TLN’s Game Preview: Lakers @ Hornets

    In yesterday’s pregame I expressed my desire for a close game. I elucidated my listlessness over the previous five blowouts.

    Ask and you shall receive, I suppose.

    The Lakers prevailed in an emotional contest in Dallas in which they limited the Mavericks to only 39-points in the second half after allowing 60 in the first.

    For a team that had yet to be tested in a late game situation, the Lakers reacted in part with poise and in part with a deer-in-the-headlights type shock. After a late fourth-quarter timeout after the Mavericks had cut the Laker lead to two, I swear I saw Sash with tears in his eyes.

    Now, this supposed overreaction and eventual triumph proves two things to me; two things of paramount importance for me. First, the ability of the Lakers to close out a game late in the fourth quarter with their defense while their offense was stymied. Second, that this team now possesses the same abhorrence to defeat that their leader, Kobe Bryant has instilled into them.

    It is not that this team cannot lose so far this season; it is that this team refuses to lose.

    And it is this refusal that will ultimately transform into that almighty “toughness” that seems to be the missing piece in the Lakers quest for greatness.

    The next step in that quest leads the Lakers to the 504: New Orleans, LA, where they will face the Hurrrrnets and their star guard, Chris Paul.

    Paul and his ability to penetrate and run the pick and roll with either David West or Tyson Chandler gave the Lakers fits last season, but with their renewed commitment to defense, it will be fascinating to see whether or not Pixie Paul will be able to surgically pick apart the Laker defense.

    Tipoff: 5:00 PM PST

    Television -

    • Los Angeles: KCAL 9 (Joel Myers & Stu Lantz)
    • New Orleans: Comcast Sports Television (Bob Licht & Gil McGregor)

    Radio -

    • Los Angeles: AM570 KLAC (Spero Dedes & Mychal Thompson)
    • New Orleans: KMEZ 106.7 FM (Sean Kelley & Gerry Vaillancourt)

    Injuries -

    Lakers: None to report.

    Hurrrrnets -

    • Questionable: Sean “Kiwi Kiwi” Marks (calf & hamstring), Morris Peterson (knee)
    • Probable: Melvin Ely (dental condition)

    Storylines -

    Required Reading: If you like my pregame articles and if you like NBA basketball for that matter, do yourself a favor and head to the local bookseller and pick up a copy of FreeDarko’s first book entitled The Macrophenomenal Pro Basketball Almanac. Their intellectual analysis of our collective basketball heroes truly illuminates the overarching style of the new sports journalism class.

    Get it now.

    Varsity Challenge -

    (Prize: Morning beignets with Hamblen at Café du Monde)

    The original Charlotte Hornets selected what Laker in the 1988 Expansion Draft?

    • http://ld2k.com Chris Manning

      Am I the only one who thinks the Hornets are overrated! Don’t get me wrong, Chris Paul is one of the, if not THE, BEST PG’s in the league and he is coming into this game having posted at least 20 points, 10 ast’s in every previous game, but as a team, I don’t think they are on the elite level as the Lakers or Celtics.

      I say we win by 10+ as long as we don’t turn over the basketball, stay at home on their shooters and as always, crash the boards.

    • PauKobeBynumOdomDynasty

      k guys don’t make fun of Chris Paul. Pixie Paul isnt a great way to call the guy. We were all for him in the Olympics! What happened now? We are just showing the Laker fan arrogance right here. Respect other players, and by other players i mean everyone except Kwame Brown (there’s a limit to how many missed dunks, missed layups, missed passes, out of control dribbles, butterfinger hands, traveling violations, the list goes on and on…).

      This is the biggest competition for the Lakers this season, but i expect a win.

      I’ll express my opinion, but seriously last night should not have been that close. Kobe will have to change his game plan tonight. If we are gonna win, its going to depend on this guy. He has to start the game and end the game scoring. Sure, teammates first, self second, but if this team doesnt want to lose, Kobe has to open up the first quarter with 15 points and then in the 4th 15 points. Just my opinion :)

      Lets go Lakers, lets GO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • lakeshow

      Good call, Paukobebynumodomdynasty. Just how I felt.

    • ShortDiezel

      the Lakers need to be aggresive starting at tip-off on both sides of the court.. forget a close game.. i want a blow out EVERY game.. I want to inject fear into our opposition..

      on a side note.. why doesn’t Pau take the mid-range jump shot more often.. he can hit that all day especially cause he is taller than the majority of his defenders.. although i like the way he mixes up his shots, i’d like to see him take the mid-range jump shot more

    • Triple0cho_LA

      Please do not compare your “articles” to anything related to FreeDarko.

