NEW ORLEANS (Reuters) - All-Stars Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol combined to score 66 points and lead the twice defending NBA champion Los Angeles Lakers to a 101-95 win against the New Orleans Hornets on Saturday.

The Lakers squandered a 14-point lead in the third quarter but fought back in the last four minutes of the game, outscoring the Hornets 9-3 in that span to secure the victory at New Orleans Arena.

Spanish center Gasol scored a season-high 34 points and Bryant added 32, including a key three-pointer with 3:20 remaining to give the Lakers the lead for good.

Paul led the Hornets with 21 points, Delonte West added 16 and the Hornets bench scored 39 points including 14 by Marcus Thornton.

(Reporting by Mike Mouat in Windsor, Ontario; editing by Mark Lamport-Stokes)