TLN’s Game Preview: Lakers vs. Thunder

The Lakers are back at the Staples Center tonight looking to extend their winning streak to seven games. Going 6-0 on the road trip was epic and will go a long way for the mentality of this team and an excellent point of reference.

Keeping the good news going, the Lakers not only have the league’s best record but also hold the tie-breaker over two of the best teams in the Eastern Conference.

During Sunday’s game against the Cavaliers, with Kobe Bryant battling the flu, he still made a huge impact and sunk a turnaround fall away jumper that was sick. The story of the game was the production received from everyone and the dominance of Lamar Odom & Pau Gasol, that’s right Lamar, showed the full package dropping a season-high 28 points on the Cavs and grabbing 17 boards.

Pau Gasol came up big posting an 18 point 12 rebound effort & placed an exclamation point on the game, finishing strong with a rebound dunk following a Kobe Bryant missed shot. He has averaged 26 points & 13.8 boards since Andrew went down.

The problem has always been consistency or the lack of it with Lamar, but he has now shown he can do it and now everyone expects to see that type of energy & focused performance from him in every game. He has averaged 16.8 Points and 10.8 boards per game since Bynum’s injury.

The Thunder are a developing young team that has been competitive and on a two game winning streak including an impressive win over the Blazers. The Lakers need to come out and be the aggressors and jump on this team early and defensively impose their will on them.

The Thunder starting five are all talented players that the Lakers will need to control defensively and limit their impact on the game.

It is unknown if Adam Morrison & Shannon Brown will play tonight, Brown will help defending quick guards and both could be weapons off the bench. The trade provides a great opportunity for them.

The Lakers need to throw the ball into the low post and allow Pau Gasol & Lamar Odom to go to work.  The Lakers need to recall the “four pound beat” the coaching staff drills into them, use excellent ball movement, player movement while outworking the Thunder.

The Lakers will not have a letdown and will win by double figures. The team has an advantage with their long front line and will win by controlling the tempo, glass, stopping dribble penetration and rotating out to three point shooters.

Tipoff: 7:30 PM PST

Television -

  • Los Angeles: Fox Sports West 1 HD (Joel Myers & Stu Lantz)
  • Oklahoma City: FS Oklahoma HD (Brian Davis & Grant Long)

Radio -

  • Los Angeles: AM570 KLAC (Spero Dedes & Mychal Thompson)
  • Oklahoma City: WWLS 640AM “The Sports Animal” ( Matt Pinto)

Injuries -

Lakers:

  • Andrew Bynum (Knee)

Thunder:

  • Nenad Krstic (Flu)
Jeff Little is the pre-game writer for LakerNation.com. Follow him on Twitter.
  • destiny-dynasty

    wonder if we’ll see our new teammates in action today. hope so

  • WifelovesLuke

    Bench needs to play heavy minutes tonight so the starters can save energy for Utah.

  • T.A.

    I really would like to try out our new toys tonight

  • Farmars_inner_Jordan

    Don’t take them lightly! The Thunder are an exciting team, and feed off of turn overs. Kevin Durandt, as we all know, is a talented player who has myriads weaponry to attack our Lakers. Take ‘em out early and keep ‘em down!

