After a competitive first half, the Lakers fell to the Houston Rockets, 112-95, on Sunday night at Staples Center.
James Harden, who helped put the Lakers away during a 34-18 third quarter, led all scorers with 31 points. The All-Star guard wasn't needed in the fourth.
Kobe Bryant played through a sore Achilles' tendon to hand out nine assists, seven in the first quarter, when the Lakers opened a 36-32 lead. The veteran also scored five points but turned the ball over four times in 24 minutes.
Julius Randle returned to the Lakers' starting lineup with Larry Nance Jr. sidelined because of a sore knee. In 26 minutes, Randle...