The Lakers have arrived in East Rutherford, New Jersey for the fourth of their 7-game road trip with a 3-0 record on said trip to face the Nets. Kobe Bryant and the Lakers had a reason to smile leaving the Palace in Auburn Hills for once, by snapping a 9-game losing streak and finally beating the Detroit Pistons in the Motor City.
The Lakers have won 4 straight and their last five games on the road for a league best 26 road wins and pull to within a game of Cleveland for the leagues best record. It should be blatantly obvious that the Lakers have their eyes set on being the best team in the association.
Having the leagues best record will afford Los Angeles the ability to achieve one of their season long goals and much needed home court advantage against every opponent to accomplish the main goal of winning a championship.
As we all know NBA basketball is a game of runs and the Detroit game had three such runs, two by the Lakers and one by Detroit but none bigger than the 20-0 run the Lakers had to close the third quarter and beat the Pistons at home for the first time in 10-games.
The Nets could’ve helped the Lakers cause by beating the Cavaliers on Wednesday night but couldn’t hold on.
This will be the second game of the season against the Nets, the Lakers beat them 120-93 at Staples Center on 11/25/2008. In that game the Lakers had a two-point lead at halftime and ran past New Jersey and outscored them 64-39 in the second half. The Nets had a healthy Devin Harris for that game he put up a 21 point 6 assist effort.
Defensively the Lakers need to control the tempo, glass, get back in transition and focus on rotating out to three point shooters.
Rookie Brook Lopez has played well but he’ll have his hands full with Pau Gasol. The Nets have a lot of youth in the post so look for the Lakers to work their inside game tonight.
The team is playing to their advantage by establishing Pau in the post and letting him set the table for everyone else. Look for Lamar’s solid play to continue. Trevor has been awesome as a starter but the scary thing is he is getting better.
The second unit has begun to provide a spark; they’re playing together, sharing the ball and knocking down shots. I want to see excellent player movement and excellent ball movement while outworking the Nets.
Defensively is where this game will be won or lost.
Tipoff: 4:30 PM PST
- Los Angeles: KCAL TV Channel 9 (Joel Myers & Stu Lanz)
- New Jersey: YES (Marv Albert & Ian Eagle)
- Los Angeles: AM570 KLAC (Spero Dedes & Mychal Thompson)
- New Jersey: WFAN 66 AM(Chris Carrino & Tim Capstraw)
- Andrew Bynum (Knee)
- Devin Harris (Day-to-Day)