The (29-9) Los Angeles Lakers conclude their Texas two-step in Dallas to face the (25-12) Mavericks for the third time this season.

The Lakers lost to the Spurs and are now looking to snap a four game road losing streak. Some people in the media have decided to start the negative talk about the Lakers; that the team is in trouble as well as all of the other faults of the team. It has gotten to the point in some circles that some people have to be talked off of the ledge.

True Lakers fans and true NBA fans realize that an NBA season isn’t a sprint to the finish, it is a marathon. A road that is filled with pot holes, roadblocks, injuries, set backs and other obstacles. Veteran teams like the Lakers with a tremendous amount of experience and leadership have been there before can and will endure.

The fact of the matter is that the Lakers lost a game without Pau Gasol, a banged up Kobe Bryant not finishing the game, but it counts as only one loss. There were some negative things that came out of that loss, but there were some positives such as Andrew Bynum’s performance (23 points, 8 rebounds, 2 assists, and 4 blocked shots) almost matching Tim Duncan’s numbers. Kobe Bryant knocking down seven of his ten shots before exiting early, and Lamar Odom’s 12 rebounds and 5 assists.

The Lakers have split the two games with the Mavericks this year. However, the last game against Dallas was an outstanding 35-point beat down; the Lakers shot 63% from the field, 58% from behind the arc, but it really wasn’t a true representation of that team. The Lakers at home put together a great effort and caught the Mavericks on an off night. Tonight’s game will be tougher. Dallas does a good job of doubling and rotating defensively, the Lakers have to use excellent ball movement and excellent player movement to out-work this team.

Los Angeles has to make defense their calling card come out and play their game. The excuses are there of course, the teams on the road, the second of back-to-back games and several players on the team are banged up. If the Lakers take the court with any of these thoughts they’ll lose. The Lakers leader Kobe Bryant won’t allow the team to fall into this trap.

The Lakers need to control the tempo, be physical with this team and play aggressive on both ends of the court. Establish Andrew Bynum in the painted area and allow him to go to work. It would be to the Lakers advantage to use all of options in the post Kobe, Ron Artest & Lamar Odom against this team. Los Angeles has to contain both Dirk Nowitzki, Jason Terry, and as well as limit their impact on the game.

The Mavericks bench will have an impact on this game, but the real question is; can the Lakers bench put on a repeat performance and out score or at least match the production of the Dallas reserves?

Tip-off: 5:30 PM PST

Television -

  • Los Angeles: KCAL (Joel Myers & Stu Lantz)
  • Dallas: KTXA 21 (Mark Followill & Brad Davis)

Radio -

  • Los Angeles: 710 ESPN (Spero Dedes & Mychal Thompson)
  • Dallas: ESPN 103.3 (Bob Ortegal & Chuck Cooperstein)

Injuries -

Lakers:

  • Pau Gasol (Hamstring) Out
  • Luke Walton (Back)
  • Kobe Bryant (Avulsion Fracture of his Right Index Finger)
  • Ron Artest (Sprained Index Finger)

Mavericks:

  • PF Tim Thomas (Achilles)
  • C Erik Dampier (Knee)
  • SF Josh Howard (Thigh)
  • PF Drew Gooden (Finger)
  • LA Lakers best Franchise of the World

    LETS GO LAKERS!!

  • mystified

    lets go lakers time for another loss

  • lakers2000

    I think we will catch Dallas sleeping and pull one out of our rears. Go Lakers!!! I also hope these tools that post shit talk enjoy themselves now. We will be laughing at them when we get our trophy this year!

    • daboss1848

      u wont even know who they r – theyre chameleons. They will just change their SN, like they did this yr after we won the ship – same nonsense – bench sucks, this guy sucks, that guys sucks, PJ sucks, KB too old, Pau too soft, LO sucks, defense sucks, etc.

      • bostonSUCKS88

        lol, these “fans” are getting annoying. Its like they love when the lakers lose so they can point out all their weaknesses and that would make them feel better about themselves. Everyone feels they can do a better job than Mitch and PJ. Heres the reality, Your criticism solves nothing, so whats the point in being so upset when they lose? Just support your team in good times and bad times. FYI, this is not a bad time for the lakers, we are still the champs.

