After an unassuming loss to Utah Tuesday night in Anaheim, the Laker preseason Tour de Love rolls up to the bleeding heart of the Golden State’s Central Valley.

A bastion of both agriculture and a newspaper called the Bee, the Lakers venture to Fresno, California, for tonight’s second preseason contest against inter-city rivals and Staples Center co-tenants, the Los Angeles Clippers.

The Clippers come into their first preseason contest on the heels of the resignation/firing/deportation of longtime General Manager and Laker Hall of Famer Elgin Baylor, in addition to fielding a roster of which only four are returning from last season.

With newcomers Baron Davis, Marcus Camby and rookie Eric Gordon leading the new Clipper charge, the Red, White and Blue across the hall look to become something more than an afterthought in Los Angeles basketball lexicon.

I just picture the Clippers as the Lakers nerdy kid brother who loves the indie rock, plays Ultimate Frisbee and has a penchant for all things Star Wars. Just enough of a geek to remain relevant yet still is intriguingly cool.

As previously stated, the Lakers do not have too much to prove in this preseason. In fact, it would be to their advantage not to prove much of anything this preseason.

Unlike last season, expectations are astronomically high and irrational trepidation is at an all-time low. So, the best thing to do for the duration of this exhibition schedule is to simply put on your fresh Pau Gasol jersey, drink a Capri Sun and soak in the calming thought that there are only twenty days until the real fun commences.

Television -

  • Los Angeles: KCAL 9 (Joel Myers & Stu Lantz)

Radio -

  • Los Angeles: AM570 KLAC (Spero Dedes & Mychal Thompson)

Injuries -

  • Questionable: Sasha Vujacic (ankle)
  • Doubtful: Luke Walton (ankle surgery), Sun Yue (God’s wrath for cheating on Gu Chen)

Storylines -

Dwyane Mitchell, we hardly knew ye: The first casualty of camp has been named. Guard Dwyane Mitchell was waived by the Lakers yesterday after being limited by a sore knee. Mitchell, despite certainly being a kind young gentleman, will not be missed in the slightest.

Welcome Back!: The name on everybody’s lips is Andrew Bynum. And, naturally, the massive dominating storyline of Tuesday’s contest in Anaheim was the unofficial return of the same Andrew Bynum.
After not playing in a full speed NBA contest since January, Bynum played half of a ¾ speed NBA preseason game. It is difficult to draw any conclusions about Andy’s performance, aside from the fact that he transformed into a swolled out dude, not to mention the goatee. OH! The GOATEE!

Brotherly Love: This may be the only time I suggest something so audacious, but overlapping our Lakers tomorrow evening is the first NLCS featuring the Los Angeles Dodgers since 1988. So, if only for support of our fair city, pop the channel up a couple of dials and root, root, root for the DOYYYYYYYYYYYERS!

Varsity Challenge -

(Prize: a #23 Dwayne Mitchell jersey…he’s not going to need it)

What current NBA players call the city of Fresno home?

  • lyk13

    Wait wait Andrew,

    Sun Yue (God’s wrath for cheating on Gu Chen)

    What!?

  • Andrew Rafner

    [Comment ID #51987 Will Be Quoted Here]

    ya know, they do call mono the “kissing disease”. and unless Gu Chen is stateside chillen with Sunny…im just sayin…sooooooomeone isn’t being faithful.

  • Freshh

    Lulz

  • webJUNKEE

    I can’t wait for tonight’s game. I will be there front and center and I hope they go through the full roster tonight. I wanna see everyone from Kobe all the way down to CJ Giles take the floor. It should be an exciting one!!

    Melvin Ely is one I know who calls Fresno Home. Bruce Bowen was from Merced, but he went to school in Fresno from an early age. My mom was his kindergarten teacher. Anyone else?

    GO LAKERS!!!!!

  • jp

    i know the answer varsity it is bruce bowen,brook and robin lopez,deshawn stevenson, do i get the prize??

  • Andrew Rafner

    [Comment ID #52019 Will Be Quoted Here]

    i’ll have it wired to your account as usual.

  • jp

    melvin is from illinois i got more right do i get the prize i dont have any laker jerseys chris jefferies is a future nba player from fresno and

  • freakincrod

    You would think that you’d also put the time of the game, right next to the channel. But look, it’s not there!It never is… Do you think that you could start putting the game time as well?

  • DCLAKER

    Is Sun Yue playin’.

  • jplakers120

    hey andrew when are u giving me my prize?

  • e

    lamar should come off the bench, he’s been terrible…put ariza into the mix

  • jplakers120

    lamar sucks right now

  • Michael_23

    LO keeps this up this’ll make trade transactions so much easier. He’s got 1 year left which makes him more attractable to teams who want to remove a couple $$$ off their budget for next year.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d3RVenjkczw Rain