fits extremely well.
“When I get a rebound, I look to get the ball in his hands because I know I will be getting an easy shot.”
Metta World Peace hit 20 points and Jordan Hill added 14 points and eight rebounds from reserve roles for the Lakers, which grabbed its fourth straight win.
Star center Dwight Howard got into early foul trouble on a “whistle happy” night for the officials before fouling out in overtime. He scored just 11 points.
Pau Gasol had 10 rebounds, nine points and six assists.
Meanwhile, a spirited Jarrett Jack finished with 29 points and 11 assists off the bench and David Lee supported 20 points and 11 rebounds in the defeat for the Golden State Warriors (18-10), which committed 10 of its 19 total turnovers in the first quarter alone.
Point guard Stephen Curry ended with 20 points, eight rebounds and seven assists, while David Lee, who got off to a fast start collected 20 points and 11 boards.
Elsewhere, Klay Thompson contributed 18 points and Harrison Barnes added 13 for the Warriors in the defeat.
Golden State took a 90-76 lead with ten-minutes left in the game, but were unable to keep the lead as the Lakers came rushing back.
“They started making shots and we didn’t take care of the basketball,” said Warriors coach Mark Jackson.
“You look back and realize that one defensive rebound, one well executed defensive trip, one less turnover and we are out of here before overtime.
“It’s disappointing the way the fourth quarter went, but Kobe Bryant has a history of making shots. He did that tonight.”
Next on the NBA Lakers schedule is a Christmas Day fixture against the New York Knicks on Tuesday. The full playing schedule can be found on Lakers.com.
After 28 games in the Los Angeles Lakers 2011 shortened schedule, they were 16-12.