The (46-20) Los Angeles Lakers are in the state of Texas to face the (47-18) Dallas Mavericks.
Untimely mistakes, being out-rebounded and equally uncharacteristic watching the Lakers big men not play big for the first time in two weeks and not executing down the stretch led to the end of the Lakers eight-game winning streak. As disappointing as the outcome of the Miami game was, all of the mishaps are easily correctable items.
The Lakers are well aware of the fact that they let another winnable game go into the loss column.
The 67th game of the year gives an angry Lakers team an opportunity to start another winning streak, win an important Western Conference game as well as cut the lead the Mavericks have over them to a half a game for the second best record in the West.
The Lakers lost the previous game against the Mavericks on 1/19/11 109-100. The Mavericks have won the last two games against the Purple and Gold after losing eight of the previous nine.
Phil Jackson is one win away from recording his 600th regular season with the Lakers. With one more win, Jackson would become the fifth coach in NBA history to win at least 600 games with one franchise, joining Jerry Sloan (1,127 with Utah), Red Auerbach (795 with Boston), Gregg Popovich (787 with San Antonio) and Red Holzman (613 with New York).
The Lakers have gone 4-6 in their last ten games at the American Airlines Center. In 42 starts, Kobe Bryant is averaging 25.1 points per game.
The Lakers have to stop the penetration of the guards (Jason Kidd, Jason Terry & Rodrigue Beaubois) and do a better job against the screen and roll play. They have to get back in transition to eliminate easy baskets and quickly rotate out to open shooters and with the Mavericks that means extending your defense to the three-point line. Also, they have to limit the number of players having an impact on the game with their scoring.
Dirk Nowitzki, Jason Terry and Jason Kidd are normally the leading scorers for the Mavericks. The Lakers cannot let other players add their name to that list.
Lakers: D. Fisher, K. Bryant, R. Artest, P. Gasol, A. Bynum
Mavericks: J. Kidd, R. Beaubois, S. Marion, D. Nowitski, B. Haywood
Tip-off: 6:00 PM PST
- Los Angeles: KCAL 9 (Joel Myers & Stu Lantz)
- Dallas: KTXA 21 (Mark Followill & Brad Davis)
- Los Angeles: 710 ESPN (Spero Dedes & Mychal Thompson)
- Dallas: ESPN 103.3 (Bob Ortegal & Chuck Cooperstein)
- Matt Barnes (Right Knee Surgery) Probable
- Devin Ebanks (Stress Fracture, Left Tibia) Out
- Theo Ratliff (Left Knee Surgery) Out
- Derek Fisher (Sprained Left Elbow) Probable
- SF Caron Butler (Ruptured Patellar Tendon, Right Knee) Out
- C Tyson Chandler (Sprained Right Ankle) Day-to-Day
- SF P. Stojakovic (Neck Stiffness) Out
- SG Dominique Jones (Right Foot Stress Fracture) Out
- SF Shawn Marion (Ribs) Day-to-Day