LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Utah Jazz got a preview of their first-round playoff series against the Los Angeles Lakers and didn't like what they saw.
Andrew Bynum scored 22 points in his best game since returning from a knee injury and the Lakers won 125-112 Tuesday night to close the regular season with their 65th victory.
"I feel well-rested," he said. "I think I have a great chance to help push us over the hump."
Los Angeles tied a season high with 69 points in the second half against a team that didn't threaten in the fourth quarter.
"They got hot," said Deron Williams, who led the Jazz with 25 points and 13 assists. "I did a double-take myself; I looked up and I thought it was a 10-point game, but it was 20. They can score points in a hurry."
This season's Lakers became the third-winningest team in franchise history, tying the 1986-87 team for victories while trailing only the 1971-72 squad (69) and 1999-00 team (67).
"Sixty-five wins with some of the injuries we've had is an accomplishment," Kobe Bryant said.
Pau Gasol added 20 points and nine rebounds, Bryant and Lamar Odom had 16 points each, and Sasha Vujacic 15 points for the Lakers, who won their sixth in a row at home.
Reserve Andrei Kirilenko added 20 points to go with 16 points by Carlos Boozer and 14 by Ronnie Brewer for Utah.
The Lakers open the playoffs this weekend against the Jazz, who ended their schedule in the eighth and final Western Conference playoff spot.
"We didn't give them much of a battle and knowing that we're going to have to play them again, it looks pretty bleak," Utah coach Jerry Sloan said. "Hate to say that, but it's one of those things."
The Lakers improved to 16-3 all-time against Utah at Staples Center, where they've won the last six in a row against the Jazz at home.
"There's a whole new season starting. Everybody's healthy, so we'll get everybody on the same page and see what it's all about," Sloan said. "We're just like a little dent in the road as far as they're concerned. They're very comfortable playing against us, and obviously they should be."
The Lakers already clinched the top seed in the West to secure home-court advantage through the conference finals. But Cleveland edged them for the league's best record, guaranteeing LeBron James and Co. home court through the NBA finals if the Cavaliers get there.
"We had two goals," Vujacic said. "Finish first in the regular season and we didn't do that, but we have the ultimate goal and that's most important. We have 16 games ahead of us to win."
Los Angeles took the game's first double-digit lead, 94-83, on Jordan Farmar's 3-pointer to open the fourth quarter. It was part of a 13-2 run that included treys by Bryant and Vujacic and pushed the Lakers' lead to 104-85.
They never looked back, with Bryant going to the bench to rest up for what he hopes is a repeat trip to the NBA finals.
The Lakers started the third quarter on a 12-4 run, with Bryant assisting on 3-pointers by Trevor Ariza and Derek Fisher, to go up 68-59.
But the Jazz answered with a 15-7 spurt, including nine in a row, and closed to 75-74. Williams scored six and Brewer added five during the run.
The Lakers responded over the final 2:42, outscoring the Jazz 16-9 to take a 91-83 lead into the fourth. Bryant scored six points and assisted on another 3-pointer, this one by Shannon Brown.Celtics 100, 76ers 98
At Philadelphia, Paul Pierce hit the winning jumper, scored 31 points and hindered the 76ers' shot at the Eastern Conference's sixth playoff seed.
Kevin Garnett missed the meaningless game for Boston to rest his strained knee and Ray Allen served a one-game suspension. Pierce made seven 3-pointers to overcome the absence of the two All-Stars, which had to make the Sixers wonder how they could win a first-round series against a loaded and focused Celtics team.
The Celtics already had the second seed in the East locked up and could face the Sixers in the first round. The Sixers, though, could move up a spot to sixth and play Orlando if they win Wednesday night in Cleveland and Toronto beats Chicago.
The Cavaliers, however, are 39-1 at home and are attempting to match the best home record in NBA history. The Sixers are only 16-24 on the road and have lost six straight games.
Andre Iguodala led the Sixers with 25 points.Hawks 81, Heat 79
At Atlanta, Flip Murray scored 17 points to lead the Hawks' reserves past Heat scrubs in a playoff preview that was more like a preseason game. With both teams locked into their postseason position — they'll play Game 1 in Atlanta this weekend — there was little incentive for either to give significant minutes to top players. They didn't.
Miami star Dwyane Wade, coming off a career-best 55 points against the New York Knicks, didn't even bother dressing. Neither did Jermaine O'Neal or Udonis Haslem, the latter recovering from a deep cut on his right thumb.
Michael Beasley led the Heat with 23 points and 13 rebounds in only 24 minutes.
The Hawks rested Maurice Evans and Zaza Pachulia, and kept their starters on the bench much of the night. Speedy Claxton, a $25 million free-agent bust, actually played for the first time in more than two years.
Copyright 2009 The Associated Press.
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