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w as a team is good for
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LOS ANGELES -- The Lakers have been giving playoff-contending teams more trouble over the past week than clubs that are way out of contention -- like themselves. Chris Kaman had a season-high 28 points along with 17 rebounds while starting at centre for the vertigo-stricken Pau Gasol, Jodie Meeks scored 22 points, and Los Angeles snapped the Phoenix Suns six-game winning streak with a 115-99 victory Sunday night. It came just five days after the Lakers put a crimp in the New York Knicks post-season plans with a 31-point drubbing at Staples Center. In between that game and this one were a pair of road losses to the league-worst Milwaukee Bucks and the Minnesota Timberwolves, who beat the Lakers by 36 points Friday night. "Were trying to be the player-haters of the year. Thats definitely what were trying to do, and we embrace it," said point guard Kendall Marshall, who had 13 points and 11 assists. "We want to keep teams out of the playoffs and mess up seedings. Thats our motivation right now. Any type of motivation we can get to grow as a team is good for us right now." The undermanned Lakers shot 53 per cent from the field, avoiding what would have been Phoenixs first season sweep over them since 2004-05. The Suns won the first three meetings by an average margin of 13.3 points, including a 117-90 rout on Dec. 23 at US Airways Center. This was the first meeting between the teams in 2 1/2 months. "I dont know if we had a single guy who came with the energy that they usually have," coach Jeff Hornacek said. "Weve had games like this before, where they think theyre just going to show up and win a game. Were not good enough to do that. These guys have been winning games lately because theyve been focused in, but tonight they just werent." The 25-48 Lakers beat a team with a winning record for only the eighth time all season. Gasol missed his fourth straight game because of his ailment, joining Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash, Xavier Henry and Jordan Farmar on the inactive list. Gerald Green scored 22 points off the bench and Goran Dragic added 17 for the Suns, who missed their first 11 shots from 3-point range and finished 8-for-36 from behind the arc against a defence that came in having allowed an average of 119.1 in their previous 16 games and 108.9 overall -- second-worst in the league behind Philadelphia. The Suns shot 38.5 per cent overall. "Theyre not shooting them to miss them," an agitated Hornacek said. "They all thought they were going to make them, and its not always going to be there. So at that point, quit shooting them and drive to the basket." The Suns first loss since March 17 at Brooklyn dropped them to 44-30 and put them into a tie with idle Dallas for seventh place in the Western Conference standings, a half-game ahead of Memphis. "Our schedule gets a lot harder after this," Hornacek said. "Play all the top teams now in the next six or seven games, so thats why this game was so important. I mean, if this happens against Oklahoma City or the Clippers, then fine. But this team is not a playoff team, so thats why its disappointing." Kaman, an 11-year veteran in his first season with the Lakers, secured his sixth double-double of the season before halftime with 18 points and 10 rebounds to help Los Angeles build a 61-43 lead at intermission. "Chris can do that. He has talent, and he came ready to play," coach Mike DAntoni said. Dragic, who came in with a team-best 20.6 scoring average, got seven of the Suns first 13 points -- but didnt get another until his driving layup with 8:39 left in the third quarter trimmed the Lakers lead to 70-48. The Suns, who came in fifth in the league in 3-point shooting at 37.7 per cent, didnt get their first one until Markieff Morris ended their drought with 8:45 left in the second quarter. His brother Marcus drained another one 34 seconds later and Green made a three-point play with 7:41 left in the half, tying it at 31 after Suns trailed by 13. But the Lakers responded with a 28-9 run that included nine points by Meeks, and Ryan Kelly capped the rally with a pair of free throws to give Los Angeles a 59-40 cushion with 1:06 left in the third. The Suns got no closer than 11 points with 3:43 to play. "They made a few runs and killed us. We didnt know how to stop them," Dragic said. "I think our intensity was really bad. Its like no one wants to play in the playoffs -- or at least it seems like that. " NOTES: The longest winning streak in Suns history was 17 games in 2006-07, under DAntoni. ... Kaman received a technical foul from referee Derrick Stafford after getting called for an offensive foul with the Lakers leading 80-55. ... The last time the Lakers hosted Phoenix on Dec. 10, they lost 114-108. That game was one of only six that Bryant has played in this season. ... The Suns are only 16-19 when Dragic is their high-point man. The rest of the time, they are 28-10. Brian Burns Youth Jersey .C. -- The Edmonton Oilers used a late-power-play goal to get a hard-fought road victory. Ryan Kalil Womens Jersey . Yet now its time for the most important pick of them all; the Grey Cup. The thought of going 5-0 with the correct choice is quite intoxicating, I dont think I have ever gone perfect in my CFL futuristic playoff speculations and would take great pride in guessing - I mean analyzing - correctly. http://www.shoppanthersonline.us/panther...ue-jersey/ .  