Lakers' Week 12 in review: Kobe Bryant says farewell to Oakland

The Lakers lost three of four games through Week 12, falling to 9-34 on the season.

The week opened with a 95-91 win over the New Orleans Pelicans on Tuesday at Staples Center.  Both teams have struggled for wins and health this year.  All-Star Kobe Bryant tried to play through an injury but left halfway to rest his sore Achilles tendon.

Outside of Bryant, the Lakers have avoided serious injury. Coach Byron Scott has tried to keep the faith in his team despite the record.

Trainer Garry Vitti would like to Bryant down for a week or two to fully heal, but Bryant has resisted missing games in his final season.

Regardless, the Lakers were able to finish the Pelicans off without Bryant.  Although the team was happy to get a win, too many victories could hurt the Lakers' draft position.

On Thursday, Bryant returned to the court, making his last appearance in Oakland against the Golden State Warriors.

The defending champion Warriors have been the best team in the league this season.  The Lakers failed to keep pace in the second half, falling, 116-98.

Former Lakers player and executive Jerry West, now with the Warriors, reflected on his relationship with Bryant.

Bryant later announced he won't play in the Olympics this summer.  The Lakers have struggled to find the balance between developing their young players with Bryant's farewell.

The Lakers were beaten soundly on Saturday in Utah against the Jazz, 109-82.  On Sunday, the Lakers' strong first half went to waste in a 112-95 loss to the Houston Rockets at Staples Center.

Bryant passed West on the Lakers' all-time assist list.

Meanwhile, the Lakers remain high on Jordan Clarkson and hope Julius Randle's shooting accuracy trends upward.  Ryan Kelly and Tarik Black played well for the D-Fenders in the D-League.

Former Laker Mitch Richmond sold his Calabasas home.  Prosecutors won't charge Lamar Odom after his Nevada brothel weekend.

Finally, Miami Heat center Hassan Whiteside could garner a big pay raise in free agency this summer.

Email Eric Pincus at eric.pincus@gmail.com and follow him on Twitter @EricPincus.

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