LOS ANGELES, February 27 – Kobe Bryant scored 22 points and passed out eight assists here Thursday to spark the Los Angeles Lakers past Phoenix 132-106 for their sixth National Basketball Association victory in a row.
Bryant scored 13 points and went 6-of-6 from the field in the first quarter, which ended with a 22-6 Lakers run for a 39-26 edge that the Suns never overcame.
Lamar Odom led the Lakers with 23 points and grabbed nine rebounds while Spain’s Pau Gasol scored 16 points and pulled down nine rebounds. Every Laker scored at least three points as the team hit 54-of-94 shots.
Leandro Barbosa sparked Phoenix with 18 points, seven assists and six boards while former Laker Shaquille O’Neal finished with 12 points and seven rebounds, but the Suns struggled without injured guard Steve Nash and top scorer
Amare Stoudemire, out for the season after right eye surgery.
Nash missed the game with a right ankle injury suffered in the third quarter of a victory Tuesday over Charlotte.
The Canadian veteran is averaging 14.1 points and 9.7 assists a game this season.
The Lakers improved to a league-best 48-10 on a night when starters skipped most of the second quarter and returned in the third to put away the Suns. The Laker bench stretched the lead as larger as 28 points in the fourth quarter.