Teams one through twenty competing in Englands top flight are each fatally flawed.  A wide-open, highly competitive and mistake-filled season has followed. Christian McCaffrey Youth Jersey . Portland won Game 4 Sunday night at the Moda Center and are now up 3-1. The last time the Blazers won a playoff series came in the 2000 Western Conference semifinals against the Utah Jazz. Sam Mills Panthers Jersey .28 mph. Logano will start on the front row next to Penske Ford teammate Brad Keselowski, who came in second Friday at 193.099. The Penske drivers swept the top two spots for the second straight race, reversing their qualifying finish in Phoenix a week ago.AVONDALE, La. -- Ben Martin made his way through most of the TPC Louisiana course with the type of sparse gallery one would expect for a player who had missed seven cuts in his previous nine starts on the PGA Tour. The few who followed him, including his mother, father and wife, were treated to a round never before seen at the current home of the Zurich Classic. Martins 10-under 62 in Thursdays opening round broke the course record by two strokes, highlighted by a chip-in from 55 feet and two birdie putts of 20 feet or more. "It was one of those days you dream about," Martin said. "I started the round with two birdies in a row and they just kept rolling in." Martin birdied 10 holes and made pars on the rest. His final birdie came on his chip with a 54-degree sand wedge on the par-3 17th hole, which hugs a water hazard and was made more difficult by afternoon winds. Martin said the challenges that hole posed led him to take a conservative tee shot with a 5-iron rather than a longer club, and the way the 26-year-old South Carolina native executed his plan exemplified the type of day he had. "That was just managing my game. I knew that hole was into the wind with water left," Martin said. "I felt like short of the green was a pretty easy chip." He certainly made it look that way. "Really, everything was working well," Martin said. "It was just one of those days, just like you draw it up." The previous record at TPC Louisiana was a 64, accomplished many times, including on Thursday, when Andrew Svoboda did it to take a lead that held up until Martin surged past late in the day. Peter Hanson and Sueng-Yul Noh were tied for third at 65. Last weekend, Martin matched his career best with a third-place tie in the RBC Heritage at Hilton Head, S.C. He also finished third in early March in the Puerto Rico Open, but missed four cuts after that. Martin opened the Zurich with a 10-foot birdiee putt, the first of six birdies on the front nine, most set up by approach shots within 10 feet.dddddddddddd One exception was his 26-foot birdie putt on No. 5. He opened the back nine with a 14-foot birdie putt, made a 10-footer on 11 and a 20-footer on 13. Svoboda birdied six of his last nine holes. Like Martin, the 34-year-old Svoboda has never won on the PGA Tour. While much can change with three rounds left, New Orleans has seen its share of maiden tour triumphs. It has happened in six of the past nine years, and 10 of the past 16. "Ill take that stat," Svoboda said. Svobodas best career finish on the PGA Tour is a tie for 15th at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open in Las Vegas in October. Hansons round was highlighted by an eagle on the par-4 sixth hole, accomplished with a 6-iron from 183 yards. Erik Compton, Chad Collins and Michael Thompson were tied for fifth at 66, and Jeff Overton, Stuart Appleby and Robert Streb followed at 67. Compton, a two-time heart transplant recipient, spent the early part of the week meeting with children at a New Orleans-area hospital and participated in a junior golf clinic. Although that limited his practice time, he thought it helped his mindset. "It seems to really relax me and really puts things in perspective," Compton said. "I seem to play better during the weeks where I have hospital visits." On the par-5 seventh, his 297-yard drive sailed right of the fairway, crossing a cart path. But he belted a 227-yard shot out of the rough to the foot of the green and two-putted for birdie. He ended his round with a 22-foot birdie putt on nine to briefly put him atop the leaderboard. Compton, also winless on the PGA Tour, said he feels "very comfortable" on New Orleans Pete Dye-designed course. "You have to hit a lot of long iron shots and drive it well here, and those are some of the strengths of my game," he said. ' ' '
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