The Los Angeles Lakers came out Wednesday night and played smart, evening the series with the New Orleans Hornets at 1-1. The smart play? Stop Chris Paul. Even if it means giving up the mass scoring by Kobe Bryant. The strategy resulted in a win for the Lakers, 87-78 is the Staples Center and gives Lakers fans a chance to breathe a sight of relief as the prepare for games in New Orleans.
Bryant was on Paul like gravy on rice, keeping the hot hand of the Hornets at 20 points, while on offense, guys like Andrew Bynum and Lamar Odom carried the offensive load. Even Ron Artest got into the act, scoring 15 points. If there’s a formula for beating the Hornets, stopping Chris Paul has to be the main ingredient. Allowed to run free in the last meeting, Paul put up 34 and made the Lakers look sick. It’s a formula that can beat New Orleans anywhere, as they lack enough depth to really get too many points off the bench.