The Los Angeles Lakers are in the state capital to face the Sacramento Kings.
After blowing out the Memphis Grizzlies, the Purple and Gold have won four straight games to start the season and are looking to extend that number to five tonight. The starters scored 74 points which was outstanding, but equally impressive the ‘renegades’ posted 50 points.
They were on fire and hitting on all cylinders against the Grizzlies; displaying tremendous offensive firepower and a strong defense. The Lakers led by 11 at the end of the first quarter and later extended that lead to 29. The game was actually over at halftime with the Lakers up 73-46; their highest scoring half since issuing the Clippers a thorough beat down on January 15th.
The match up of the Gasol brothers was fun to watch. For those people who thought that Pau would take it easy on Marc were proven wrong as he officially ended the competitive phase of this low-post battle by posterizing his brother with an emphatic reverse dunk.
Lamar Odom reached a milestone last night scoring his 11, 000th career point and became the 10th fastest player in NBA history to reach 11,000 points, 6,000 rebounds and 3,000 assists.
The Lakers are facing a talented young Kings team. This team has come back from a deficit to win three of the four games they’ve played. The Lakers are averaging 114.8 points against the Kings and have won 13 of the last 16 games. The Lakers have also won their last three games at Arco Arena.
The Kings have a long team; their front line is averaging 42.3 points per game and 14 rebounds. Lakers front line is averaging 50 points and 27.8 rebounds.
The Lakers need to come out aggressive on both ends of the floor and dominate the painted area. They need to jump on this early and get a lead, this will take the crowd out of the game. The Lakers need to slow Tyreke Evans, the Kings leading scorer and best playmaker and limit his impact on this game.
The Lakers are the top scoring team in the league averaging 114.3 and the Kings are allowing over 108 points per game. For the Lakers everything starts with their defense. They need to control the tempo and play at their pace, take care of the basketball and limit their turnovers. They also need to continue to use excellent ball movement and player movement to find high percentage shots.
The Lakers defense has been solid, but the scary thing is that it can and will get better. They need get back in transition, limit the Kings points in the paint, limit this team to one shot per possession, rotate out to three point shooters, and challenge every shot.
The Purple and Gold experience, scoring, depth, defense and execution down the stretch will be the difference in this game. They will continue to run their offense through Pau Gasol. His all-around game is too much for rookie DeMarcus Cousins who will get frustrated and spend a lot of time on the bench in foul trouble.
Tip-off: 7:30 PM PST
- Los Angeles: KCAL (Joel Myers & Stu Lantz)
- Sacramento: Comcast Sportsnet (Grant Napear & Jerry Reynolds)
- Los Angeles: 710 ESPN (Spero Dedes & Mychal Thompson)
- Sacramento: 1140 AM KHTK (Gary Gerould)
- Andrew Bynum (Knee) Out
- Luke Walton (Hamstring) Listed as Day-to-Day