Kobe, Lakers open eastern trip at Pistons

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Los Angeles Lakers begin an eastern road trip Tuesday night with a visit to The Palace of Auburn Hills to face the Detroit Pistons.

The Lakers halted a four-game losing streak Sunday with a home victory over the Eastern Conference-leading Toronto Raptors. LA prevailed, 129-122, in overtime thanks to a heroic effort from Kobe Bryant.

Bryant registered his 20th career triple-double for the Lakers with 31 points, 12 assists and 11 rebounds, while also becoming the first NBA player in history to record 30,000 points and 6,000 assists.

"Our guys were in great rhythm and that opened up the game for me," said Bryant. "We shot the ball with confidence tonight and that makes it easier for everybody.

Nick Young deposited a season-high 20 points and Carlos Boozer added 18 points and nine rebounds in the win. Jordan Hill registered a double-double with 16 points and 12 boards. Wesley Johnson (13), Jeremy Lin (11) and Wayne Ellington (10) rounded out the double-figure scorers for the Lakers.

"It feels great," Young said. "This is something we needed. I felt like I got my swag back tonight."

The Lakers will visit the Washington Wizards and Boston Celtics on this trek and are just 2-5 on the road this season.

The Pistons have dropped eight straight, including all three on this current homestand. Detroit has lost six straight at The Palace and owns the second- worst record in the Eastern Conference behind only the lowly Philadelphia 76ers.

Last time out, the Pistons fell, 104-93, at home to the Golden State Warriors on Sunday.

Brandon Jennings tallied 22 points and six assists, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope netted 23 points and Greg Monroe supplied 13 points and 10 boards for Detroit, which hasn't won since an overtime victory in Oklahoma City on Nov. 14.

"We've got a real problem scoring in the paint and even closer," said Pistons coach Stan Van Gundy. "I don't have an answer to that."

The Pistons shot 36.3 percent from the field and were outscored in the paint, 46-32, by the Warriors. A change in the starting lineup did nothing to jump- start their offense as Kyle Singler, who replaced Monroe in the first five, managed nine points.

The Pistons have scored over 100 points just once this season and rank 28th in the NBA in scoring at 91.9 ppg.

The Lakers have won the last four meetings between these two teams and are 9-1 in the last 10 matchups. LA is 5-1 in its last six trips to The Palace.