Rookie Gordon Hayward scored a career-high 22 points and hit the go-ahead free throw with 6 seconds to play, and the Utah Jazz snapped an eight-game losing streak with an 86-85 victory over the sleepwalking Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday night.
Kobe Bryant scored 20 points and hit a tying 3-pointer with 16 seconds left, but fumbled the ball away on an ill-conceived drive at the buzzer.
With a listless performance in their second straight loss following a 17-1 stretch, the Lakers might have lost the chance to catch San Antonio atop the Western Conference standings. The Spurs have a 3½-game lead with five games left for Los Angeles.
Paul Millsap scored 22 points for the Jazz, who had a five-point lead with 90 seconds left before Bryant got the Lakers back in it with two 3-pointers. Although the Jazz would have to finish the season with four more victories to avoid just their second losing season in 28 years, they avoided their first nine-game losing streak in these clubs' second meeting in five days.
Rookie Derrick Favors had 14 points and 11 rebounds for the Jazz, who held on for their first road win over the Lakers since Jan. 1, 2006, a span of 17 games in the regular season and playoffs.
Pau Gasol scored 12 of his 19 points in the first quarter while playing through a bone bruise in his right knee for Los Angeles.
Andrew Bynum had 12 points, a career-high 23 rebounds and four blocked shots for the Lakers, who missed their first 13 3-point attempts and made 19 turnovers — none more costly than Bryant's apparent bobble off his knee at the top of the key against Hayward's defense with the game on the line.
The Lakers' impressive nine-game winning streak ended Sunday with a loss to playoff-bound Denver in Los Angeles' third game in less than four days. The Lakers didn't have the excuse of exhaustion against the Jazz: They just didn't appear interested until Bryant, who didn't make a field goal in the first half, rallied them in the final minutes.
Hayward scored 14 points in the second half, showing a whole lot more poise than his former Butler teammates did in Monday's NCAA title game. His dunk in traffic with 3:25 to play put the Jazz ahead for good, and Earl Watson hit a big 3-pointer with 2:40 left.
The Lakers again showed their predilection for overlooking opponents during a season already featuring losses to Sacramento, Cleveland and Milwaukee, among other lottery-bound clubs.
The Lakers had a season-low 57 points through three quarters and couldn't make a 3-pointer until Lamar Odom banked one in early in the fourth. The Jazz easily could have taken charge, but made head-shaking mistakes such as Millsap's attempt to pass to an official in the fourth quarter.
Devin Harris missed the game for Utah with a strained right hamstring, and Kyrylo Fesenko also sat out with a sprained right thumb. The Ukrainian center made his first start of the season against the Lakers last Friday, earning Bryant's ire when he flung the ball at the All-Star game MVP's feet.
Raja Bell, who rejected Bryant's personal overtures last summer and signed a three-year free-agent deal with the Jazz, missed his third straight game with a sprained right foot.
NOTES: The Lakers split their season series with Utah after winning the past four series. ... Bynum set his career high in rebounds midway through the third quarter, but he also missed eight of his first nine shots. ... Fans near courtside included David Beckham, singer Ray J and Carrie Fisher, who sat with director Penny Marshall.