Auburn Hills, MI (SportsNetwork.com) - Jordan Hill put up 22 points and 13 rebounds and the Los Angeles Lakers remained unbeaten against the Eastern Conference with a 106-96 win over the Detroit Pistons on Tuesday.
Kobe Bryant finished with 12 points and 13 assists but was responsible for 10 of the 14 Lakers turnovers. Bryant posted the unofficial triple-double two days after recording the 20th legitimate one of his career.
Nick Young added 19 points off the bench as the Lakers won their fourth straight against the East to start the season. They are just 1-13 against the West.
Josh Smith filled the stat sheet with 18 points, 10 rebounds and six assists and Andre Drummond pulled down 13 boards, but Detroit lost its ninth game in a row. The struggling Pistons have dropped six home games in that stretch, their longest since a 10-game slide in March, 2013.
"We have enough talent to win games, but we don't have enough talent to overcome lack of effort," said Pistons head coach Stan Van Gundy.
Only the winless 76ers have a worse record than the Pistons, who fell to 3-15 on the season.
The Lakers built on their 46-45 halftime lead with a dominant third quarter. Wesley Johnson and Jeremy Lin hit 3-pointers in the early stages of the period to set the tone for LA, which outscored Detroit 35-20 in the frame to pull away.
It was 60-52 following a Kentavious Caldwell-Pope free throw at 7:03. Then, Bryant took over.
Van Gundy was given a technical foul, and Bryant made the free throw. He then drew a foul on Caldwell-Pope and sank two more. Back-to-back steals led to a transition layup and deep triple for Bryant. For good measure, he canned a pull-up jumper to end a string of 10 points in just over a minute.
"That first half, I missed a couple of easy ones," Bryant said. "Came out in the second half and just let the game come to me. Made a couple shots. Then I was able to step on the gas a little bit."
The lead ballooned to 21 points following three Young free throws, and Los Angeles led by at least seven the rest of the way.
It was 19-19 after one quarter of play. D.J. Augustin scored at the rim late in the second to give Detroit its largest lead of four points, 35-31, but the Lakers took a one-point lead into halftime after Hill's hook shot in the closing seconds.
Bryant committed 10-plus turnovers for the fourth time in his career and second against Detroit ... The Lakers have won five straight and 10 of 11 against the Pistons ... Carlos Boozer had 14 points and seven rebounds for LA.