    • Andrew Rafner

      Pixie Point Guard- A zippy, quick, tiny NBA guard whose small stature and slight build aid in his prowess. Many times have elfin facial features. Keen ability to create plays out of chaos.

      EXAMPLES: Steve Nash, Kirk Hinrich, Chris Paul, Jordan Farmar, Luke Ridnour, Pete Maravich, Jason WIlliams, Isiah Thomas, Nate Archibald, Muggsy Bogues, et. al.

    • http://www.myspace.com/androsaysitsok androsays

      was it kurt rambis?

    • adjeff

      I cant wait until tonites game!! Good preview!

    • http://myspace.com/sonicussj Whatsa

      Varsity Challenge: Kobe Bryant.

    • http://www.myspace.com/androsaysitsok androsays

      nah dudes, kobe was drafted in 96

    • http://TheVerveNerve.com Billy Kupchak

      Kurt Rambis

    • Andrew Rafner

      [Comment ID #54291 Will Be Quoted Here]

      Kiriakos Rambidis! Κυριάκος Ραμπίδης!!!

    • http://TheVerveNerve.com Billy Kupchak

      Q: The original Charlotte Hornets selected what Laker in the 1988 Expansion Draft?

      A: Kurt Rambis

    • tamir

      Varsity Challenge -

      (Prize: Morning beignets with Hamblen at Café du Monde)

      The original Charlotte Hornets selected what Laker in the 1988 Expansion Draft?

      Answer: Glen Rice

    • Freshh

      Lakers win by 7-9 pts

      Bynum-double double

    • DCLAKER

      I don’t care what nobody says..any team with Posey (we ALL wanted him in a Laker unifrom)is dangerous and trust me they will play much harder than Dallas…but,

      Lakers 111-Hornets 103.

    • mr.laker19

      EMERGENCY EMERGENCTY! VERY IMPORTANT MESSAGE FOR THE NATION. The Hornets are not overrated, I repeat THE HORNETS ARE NOT OVERRATED. Please guys if anything do not sleep on this team because they are clearly a top 4 or 5 team in the league at the absolute worst. They have the best P.G., MO pete who is pretty much consistent, Peja who can still light it up, David West who is emerging as a all star caliber power forward thats here to stay, Tyson Chandler who has the hops and hands of Randy Moss and 7 feet and can catch a oop from Paul from a mile a way, and the new piece which I like to call the reincarnation of Robert Horry in James Posey. This guy just wins… period. Please, lets go hard to these guys, hard as we went in the last three against Houston.

      Side note:
      Top 5 Teams
      1.Lakers
      2.Leprechauns ooops I mean Celtics
      3.Utah Jazz
      4.Hornets
      5.Hawks: They are the real deal too

    • http://youtube.com/MvpGoesToKobe LakersNewDynasty08

      INDIVIDUAL MATCHUPSSSSSSSS

    • DCLAKER

      I hope we see another Ariza/Sasha chest bump…or more like Sasha got bodied,LMAO!!!

      That’s what the LAKESHOW is all about…pure ENTERTAINMENT!

      70+.com,I can’t stop laughin’.

    • http://ld2k.com Chris Manning

      [Comment ID #54318 Will Be Quoted Here]
      They are a top team in the West. They are NOT better than our current team and I feel they are overrated to what we will be able to do to them when healthy.

    • http://deleted Miguel

      [Comment ID #54271 Will Be Quoted Here]

    • mr.laker19

      [Comment ID #54327 Will Be Quoted Here]

      Hey, I agree with that. I just dont want us to sleep on them. They are not overrated, but to us (just like the rest of the league minus the celtics maybe) they are simply not on our level, I agree completely chris. But I dont want us to be over confident because if we are we could lose to any team. Thats all Im sayin.

    • DCLAKER

      Much respect to James “Lockdown” Posey for his analysis about Kobe.As he puts it “You can’t stop Kobe”.

    • Dave

      Up by 21 at halftime. The bees are sucking pollen. Somebody call the exterminator.

    • PauKobeBynumOdomDynasty

      [Comment ID #54289 Will Be Quoted Here]

      A misinterpretation by me. Sorry Andrew

      Im with u LakeShow

    • Robert

      yo soy roberto y estoy bien ESTUPIDOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!

    • MILO

      [Comment ID #54344 Will Be Quoted Here]

      Robert i could not possibly agree more, Pinche
      eeeeeeeeeestupidooooooooooooooooooo…

    • Scott P

      I believe that trivia answer is George Lynch.