  • Juilliard Dancer

    Just read that BILL SIMMONS article on being a Kobe Hater..he says this about Lebron “It was a complete performance, basketball at its finest,”I’ve been comparing those two games ever since. Never has basketball seemed more simple to me: I would rather watch a 52/9/11 than a 61/0/3. I would. It’s really that simple. It’s a matter of preference. So don’t call me a Kobe hater, call me a basketball lover.
    Isn’t Basketball suppose to be played by a team?.. guys who do their thing and together form a great Team..that’s NOT how the Cavs played. It’s a one man show and his offense better make their shots wide open becasuse of his size..Kobe runs the Triangle.HELLOOO THE STATS CAN’T BE COMPARED, BUT THE TEAMS CAN
    so CHECK THIS OUT
    Lakers go into MSG with a TEAM..guys who step up and do their jobs. That’s what the Lakers did..Don’t you want to see good basketball Bill..Basketball at it’s finest? isn’t that when teams can get it done in any situation bc they all do their jobs. basketball is played by a TEAM, not by one guy who is doing everyhthing for his team. That was proven by KOBE and the Lakers on Saturday and by the Spurs against the Cavs a few years ago. Why I like Kobes performance better because he has his team stepping up and doing their jobs. He makes sure that guys who are suppose to rebound, REBOUND, look at all the assist distributed among the Lakers..it’s the TRIANGLE, EVERYONE PASSES..kOBE did his thing by scoring 61.felt the game out was hot so did his job.and his shots are a lot more beautiful to watch then Lebron just being big and hoping they go in..Kobe delivers in spectacular ways. He can score 100+ if he wanted to because of his abilities, no matter how big guys are..he knows how to get the into the hoop and doesn’t need to rely on being the football player on the court.
    Look at the Cavs, they panicked when tested by a real team like the LAKERS..when the Lakers D didn’t allow Lebron to make Lay ups, they didn’t know what to do..their Center does nothing in the paint. Lebron has to do everything and this method isn’t going to work to win RINGS.
    Bill Simmons, I like to watch Great Basketball and that’s played by Teams..The Lakers punkd the Cavs with Kobe on the bench bc Kobe has them playing Team ball.The lakers have it all because of Kobe. Kobe has his warriors ready for battle..He knows his job and they know theirs..It’s called Team ball..I’d much rather see a beautiful scoring performance by Kobe and watch Gasol and Lamar step up and grab the rebounds..see great passes..see a team that can win in any kind of situation…see a team in MSG that everyone knows can win the Ring because of how prepared they are..weapons in every corner..doesn’t matter what kind of D..THEY can score on you in any way..doesn’t matter how great your offense is..their D can respond to anything. This is what the Lakers have and why Kobe can score 61 and it out shines a performance by a guy who has to grab the rebounds, has to play the D, has to be the one passing out assist to win games. he can keep doing that, but that don’t win RINGS..spurs showed him and all the great teams will continue to do so. Kobe is the all around player because he understands this and is showing that he does. KOBE MVP..THE LAKERS ARE GREAT KOBE IS GREAT.
    Bill this is coming from a Juilliard Dancer..I understand basketball much better then you..I’m glad you like to watch a man do what you call doing it all on the court, but I like watching Team ball..Basketball at it’s GREATEST..Kobe doing it all in every way to have his team playing the way they are..Getting ready for RINGS!!!

  • http://www.whoisepik.com Epik16

    I hope its a blowout and Morrison and Brown gets some time on the floor and get baptized into the purple and gold!

  • kb24bestever

    lets go out there and win this game.
    am looking forward to see morrison and brown play tonight.

  • Lakers #1

    Does anybody know which website can i c the game on for free?

  • sketch

    Nice Julliard Dancer! STFU Bill Simmons! Why don’t you go back to writing for The ‘Jimmy Kimmel Show’, because that’s what your writing is…A JOKE!

    So, does LeHype pay you to wash his balls or do you do it for free? I guess since you work for BSPN, it makes a lot of sense. East Coast bias crap and you’re a Celdicks lover, who got punkd by the Lakers in their own shack last week.

    Go and sulk on your own time stupid mofo! And don’t bring that weak ass $hit that you call a column into the public, because it just shows how much you’re on LeHype’s jock! 5-20! LeHype shot 25% and tried to take the game over and couldn’t do it! And don’t even get me started about the first meeting between the two teams when Kobe dislocated his ring finger on his SHOOTING hand!

    Kobe makes LeHype look like a kid! The difference between the 2 is that Kobe CAN take over games, LeHype can’t! He proved it in the 2 head to head match ups! And Kobe’s turn around fade away high arc shot was the exclamation point to what Julliard Dancer and I’m saying! Kobe’s the Best and that LeHype is…well, OVERRATED!

