The feisty Raptors kept it close until late, but Kobe's well-rounded 34-7-7 proved insurmountable in the Lakers' 117-108 triumph, reports the Los Angeles Times. Nonetheless, diminutive guard T.J. Ford did surprising damage inside, slashing for 28 points in the absence of bruising All-Star Chris Bosh. Also in pro basketball:
- The Suns evened their record to 5-5 since the Shaq trade, sandblasting the Grizzlies 132-111 behind Amare Stoudemire's 29 points and 13 boards.
- The Bulls closed in on the eighth playoff seed with a 108-96 upset of the Jazz at home, an ill-auguring start to Utah's five-game roadtrip.