The Los Angeles Lakers will continue their tough stretch of games when they take on the Los Angeles Clippers in what could be a Western Conference Finals preview.
This will be the third meeting between these two Staples Center rivals with the Clippers taking both of the first two despite the game being tied after three quarters both times. The third meeting was originally scheduled for Jan. 28, but was rescheduled to April 9 after the tragic death of Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna Bryant, and seven others.
The Lakers are in the middle of what is possibly their hardest stretch of schedule of the 2019-20 NBA season. On Friday, the Lakers notched an incredibly impressive win over the Milwaukee Bucks, 113-103. And following the Clippers game, the purple and gold will take on the Brooklyn Nets, Houston Rockets, Denver Nuggets, and Utah Jazz twice.
The major point of focus for Los Angeles in this matchup is consistency. In both of the first two meetings, the Lakers offense collapsed in the final five minutes, resorting to LeBron James isolations against the team best equipped to handle that attack.
Defensively, the Lakers are coming off an excellent effort against the Bucks. However, they’ll need to keep that going against one of the most potent and loaded offenses in basketball. How they establish their presence on the defensive end will be the deciding factor in a game like this.
With Kawhi Leonard, Paul George, and Marcus Morris all in the starting lineup, Danny Green, James, and Anthony Davis will all need to put in their best efforts to give themselves a good chance of winning.
In terms of standings, the Lakers are not in desperate need of a win. They currently hold a six game advantage in the loss column over the Clippers which means as long as they take care of the easier stretches of schedule they have left, they should have the No. 1 seed locked up.
While a win is not necessary in the standings, the Lakers may be extra motivated to avoid going down 0-3 in the season series.
Los Angeles Lakers (48-13) vs. Los Angeles Clippers (43-19)
12:30 P.M. PT, Mar. 8, 2020
Staples Center, Los Angeles, California
TV: ABC, Spectrum SportsNet
Radio: 710 AM (ESPN), 1330 KWKW (Spanish)
Projected Lakers Starting Lineup:
PG: LeBron James
SG: Avery Bradley
SF: Danny Green
PF: Anthony Davis
C: JaVale McGee
Key Reserves: Kyle Kuzma, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Alex Caruso, Dwight Howard, Markieff Morris
Projected Clippers Starting Lineup:
PG: Patrick Beverly
SG: Paul George
SF: Kawhi Leonard
PF: Marcus Morris
C: Ivica Zubac
Key Reserves: Lou Williams, Montrezl Harrell, Landry Shamet, Reggie Jackson, JaMychal Green