2. Getting another elite team after the Clippers will help the Los Angeles Lakers get up to speed
Like we said in the first slide, the most important thing about these seeding games is the Los Angeles Lakers getting back up to speed and Frank Vogel figuring things out for his playoff rotations. Of course, staying healthy is in the mix as well.
Playing two elite teams in a row is the perfect way to get back up to speed and get ready for the playoffs. The Lakers are going to be tested in this game as the Raptors are one of the best teams in the league and actually handed the Lakers a loss in their only regular-season matchup.
The Lakers will only see the Raptors in the NBA Playoffs if they shock the Milwaukee Bucks and Boston Celtics and make the NBA Finals, but having these high-pressure games are particularly important right now.
This is especially true without fans. The Lakers are going to have to create their own energy and it is much easier to do so and get in the hang of doing so when you are in a closely-contested game against one of the league’s best.
On the contrary, it can be hard to create energy against a bad team, like the Washington Wizards, where the Lakers are reminded that the game means nothing for playoff standings and they are not truly testing themselves in the process.
Win or lose, this game is going to be beneficial for the Lakers and I would much rather take a close loss in a game that the Lakers learn something against the Raptors versus an easy win that added nothing to the team against a team like the Wizards.
The energy and momentum are already high from the Clippers win and the Lakers need to keep that train rolling. There is no better way to add coal to that engine than by beating another elite team in back-to-back games.