NBA: L.A. Lakers 109, Dallas 93

LOS ANGELES, Oct. 29 (UPI) -- The feuding Los Angeles Lakers put aside their squabbling long enough Tuesday night to cruise to a season-opening 109-93 victory over the Dallas Mavericks.

Newcomers Gary Payton and Karl Malone teamed with Shaquille O'Neal to more than make up for the absence of the slow to heal Kobe Bryant.


Malone nearly had a triple-double with 15 points, 10 rebounds, and nine assists. Payton had 21 points, nine assists, and seven boards. O'Neal chipped in with 16 points and nine rebounds.

Referring to the heart of the team, Malone said, "It's not what's on the back of the jerseys, it's what's in the front."

O'Neal and Bryant have been pointed personal barbs at each other publicly this week, but on this night, all was well.

The Lakers led 29-15 after one quarter and never looked back.

For the Mavericks, Antoine Walker and Dirk Nowitzki had 19 points apiece and Antawn Jamison added 17.

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