  • lakerschamps09

    [Comment ID #61673 Will Be Quoted Here]

    justin.tv

  • LA YO

    lOOKS LIKE Bill Simmons should step down cuz Juilliard seems to be producing some smart basketball fans who knows who the greatest player in the league is..Kobe Bryant baby

  • ricky

    I hope Phil gets to test out his new toys today. Take this team down early and keep them out of it. I’m sure Morrison and Brown will get a chance to play at least 5-10 minutes. Put Brown on Westbrook, that would be a sweet match. Morrison against Durant would be awesome. Let them play tonight and see what they can do. Pound them early, get a big lead, let the new kids play and if we in trouble, put the starters back in to finish it. This is exciting!

  • Juilliard Dancer

    what’s more Valuable..having a player who does everything, but when a great teams comes to play, his team can’t beat them because a one man show can’t take on a actual TEAM.or having a player who has his team prepared to take on any style of team out there..any kind of offense and any kind of defense..a player who knows the game better then anyone in the league and can turn it on at anytime..who allows his team to do their thing and learn things the hard way, so when war comes down, they will go on top..That’s where the Lakers are now bc of Kobe. he has brought this team through many battles and has them today prepared to take on any team in the league..This Most Valuable Player has his team sweeping Lebron and Boston because of all his hard work to develop this team. Can you really say lebrons MVP when he got swept and lost on his home court after going 23-0. Kobe knows what’s up and he knows how to get the rings. Having Kobe is a lot more valuable then someone who can’t get it done like when he got tested against the Spurs in the Finals or like when he couldn’t do anything against the Big Men of LA who are not scared to contest him in the paint..o and we didn’t even have Bynum in there..remember what he did to you in La James.. The lakers are the real deal with the MVP

  • Juilliard Dancer

    Plus why do you think New York chanted MVP to Kobe. Not just because his moves and shots are the sickest in the world , but because New York could see the team Kobe has.everyone saw these guys in their teens and look at what Kobes done with them. They saw and felt the dominance of the Lakers because of Kobe Bryant. Lebron didn’t get any of those MVP chants..i mean the Knicks looked like they were going to beat them. New York knows an MVP..reporters and all that just want story and they want to see Lebron MVP so they can do their thing, but come on guys we are looking at the greatest player ever in Kobe Bryant. Watch him win the next 7 or so championships. That should be enough time for Lebron to take notes and he can then win a few in his mid 30′s if there’s no other great teams in the league to go up against or if he changes his game plan and makes everyone around him warriors like Kobe has.either way Kobe is the Best hands down in this league today and through this whole season

  • YEN

    Bill Simmons articles are overrated!!
    Does he even acknowledge that Kobe is playing injured and the Lakers beat the Boston X2 and Cavs X2 -while Kobe had the flu?
    Jordan posted 55pts-4rebs-2ast-1stl and
    Kobe posted 61pts-0rebs-3ast-1blk- but didn’t play the whole game.
    I dont watch basketball for the stats, but for the beauty of the game. I enjoy watching Kobe and other players sinking the most difficult shots, that’s every kids dream growing up, to copy their most favorite player’s hardest shot or buzzer beater.
    Just a last word to Bill… Go watch Football. Go Lakers.

  • sketch

    Hey Bill Simmons!

    How’d your MVP do tonight? 47 points, 1 steal, 1 block, 7 boards, 4 assists, 7, you ready for this? 7 TURNOVERS!!!!!! Yeah, great COMPLETE PLAYER! He’s so complete, that even his turnovers were almost in double digits tonight! Sure he hit 2 clutch free throws to tie, but HE committed a foul that costed them the game with .2 seconds left! LOL!!!!

    WTF!?! There’s only .4 seconds left on the clock, Granger ain’t no Derek Fisher! He can’t hit a shot with .4 seconds on the clock! WTF were you thinking, LeHype, fouling him? WTF, LeHype, were you doing being so close to the guy? Don’t listen to the media hype…you’re D has not improved that much where you should be guarding someone that close! IDIOT!!!! So, there’s your MVP BILL SIMMONS!!!! STFU you IDIOT and take your LeHyped up mvp with you! The true MVP resides in Los Angeles!

  • angel

    stupid lebron james…… wahahahaha 7 turnovers! WTF!??