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LEADING OFF
June 24, 2010
THE BIG PICTURE
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June 24, 2010

Leading Off

THE BIG PICTURE

Though the Celtics maintained a lead throughout much of the Finals' Game 7, the Staples Center crowd kept faith, standing as Ron Artest led the Lakers on a break early in the fourth quarter. Artest would score six of his 20 points in the final period, including a late three-pointer that put L.A. up 79-73 in what would be an 83-79 win.

RIM AND RIGOR

Guard Kobe Bryant repeatedly drove to the net, averaging 28.6 points in the Finals, with a high of 38 in Game 5. Bryant continued to go to the hoop when his shooting touch failed him (6 for 24) in Game 7; his 15 boards in the finale were second only to Pau Gasol's 18, as L.A. decisively outrebounded Boston 53-40.

TAKE IT FROM ME

Magic Johnson handed the championship trophy to Kobe Bryant as his Lakers teammates and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (top right) looked on. It wasn't Bryant's only Magic moment of the Finals: Earlier Johnson called him the NBA's best player. Kobe has won five titles, the same number that Magic and Kareem each won as Lakers.

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