        • 09champs!

          Amen to that BostonSucks88, people need to realize that this is not NBA live, and GM´s and owners are paying real money, thats why we haven´t traded for hinrich or players you guys want.

      • PauLAsol

        Faker

  • thanhttrinh

    oh man daboss and 88 were rite
    its funny to see these bandwagone fans r annoying and laughing at us, but hey, u never know, and u never realize the REAL champs, haha, lets get it tonite Lakers, to prove these haters that is not over, till its over hiehiehaa
    so lets laughing at us haters, because i think at the end of the season u wont have any opportuniry to laugh lmao
    u gotta sitting at home and watching the Lakers play in the Finals

    • http://lakersnation.com KOBE THA MVP 10′

      they are so annoying, wouldn’t be if they lost tonight and rides on tha Cavs or Celtics dicks

  • Lakers 24 7

    Let the Cleveland hype start. Every one will forget about LA and put the Cavs at the top. Let’s not forget that the Lakers haven’t been as healthy as the Cavs have, and we’ve still managed to keep the best record. Once we are fully healthy and hitting on all cylinders, we will clown on anybody.

  • drive-for-16th

    I don’t expect a win tonight, but u never know. lets go lakers. Just play with heart and victory will come.

  • joshLA

    I smell a blowout approaching…even if kobe plays. Unlike the blazers and nuggets, this team hasnt proven they can beat an elite/good team while being injured and being on the road makes it far less likely.

    29-10 and counting…

    • lakers2000

      Epic Fail!

  • http://lakersnation.com KOBE THA MVP 10′

    I like how tha lakers are playing right now, no flaw yet let alone no turnovers already in a high scoring game

  • lakerbunny

    THERE ARE 254 TICKETS FOR FRIDAYS GAM 557 FOR MONDAYS MLK DAY GAME VS ORLANDO! GO TO LAKERS.COM AND CLICK THE TICKETEXCHANGE BUTTON OR TEAMEXCHANGE.TICKETMASTER.COM AND CLICK THE LOS ANGELES LAKERS LINK!

  • http://57.amklac Maartar loves Robert

    wow passing the ball around , everyone is getting shots, playing like a team……..no wonder ,kobe is on the bench…..GO LAKERS!!

  • Green Flannel

    Hey Bynum showed up fake laker fans (he usually does) and if we win reply to my post so you can tell me how bynum can’t carry our team

    • piss on you

      He can

      on occasion that is

      • Green Flannel

        That’s his 12th double double of the season that’s mor than an occasion

  • http://57.amklac Maartar loves Robert

    bynum is the man….so is lamarr…………shrek i.e farmarrrr..a team win….doesn`t happen much in laker land..

    • http://57.amklac/ Maartar loves Robert.

      damn the kobe made the game winning shot…..i apolojizz he is the best afterall

  • http://TheLakersNation Marwan..

    Kobe… clutch basket after clutch basket. He doesnt care about a bad back, that wont stop him from icing the game. He drilled the J and that gave the Lakers the lead for good.
    Farmar… solid off the bench. Made great plays down the stretch and clutch plays too.
    Ron Ron, fantastic performance tonight. Really gave it his all.
    Bynum… theres nothing I can say other than “can the trade talks with this man, he is the franchise centre for the Lakers.
    The bench had a great overall effort.
    Congrats to Dirk for getting 20,000 points, but it felt good that it came on a loss, it was a bitter-sweet moment for him.
    Lets hope the Lakers ride this momentum heading into the Magic game, and then the 8-game road trip making stops in Boston and Cleveland.

  • http://TheLakersNation Marwan..

    All three Lakers frontcourt players had double-doubles: Odom (18 & 14); Artest (16 & 11) & Bynum (22 & 11).

  • drive-for-16th

    Dirk 20,000 points congrats, but lakers 3000th win congratulations and the win tonight was a great team effort all around, this i sthe type of basketball we need to play ya’ll.

  • ron ron

    nice team effort for the lakers. 1st good game for ron artest since his x-mas amnesia xP

  • http://57.amklac Maartar loves Robert

    mrtard, did you miss the three bricks he threw up before finally , getting that one to fall?.lmao…