INGLEWOOD, Calif. -- You know it's a hard-hat type of game when the chic Great Western Forum crowd chants, "A. C.!. . . A. C.!"
Lakers forward A. C. Green -- who keeps his elbow wrapped because he throws it a lot -- adored last night's brutal inside play, but the Washington Bullets are ill-equipped to play roughhouse basketball and were easily defeated, 118-93.
"A. C. Green? They were using him as a guard off the bench," Bullets rookie Tom Gugliotta said. "That's a 6-foot-9 guard. Doug Overton and Rex Chapman had to box out A. C. Green, for crying out loud."
Los Angeles was without its top two off-guards -- Byron Scott and Tony Smith -- so it had no choice but amble to the lane for
NTC four- and five-foot shots. Forward Sam Perkins was the recipient most of the evening, depositing 12 of 14 shots and scoring 25 points over undersized Bullets.
The book on Perkins is to pound him, to lay a body on him. But center Pervis Ellison didn't have much beef to aim at Perkins, and the Bullets paid. When it was not Perkins, it was Green (10 points, nine rebounds) and center Vlade Divac (15 points, 12 rebounds, seven blocked shots) providing the mayhem.
Coach Wes Unseld said he thought the Bullets' quickness might nullify the Lakers' bulk. "It should've been [a factor]," Unseld said. "All things being even, it should've been. It wasn't."
And it wasn't a night to remember for Washington's two certified scorers -- Harvey Grant and Gugliotta. Grant did not score in the first half, shot a mere 5-for-13 and finished with 12 points. Gugliotta, who shot just 3-for-13 Thursday night in Utah, made it a repeat here -- shooting 6-for-19 and scoring 14 points.
The Bullets have lost two of three on this current road trip with two to play. The Lakers have won nine of their past 12.
Washington trailed by 11 after three quarters, stole a pass on the first possession of the fourth, but Michael Adams flubbed Gugliotta's perfect bounce pass to get the deficit under 10 points.
From there, it was over -- Washington trailed 99-80 just six minutes later, and the UCLA fans in the crowd called for Washington rookie reserve Don MacLean.
MacLean gave them the thumbs-up sign and entered the blowout with five minutes left.