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(AP) – asdas The Los Angeles Lakers made a minor lineup adjustment which paid huge dividends to help end their recent skid, while the Philadelphia 76ers have been forced to play without one of their top players.
The Los Angeles Lakers made a minor lineup adjustment which paid huge dividends to help end their recent skid, while the Philadelphia 76ers have been forced to play without one of their top players.
Los Angeles looks for its second win against Philadelphia in 14 days when the Lakers host the 76ers on Friday night.
The Lakers (22-10) ended a three-game losing streak Wednesday with a 103-88 win against New Orleans, using Lamar Odom off the bench for the first time this season.
Odom, who was replaced in the starting lineup by Andrew Bynum, responded with a team-high 24 points. It was the most by a Lakers player coming off the bench since Tierre Brown had 27 in Feb. 7, 2005.
Bynum also took advantage of the increased minutes, scoring 18 points on 8-of-12 shooting.
“Some people could have took that personally,” Odom said. “It didn’t matter to me, honestly.”
The dominating victory got the Lakers back on track after losing three straight by an average of 16.7 points.
“We played much better. We executed much better. Our defense did an excellent job,” Bryant said. “(Bynum) makes a big difference plugging up the middle, rebounding. He’s moving better. … He seems to be more stable, more active.”
Bynum missed 24 games after undergoing knee surgery in late October.
Odom scored a season-high 28 points and played 42 minutes in a 93-81 victory over the 76ers on Dec. 17. The Lakers outscored Philadelphia 35-19 in the fourth quarter, despite Kobe Bryant being held to a season-low nine points on 3-for-11 shooting.
Andre Iguodala scored 18 for Philadelphia, but he’s missed the last two games with recurring tendinitis in his right Achilles’. He sat out five games in November with the same injury.
Evan Turner, who has struggled since Philadelphia (13-19) made him the No. 2 pick in June’s draft, stepped up in Iguodala’s absence Wednesday and scored a career-high 23 points in a 123-110 victory in Phoenix.
Turner is averaging only 6.8 points in 24.1 minutes, prompting coach Doug Collins to sit down with his young player and discuss his play.
“The team talked to me earlier and said I just needed to step up and I was just looking for my own shot a little bit,” said the former Ohio State standout.
Jrue Holiday had his third straight 20-point performance, scoring 25 for Philadelphia, which is 3-3 on its season-high eight-game road trip. Andres Nocioni added 22 points and 12 rebounds.
“That was about as complete a win as we’ve had all season long,” Collins said.
Philadelphia expects guard Lou Williams to return to the lineup after missing the last two for the birth of his daughter. Williams is fourth on the team with 11.8 points per game, one of five players averaging in double figures.
Los Angeles has won six of seven against the 76ers, but Bryant – a Philadelphia native – has scored fewer than 20 in three of the last four.