LOS ANGELES — Andrew Bynum scored 11 of his 24 points in the fourth quarter when the Los Angeles Lakers rallied to beat the Houston Rockets 88-79 on Tuesday night for their fourth consecutive victory.
Kobe Bryant added 22 points, but had just three field goals in the second half when he picked up four fouls. Lamar Odom came up one assist shy of a triple-double, with 17 points and 19 rebounds in the absence of injured Pau Gasol despite a bout of gastroenteritis.
Two nights after their highest-scoring game of season, a 131-96 win over Dallas, the Lakers avenged one of their three home losses with their fewest points in a win this season.
Ron Artest had seven points and seven rebounds for the Lakers after missing five games because of a concussion.
Reserve Carl Landry led the Rockets with 19 points, while Aaron Brooks added 18, Luis Scola 15 and former Laker Trevor Ariza 12.
Houston twice got within two points in the fourth quarter only to have the Lakers regroup and hit key baskets to keep the lead they owned the entire game. Shane Battier sandwiched 3-pointers around a basket by Scola to draw the Rockets to 73-71.
Odom responded with a three-point play, Bryant made a fadeaway jumper and Bynum’s hook shot extended the Lakers’ lead to 80-73 with 2:09 remaining.
That was part of a 15-8 game-ending run for Los Angeles, which lost to Houston 101-91 at home on Nov. 15.
The Lakers led 53-41, matching their largest lead of the game, on a 3-pointer by Artest. But the Rockets outscored them 14-6, with Scola scoring seven, to get to 59-55 heading into the fourth.
He earned his fourth a minute into the final quarter and gave a cold stare to referee Derek Richardson after Ariza’s running jumper cut the Lakers’ lead to two.
With Artest returning to the starting lineup, the Lakers zipped to a 12-point lead in the first quarter.
Bryant sat down for a breather early in the second, when the Rockets closed to 28-24. But he soon returned and scored nine of the Lakers’ final 13 points, extending their lead to 41-33 at halftime.