Halftime: Lakers 53, Suns 45

It didn’t look like the same game. The Lakers declined to allow the pace to be as fast as it had been in the first four games of the Western Conference finals. The Lakers played it a little slower tonight in Game 5 at Staples Center. It was a winning formula. They led by as many as 17 points in the first half. Kobe Bryant scored nine of his 15 points during a 3-point shooting frenzy over a 56-second span in the second quarter. Derek Fisher had 13 points and Lamar Odom added 12 as the Lakers attempted to take a 3-2 series lead.