NBA PLAYOFFS : Scott Helps Lakers Beat Warriors’ Rap, 115-112 : Game 3: Golden State talks big before game but cools off after Run DMC’s introductions. L.A. takes a 2-1 edge in the second-round series.
OK party animals, you can take those funny hats off.
The Warriors enjoyed their Game 2 upset to the max, to the point of having the rap group, Run DMC, introduce them before Friday night’s game. Unamused, the Lakers cooled Run TMC off and won, 115-112, for a 2-1 lead in the NBA Western Conference semifinal series.
With the rap bit, the Warriors’ intro lasted three minutes, making everyone glad they weren’t introducing an 11-man football team.
Meanwhile, the Lakers pawed at the floor, paced in front of their bench, finally taking the court frowning and there went the good times.
“I enjoyed it,” said Mike Dunleavy, icily.
“They’ve got Run DMC, Run TMC, all that stuff,” Byron Scott said. “They were over there smiling and laughing.
“I think we came to play. They came to play, too, I’m not saying they didn’t, but that just got us ready.”
How about making him angry?
“To be honest with you, yes, it did a little bit.”
Here’s how the Lakers won:
Mike Dunleavy switched Magic Johnson onto Tim Hardaway and James Worthy onto Chris Mullin.
The revamped Lakers’ defense held Run TMC, the trio of Hardaway, Mitch Richmond and Mullin to 61 points, compared with Game 2’s 91.
It also knocked down Mullin’s numbers for him, from Game 2’s 41 to Friday’s 13.
Mullin, 16 for 21 in Game 2 while making only three shots inside 20 feet, went four for 14 Friday.
Worthy, the defensive star, also led all scorers with 36. Said Johnson: “James was awesome.”
The Lakers held the Warriors to one field goal in a span of 5:50 late in the third quarter and early in the fourth, breaking open a close game, taking an 11-point lead in the last 3:25.
The Warriors sliced it to 110-108 on Hardaway’s three-point basket.
Scott answered with his own three-pointer.
The Warriors cut it to 113-112 on Sarunas Marciulionis’ six-footer with 37 seconds left.
Scott answered with a 15-footer with 20 seconds left.
Needing a three-pointer to tie, the Warriors got their chance. Hardaway forced up a shot that missed badly but got the ball back when the rebound was batted out.
This time Hardaway’s three-point attempt was long.
The Lakers and Warriors were still rolling on the floor after the rebound when the buzzer went off.
Ask the Lakers, that’s entertainment.
The Warriors had fairly floated into the evening off their upset at the Forum. When they practiced here the next day, members of their front office stood on the sideline and clapped.
Mullin, Richmond and Hardaway had dinner with Run DMC Thursday night.
TMC said DMC could talk, all right.
“Run (a group member) said, ‘I’m getting ready to take you . . . to the hoop,’ ” Hardaway said before the game.
“I said, ‘Did I hear correct?’ ”
For the record, TMC beat DMC, 4-0.
Other highlights off the off day included Coach Don Nelson labeling his team “The Little Train That Could” and Tom Tolbert, saying the slower Lakers’ offense reminded him of “Minnesota with gold uniforms.”
The Warriors hadn’t seen anything yet.
The Lakers went to Worthy and Sam Perkins in their post-up game in earnest. Perkins put Nelson’s first three centers on the bench in foul trouble in the first quarter.
“Earvin said we were just going to be doctors today,” Scott said. “He was going to be the operator.”
Said Johnson: “We were going in to our big men. I told them from Jump Street, if I score 40 points, we can’t win. I knew that. They knew that.”
The Lakers opened an early 13-point lead, led by nine when Johnson rested in the second quarter, led by one 3:31 later when Dunleavy rushed Magic back in.
That was an opportunity Dunleavy wasn’t about to duplicate.
Johnson played the entire second half, 45 minutes in all.
The Lakers led, 57-50, at the half.
The Warriors wiped that out in 1:38 of the third quarter, with three shots.
The teams were on even terms until the Warriors hit a cold stretch. The Lakers took an 81-78 lead at the end of the third quarter and ran it up to 11.
The Warriors made their last run.
Scott’s shots held them off.
“I felt bad about that last game,” Scott said. “I felt bad about the way I played. I didn’t get involved.
“I wasn’t going to let them play five on four tonight.”
Look for a shorter pregame introduction Sunday.