Brooklyn, NY (SportsNetwork.com) - Paul Pierce's uncontested 3-pointer rimmed out in the final seconds as the Los Angeles Lakers topped the Brooklyn Nets, 99-94, from Barclays Center.
Brooklyn trailed by 27 points early in the contest and never led but battled back to tie the score behind Mirza Teletovic, who netted a career-high 17 points in the setback. Teletovic stuffed Wesley Johnson at the rim and scored four straight points with a triple and 1-of-2 from the line to knot the score at 92 apiece with just under four minutes on the clock.
The Lakers regained the lead on Johnson's steal and breakaway dunk with 1:33 to play, and Brooklyn missed four shots in a row until Alan Anderson's dunk cut it to 95-94 with 10 seconds remaining.
Jodie Meeks sank a pair of free throws before Pierce found space at the top and unleashed the potential game-tying trey, which was off the mark. Xavier Henry corralled the rebound and drained two at the line for the final margin.
Nick Young led the Lakers, who have won four of five, with a season-high 26 points off the bench. Pau Gasol added 21 points while Steve Blake handed out 10 assists.
"I thought Nick Young hit some huge shots," Lakers head coach Mike D'Antoni said. "He played really well to kind of get us out of our funk."
Joe Johnson paced Brooklyn with 18 points. Pierce scored 12 but struggled shooting, converting just 4-of-17 from the field.
"It's frustrating when the ball doesn't go your way, but eventually I know these shots throughout the course of 82 games are going to fall for me," Pierce said.
Young finished the first quarter on a personal 9-0 run, during which the Nets turned the ball over on three straight possessions. LA led 34-18 after the first.
The second quarter started with Jordan Farmar netting nine straight points on three treys in 1:10 to cap an 18-0 Lakers' surge that spanned both periods. Kevin Garnett finally halted the run with a jumper, ending a 4 1/2 minute scoreless draught for Brooklyn.
The Nets settled down out of a timeout and stormed back with a 15-0 run before Blake found Meeks for a driving layup to end the charge. Neither team shot well in the second and the Lakers took a 54-40 lead into the locker rooms.
Pierce scored 10 in the third and his layup in the final minute had the Nets within single digits heading into the final period. Teletovic opened the fourth with a triple, and Brooklyn was competitive the rest of the way.
The Nets haven't beaten LA since Nov. 27, 2007, when current head coach Jason Kidd led them with 15 points and 14 assists ... Alan Anderson and Andray Blatche scored 14 points apiece for Brooklyn ... Jordan Hill had a game-high 12 rebounds for the Lakers ... Both teams had 21 assists.