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Lakers 88, Pacers 87

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LOS ANGELES — Guard Kobe Bryant scored the game-winning basket with 12.4 seconds remaining, lifting the Los Angeles Lakers to an 88-87 victory over the Indiana Pacers on Sunday at Staples Center.

Bryant finished with 20 points, six assists and six rebounds as the Lakers (11-23) ended a three-game losing streak. Guard Nick Young scored a game-high 22 points for Los Angeles.

Guards C.J. Miles scored 19 points and Donald Sloan had 16 to lead the Pacers (13-22), who had a two-game winning streak snapped.

A 3-pointer by Bryant gave Los Angeles an 84-82 lead with two minutes left. However, Pacers forward Solomon Hill answered with a trey 22 seconds later to give Indiana the lead back.

Two free throws by Bryant made it 86-85 for the Lakers with 1:26 left, but Sloan put the Pacers back on top with a jumper at 1:01.

Bryant scored on a jump hook to clinch it for Los Angeles. Indiana had one last shot, but the Lakers forced center Roy Hibbert to take a contested shot near the top of the key that missed badly at the final horn.

Carlos Boozer and Hibbert had to be separated after the Lakers forward pushed the Pacers center to the floor with 5:55 left and Hibbert jumped up to retaliate. Boozer was handed a flagrant-1 foul, while Hibbert was nailed with a technical.

The Lakers skated out to a 9-2 lead on seven points from Bryant, but the Pacers finished the opening quarter with a flourish. They converted six of eight 3-pointers, three of them by Miles, and closed with a 14-0 run for a 28-15 cushion after one period. Miles had 11 points in the first.

However, Young led the Lakers’ rally, scoring all 12 of his first-half points in the second quarter and nailing a 3-pointer at the halftime horn to cut the margin to 48-41.

The Lakers prevailed despite getting outrebounded 50-37, including a 16-5 edge for the Pacers on the offensive end.

Los Angeles lost forward Wesley Johnson in the second quarter to a strained right hip flexor. He won’t play Monday night when the Lakers visit the Portland Trail Blazers, and he will undergo an MRI exam.

NOTES: Lakers G Kobe Bryant will not travel to Portland for Monday’s contest against the Trail Blazers. Coach Byron Scott decided it was best to rest Bryant, who missed three consecutive games last month due to fatigue, and avoid playing him in back-to-back games. “You guys might think he probably argued about it and all of that, but he said it sounded good to him,” the coach said. … The Lakers held a moment of silence for ESPN anchor Stuart Scott, who died Sunday morning of cancer. … Pacers G C.J. Watson missed his second consecutive game with a sore left foot. G George Hill also missed his second game with a sore left groin. … Los Angeles improved to 34-8 at home against Indiana. … The Pacers resume their road trip Monday at the Utah Jazz.

Up to the minute news and reports from the news wire of The Sports Xchange.

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