Los Angeles Lakers: 3 keys to beating the Portland Trail Blazers in Game 31

(Photo by Sam Forencich/NBAE via Getty Images)
(Photo by Sam Forencich/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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Los Angeles Lakers
Damian Lillard #0 of the Portland Trail Blazers tries to get around Anthony Davis #3 of the Los Angeles Lakers (Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images) /

Following two days of rest, the Los Angeles Lakers are back in action against the Portland Trail Blazers this Saturday night. Let’s look at the three keys to victory for the team.

After a successful start to the season, the Los Angeles Lakers have finally hit a rough patch. The team has lost four straight to legitimate playoff teams, including blowing a 14 point lead to the LA Clippers on Christmas Day.

You can’t have a perfect season, and struggles are to be expected, even with a team as good as the Lakers. But regardless the team needs to have a bounce-back performance and get back on track against their next opponent, the Portland Trail Blazers.

The Blazers experienced their rough patch almost immediately, coming into the season without starting center Jusuf Nurkić, and losing rotation players in Zach Collins, and Rodney Hood to injury shortly thereafter. However, after sputtering to a 5-12 start, the team has rallied around Damian Lillard, CJ McCollum and Carmelo Anthony and are now sitting at the 8th spot in the Western Conference with a 14-18 record.

The Lakers and Blazers met once before, in a game that the Lakers easily won 136-113. However, both teams are a little different since the last time they met. The Blazers are starting to hit their stride, while the Lakers appeared to have lost a step with this four-game losing streak.

LeBron James and Anthony Davis are both a little banged up with various injuries, and the team’s lack of a reliable third scorer is starting to show as well. But regardless, the Lakers should be eager to put this recent skid behind them and come out strong against the Blazers.

With that in mind, here are the three keys to victory that will allow them to do just that.