How sweet it is to be home….normally. The Grammy road trip was none to kind to the Lakers, who finished the 7-game stretch with a 2-5, and are at a season low 13 games under .500. Kobe Bryant is still weeks away from a return. Steve Nash tweaks his back waking up too hard (not a typo) and is out for the week, and neither Steve Blake nor Jordan Farmar have fully taken part in practice. The last thing this Lakers squad needs is a game against a big-time component.
In walk the Pacers.
Sporting the league’s best record, the Pacers are riding high just past the midway point of the season. The Lakers are stumbling, crawling even at this point in the season, while the Pacers are whizzing by in their Bugatti.
Anything short of a miracle and the Lakers will go home tonight with their 30th loss of the season. We know this is a squad that feeds off the home energy, and considering they haven’t had a home game since January 14, we could see a motivated Laker unit tonight.
X-Factor of the Night
The Lakers front line. The Pacers will feature two of the best big men in the game in Roy Hibbert and David West. The Lakers have a rotation of big men that are often outplayed. In order for the Lakers to have any shot tonight, Jordan Hill, Pau Gasol, Robert Sacre, and even Chris Kaman will have to have big showings not just offensively, but defensively as well. Anything less than their best tonight and LA is doomed.
Number of the Night
90.2. As in the amount of points the Pacers give up to their opponents on a game-to-game basis, best in the league. For a Lakers squad short on talent, they must execute on the offensive end tonight. Efficient scoring and careful handling of the basketball are just the beginning. They can’t waste opportunities. Turn the ball over tonight and they will be finished.
I want to believe, but at the end of the day, this is a massive mismatch. If the Lakers win tonight, it’s their biggest win of the year. But I don’t think we have to expect anything like that. 110-83 will be the final.
And if you’re looking to attend the game, make sure to check out Barry’s for all of your Lakers tickets needs.