After a week-long break to celebrate the best players in the sport, the Los Angeles Lakers have come out firing in the second half. Los Angeles is 2-0 thus far after the All-Star Game with a historic 27-point comeback against the Dallas Mavericks on Sunday. For the first time all year, fans are eagerly looking ahead at the Lakers schedule to see who is next.
Los Angeles definitely has the talent to make a playoff push at the tail end of this season. The team just needs to stay healthy and cannot afford to drop any winnable games. While they are in striking distance for a playoff spot, they still need to take care of business.
After Sunday’s historic comeback, the Lakers have 21 more games to play this season. The next five might be the most important of that stretch considering who they play.
Lakers schedule lookahead: The extremely important next 5
- Tuesday, February 28: at Memphis Grizzlies
- Wednesday, March 1: at Oklahoma City Thunder
- Friday, March 3: vs Minnesota Timberwolves
- Sunday, March 5: vs Golden State Warriors
- Tuesday, March 7: vs Memphis Grizzlies
Los Angeles plays the Memphis Grizzlies on back-to-back Tuesdays and in between those two Tuesdays are three important games. By the time this stretch of games is over, the Lakers could either catapult themselves up the Western Conference or could dig a hole that is too big to get out of.
Every one of these games is important because of the standings and the fact that all of these teams could be competition in the playoffs.
The Lakers likely aren’t catching the Grizzlies in the standings (eight games back) but they are a good barometer of where this new-look roster stands. Splitting these games against the Grizzlies should be considered a win, 2-0 would be exceptional and 0-2 would make the other three games sandwiched between them all must-wins.
The other three games are all extremely important for Western Conference seeding. As of the time of writing this, the Thunder are 0.5 games back of the Lakers, the Timberwolves are one game up and the Warriors are two games up.
In the absolute perfect world, the Lakers would go 5-0 or 4-1 (with a loss to Memphis) and would shoot at least into the play-in thanks to the head-to-head matchups. However, in the worst-case scenario (which is not impossible), the Lakers would lose all five or go 1-4 and find themselves in an even bigger rut than they were before.
With 16 games left to play after this five-game stretch from Tuesday to Tuesday, it is clear that Los Angeles needs to be on its A-game.